Council voted in favor of adoption of the declaration, which initially was slated to last until April 3, during its March 24 meeting.
During discussion of the item, for which several council members called in due to concerns of coronavirus, Council Member Jon Cobb said he is let down by Mayor Bill Goodwin for several reasons, including what he said was Goodwin's refusal to attend a special meeting centered on coronavirus.
During the heated exchange, Goodwin said he was not aware of any request for an emergency meeting.
Cobb asked if the declaration could be made active for three days instead of until April 3 while the city calls a special meeting to deal with several other issues pertaining to the city's response to the coronavirus crisis so far. Council Members Andrea Willott and Andrew Clark agreed they would like to make the amendment shortening the declaration to a three-day activation.
Information from the city states the declaration of a local state of disaster and public health emergency activates the city of Bee Cave's emergency management plan.
The declaration also authorizes the city to commandeer or use any private property or temporarily acquire, by lease or other means, sites required for temporary housing units or emergency shelters for evacuees, subject to compensation requirements, according to the document.
"This declaration authorizes the city to take any actions necessary to promote health and suppress disease, including quarantine, examining and regulating hospitals, regulating ingress and egress from the City, and fining those who do not comply with the City’s rules," the declaration states.
Another city document states even though Travis County's declarations related to coronavirus include Bee Cave, adoption of the city's own declaration of emergency opens up opportunities for reimbursement for expenses related to the event and is the appropriate vehicle for those changes.
It is not clear when a special meeting requested by Cobb will take place, as council did not specify a date for it prior to adjourning the meeting. Community Impact Newspaper will update that information as it is forthcoming.