Supervisors pass emergency declaration affecting bars, restaurants and other businesses

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Pima County
Emergency Declaration

Supervisors declare emergency, restrict types of service at bars and restaurants, and close social gathering businesses

PIMA COUNTY, March 19, 2020 – The Board of Supervisors today unanimously passed a resolution declaring a state of emergency.  This action gives the County the ability to take immediate and urgent actions necessary to slow the spread of COVID-19 in Pima County.

With that emergency declaration authority, the Board also passed a proclamation that prohibits the serving of food and beverages on the premises by restaurants, bars, and similar facilities in the unincorporated county. Restaurants in the unincorporated County are encouraged to offer take-out dining.

This proclamation goes into effect at 8 p.m. today and is in effect until midnight, March 31, 2020. During that time, the County and the County Health Department will review strategies and guidance for determining whether today’s action will need to be continued as is, modified or ended.

Additionally, the Board today ordered closed, theaters, indoor performance centers, museums, gyms and fitness centers and studios, and similar facilities. It also closed bingo halls, bowling alleys, indoor climbing or jumping facilities, skating rinks and other similar recreational and entertainment facilities.

Those closures are under the same timeline as restaurants and bars.

“Let’s be very clear, this is going to cause real pain in our community and the Board knows l that this will put people out of work. That is very painful to me personally, but I know it is the right thing to do. We  took these actions to protect the public health. We all take seriously the repercussions of our actions today,” said Pima County Board of Supervisors Chairman Richard Elías.

The proclamation passed today further strongly urges the faith community and houses of worship to limit gatherings on their premises and observe social distancing guidelines.

It also urges businesses and employers to follow social distancing and avoid gathering of more than 10 people in accordance with state and federal guidance.

For more information about the Board’s action and the County’s COVID-19 response, go to

MEDIA CONTACT: Communications Director Mark B. Evans, 520-724-3334,