On Sunday, March 22nd, under the direction of Ohio Governor Mike DeWine, Ohio Department of Health Director Amy Acton, M.D., MPH issued a director’s order to require all Ohioans to stay in their homes to prevent the further spread of COVID-19 beginning at 11:59 p.m. EDT on Monday, March 23, 2020 until 11:59 p.m. on April 6, 2020. This order prohibits holding gatherings of any size and closes all nonessential businesses. It does NOT prohibit essential activities like going to the grocery store, receiving medical care, or taking your pet for a walk. Residents can return home from out of state and can leave the state.
For more information on what this order means for you and answers to frequently asked questions, click the links below:
With the Wood County Health Department announcing another confirmed case of the Coronavirus, COVID-19, in Wood County, many residents are probably wondering where is the person from and what should we be doing. Both are good questions and certainly understandable. While specific information about the individual cases cannot be released by the Health Department because of protected health information, we should keep in mind the basics of what we know about this virus – particularly how it is spread. The Health Department advises that the virus is primarily spread when an infected person coughs or sneezes. This is why the health experts are asking everyone to practice good social distancing from one another (stay at least 6 feet away). It is very important for all of us to recognize that while we have no publicly confirmed cases in Bowling Green, there most likely are cases of the virus in our community – we just don’t have confirmation yet because of limited testing. What we can do as a community is to continue our good personal hygiene habits by washing hands frequently, if you’re sick, stay home, and practicing good social distancing.
The City will continue to follow the guidance of the Wood County Health Department and the Ohio Department of Health. As information is provided, it will be shared with the community.
Protecting public health and that of city staff is vital. Both will continue to be the guide when making decisions. The public is urged to follow the Stay At Home order and the recommendations by our health experts for slowing the spread of this virus.
March 22, 2020
We find ourselves at a time of historic significance and we, as elected officials and public servants have weighty responsibilities and considerations. As providers of essential public services, there is much to balance in our decision-making process and this requires clear-headed, measured responses intended to prioritize those services which are critical to our citizens. We are also community leaders and we are well aware of, and have significant concerns for, the cascading impacts of restrictions, closures, and modifications on residents and businesses.
I am filled with hope as I see our community coming together to support one another during this unprecedented time. I encourage you to support our small businesses and restaurants (practicing safe social distancing of course!), donate to our local food banks if you are able, check on a neighbor, and deliver needed items to those who are not able to leave their homes. THANK YOU to all who are working tirelessly to keep the shelves stocked, our community safe and healthy, our children safe and educated, and to those of you working to keep “the wheels turning” as much as possible as we move through this trying time. And, THANK YOU to every one of you for the sacrifices you will make to help us all get through this.
Our response to this crisis is revealing the strong character of our community. I appreciate the cooperation and support of all of our citizens as we together confront this most urgent public health crisis. #AloneTogether
March 12, 2020
The City of Bowling Green is following the guidance from the Ohio Department of Health and the Wood County Health Department. Please be assured that the essential services that our community relies upon will continue. However, events and services that can be altered as a way to protect the public and city staff are being reviewed. For the greater good of public health and to flatten the curve by which this virus spreads, practicing smart social distancing and personal hygiene is something we can all do. It is not an overreaction to be responsible or prepared. Protecting the public health will be the guide when making future decisions. The City will be transparent throughout this fluid situation and will remain engaged and in close contact with health experts including the Wood County Health Department as well as our neighboring communities as the situation continues to unfold.
What is the City of Bowling Green doing?
The City of Bowling Green is following guidance from the state of Ohio, Wood County Health Department and the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). The City of Bowling Green and Mayor Aspacher are actively monitoring COVID-19 (coronavirus) and the impacts of the virus as the situation continues to evolve. Mayor Aspacher assures the public that essential services will continue such as emergency medical services, fire and police protection, refuse collection, and utilities. City or community events and non-essential services and public access to facilities have been altered to minimize exposure and to protect the public and city staff.
City Operations Altered.
Beginning March 17, the Bowling Green City Administrative Services Building and all other city facilities (with the exception of the Bowling Green Municipal Court) will be operating on a modified basis and restricting public access. City staff in all of these offices will continue to work remotely and will be available to answer phones and emails. These actions are being taken to support the “Stay at Home” Order and minimize face-to-face contact between employees and the public; however, city operations will continue to function.
Please scroll to bottom of page for Department specific recommendations during this time.
Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds.
Avoid close contact with people who are sick.
Avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth.
Cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue, then throw the tissue in the trash.
Stay home when you are sick, except to get medical care.
Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces.
Most people infected with COVID-19 have mild illness; however, a small percentage of people will have severe illness. Older adults, the very young and those with underlying health conditions may have more serious symptoms.
If you think you're sick, what should you do?
BEFORE you do anything CALL YOUR DOCTOR: If you think you have been exposed to COVID-19 and develop a fever and symptoms, such as cough or difficulty breathing, call your healthcare provider for medical advice.
Using 911 Appropriately Regarding Illness.
Generally speaking, people are aware that they should call 911 in an emergency, but they are less aware of the circumstances in which they should not call 911. The result is that many requests to 911 do not involve true emergencies, which overloads the 911 system with non-emergency calls. General cold and flu-like symptoms are typically not circumstances that would require a 911 call and emergency response.
Individuals with concerns or flu-like symptoms should call their health care provider first with questions. The Ohio Department of Health has a COVID-19 hotline 1.833.4ASK.ODH
By utilizing 911 for only true emergencies such as fires, motor vehicle accidents, life threatening injuries or medical emergencies such as, but not limited to, a heart attach, severe respiratory symptoms or allergic reactions will reduce the potential exposures to first responders, hospital based healthcare workers, and the general public. Bottom line, utilizing the 911 system for only true emergencies is the best practice at this time.
City services/events impacted:
Bowling Green Training & Community Center – Closed
State of the City Address – Postponed
Parks and Recreation Events and Programs – Postponed or Cancelled
Nature Center – Closed (Wintergarden Preserve REMAINS OPEN to the public)
March Bike Safety Committee Meeting – Cancelled
March Park Board Meeting – Cancelled
Last Park & Rec Community Focus Meeting – Cancelled (Comments can still be emailed to Dr. Shannon Orr, directly at email@example.com)
March Slow Roll – Cancelled
Bowling Green Interfaith Breakfast – Cancelled
Wood County Community Earth Day Celebration – Cancelled
On March 25, 2020, the Ohio General Assembly passed H.B. 197, a sweeping piece of legislation aimed at dealing with the state’s response to the Coronavirus/COVID-19 pandemic. Among other items, the bill sets April 28, 2020 as the final day of Ohio’s primary election.
The City of Bowling Green is extending the tax filing due date to July 15, 2020 for 2019 tax returns to be in alignment with the IRS and the State of Ohio. Withholding remittance are not affected by this change and still due in the time frames stated in the Ohio Revised Code and Bowling Green City Ordinances. Thank you to all the taxpayers who have already filed and paid their 2019 tax returns.
Income tax filings may be turned in using the drop box located outside the building or mailed in. Staff will frequently check the drop box throughout the business day (Monday through Friday, 8:00 am – 4:30 pm).
Public Works is focused on continuing essential services such as trash collection and maintenance items. Refuse and Recycling will continue to be collected weekly per your normal collection schedule. Large Item and Mattress Collection has been suspended until further notice.
The public is urged to consider alternate arrangements to pay utility bills:
Pay by Phone: 1-800-206-9415 Processing Fee Applies
The processing fees are assessed directly to the customer by the processing company. The City does not collect the fee. The online fee is $3.50 and by phone is $5.95. If these fees are a concern, we’d recommend customers use the drop box or mail in their payment.
At this time, we have suspended late payment penalties from now to April 13. Temporary shutoffs for non-payment will be suspended until mid-April.
Residents and customers that need to turn in permits or other paperwork to the City Building may still do so. Permits and other commonly used forms may be filled out or turned in using the drop box located outside the building, mailed in, or submitted electronically via email (if applicable). Staff will frequently check the drop box throughout the business day (Monday through Friday, 8:00 am – 4:30 pm).
We ask for your patience as there may be a delay in the approval process.
Public Works: 419.354.6227
Parks & Recreation
Not Closed: The Great Outdoors
The Bowling Green Training & Community Center is closed. The situation will be reassessed on April 6. During the building closure staff will be able to do a thorough and deep clean of the entire facility, ensuring that everything is sanitized prior to re-opening the facility.
Parks and Recreation business may still be conducted online or via phone. Pass holders will be credited for this disruption once the full extent of this fluid situation is known.
All facilities are closed until further notice. This includes restrooms, playgrounds, skatepark, in line rink, horse shoe pits and basketball courts.
During this period of precautionary social distancing, The Great Outdoors remains open. There are almost 400 acres of parkland in the City; a park within 1.5 miles of every resident. Bowling Green Parks and Recreation encourages individuals to explore the parks, get some fresh air, and enjoy the sights and sounds of the natural world. Please maintain at least 6 feet distance between yourself and others utilizing trails and other public spaces.
**ALL PARKS REMAIN OPEN**
Training & Community Center: Closed
Programs & Classes: Postponed or Cancelled
Building Reservations: Suspended Until Further Notice
March Park Board Meeting: Cancelled
Final Focus Group Meeting: Cancelled – Residents may still email comments to firstname.lastname@example.org
As of right now, BG Transit is continuing operations but in modified form.
HOURS OF OPERATION Monday through Friday
6:00 a.m. – 8:00 p.m.
10:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m.
No service on Sunday or Holidays
SCHEDULE A RIDE: 1-800-579-4299
During the COVID-19 response and to practice good social distancing, public meetings will be live streamed over YouTube. Only those, whose meeting participation is required, will be permitted to attend in person. The address for the YouTube channel is www.bgohio.org/meetings.
This is a great way to stay engaged with local government from the safety of your home!