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The town of Rico on Wednesday initiated shelter-in-place regulations to decrease the potential spread of the coronavirus.
The decision came the same day nearby San Miguel County Health Department ordered a shelter in place for the county, Telluride, Mountain Village, Ophir, Norwood and Sawpit.
As of Thursday, there are no confirmed cases of the virus in Southwest Colorado, including Montezuma, La Plata, Archuleta, San Juan, Dolores and San Miguel counties.
San Miguel County health officials are concerned the virus may be in the area because several seriously ill patients in the county show symptoms of coronavirus and have been hospitalized.
Rico, in Dolores County, is 24 miles from Mountain Village and 27 miles from Telluride.
“Because Rico children attend school in Telluride and many Rico residents work in Telluride, the Rico Board of Trustees has implemented the shelter in place policy,” said Rico Town Manager Kari Distefano.
The regulation includes:
Prohibition of all events more than 10 people.No gatherings of more than 10 people at day care centers, child care centers, home child care centers and community centers.Access to Rico Library shall be limited to five or fewer students doing homework.Prohibition of all gatherings of more than five people at food establishments except for the provision of takeout and delivery food.Cease all activities at business facilities in town except for minimum basic operations and essential services.Cease operations and reservations for short-term lodging.All public transportation is limited to 10 people sitting in separate seats unless they are family members.Visitors to Rico are directed to return home immediately. All nonresident homeowners are strongly encouraged to leave Rico and return to their primary place of residence.Construction sites can continue to operate as long as there are 10 people or less on site and workers maintain a 6-foot separation.Outdoor activities can continue as long as they don’t involve more than 10 people and the participants stay 6 feet away from each other.
To evaluate community needs and economic impacts, a community survey will be available on the town website on March 23.
A food bank is available in Rico, and donations are welcome. For information call town at 970-901-3420 or Marilyn Griebel at 970-729-0712.
The town is seeking funding to hire a volunteer coordinator that will help with food deliveries, the food bank, and general public assistance.