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Posted on: June 18, 2020

Longview's COVID-19 Safe Start Plan update

As Cowlitz County continues to remain in Phase 2 of Washington’s Safe Start Plan, the City of Longview would like to remind our citizens and guests of our Longview Municipal Code (LMC) and park regulations. These rules are in place for the safety and enjoyment of not only guests to our parks, but park grounds and facilities, and the neighborhoods that surround our parks. Additionally, these regulations are in force even outside of the Covid-19 restrictions.

 We are aware of events being proposed in local parks, including Lake Sacajawea. There have been no sanctioned, permitted events allowed during this time and nothing upcoming has been permitted. The Go4th Committee decided to cancel its annual 4th of July celebration out of a concern for the public’s safety. This was a difficult decision for that organization to make but they understood their need to act responsibly in the face of the current and ongoing pandemic.

 Not only would a gathering of more than five people while Cowlitz County is in Phase 2 violate Governor Inslee’s directives, but depending on what is planned, it may well violate provisions of the Longview Municipal Code. (Even if Cowlitz County is approved of its modified Phase 3 application, outdoor recreation events are allowed up to 25 people.)

 For example:

             LMC 13.01.200 prohibits sound amplification equipment in the park without a permit. No upcoming events have sought nor been granted a permit; and,

             LMC 13.01.062 prohibits placing any obstacle whatsoever in the park except with the written permission of the parks director. This would include stage equipment, portable sanitation, etc. No upcoming events have sought nor been granted such a permit.

             LMC 13.01.090 prohibits fireworks. Except as allowed by a permit for a public display of fireworks, it shall be unlawful for any person to possess, ignite, explode or discharge fireworks of any description in any of the public parks within the city. No upcoming events have sought nor been granted such a permit.

 Additionally,

             Pursuant to LMC 7.40.020 a special event permit or authorization from the city is required for any event in a park, public place or on private property where it will significantly impact public sidewalks, public roadways or emergency services.

 Park Use Regulations can be found in Title 13 of the Longview Municipal Code. It includes additional information such as parking, vendors (including food), and park hours. Of special note, from June 1 through Labor Day, City parks are closed 11:00 p.m. through 5:00 a.m. of the following morning.

 If and when Cowlitz County is approved to move into the requested modified Phase 3 and playgrounds are allowed to reopen, please be aware that Longview School District grounds and facilities continue to be closed, which includes their playgrounds.

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