In an effort to allow governmental bodies to carry out essential functions during the local coronavirus outbreak, Gov. Bill Lee approved Executive Order No. 16 to allow governing bodies to hold meetings without a public audience.

Because governmental officials are recommending no group gatherings larger than 10 until further notice, many local government meetings have been canceled in the past week. However, the order approved March 20 would allow officials to meet electronically so long as they provide public access to meetings.

Should the body not have the means to allow for live-streaming of meetings, it must ensure that a clear recording of the meeting can be made. That recording must be made available to public no more than two business days after the meeting, according to the order.

The order will remain in effect until 12:01 a.m. May 18.