On Thursday afternoon, the Watonwan County Board motioned for a state of emergency.

"Things with COVID-19 are going to go beyond local resources," said Julie Peterson, Emergency Management Director. "By doing this, it opens us up to federal and state assistance. Whether it's financial or other resources that we may need during this time."

The state of emergency will stay in effect for 30 days. The declaration will be renewed if the need for assistance goes longer than 30 days.

Peterson also added that small business loans will be available as part of the declaration.

The county offices will also close to the public from March 20th-27th. County leaders will reassess on the 27th whether to extend the closures.

County workers will continue to work to provide the services via phone, email, and drop boxes by Human Services and at the courthouse. 

The access point for the court will be near the sheriff's lobby. A call must be made to court administration, who will open the door.

Driver's licenses will not be able to be renewed.

The Watonwan County Food Shelf will continue to operate out of the regency building.

TMT service will continue with extra precautions.