Board approves Phase 2 application, directs staff to prepare extension to emergency order

Wednesday, June 3, 2020

At yesterday's Benton County Commissioners meeting, the Board voted (3-0) to approve submitting Benton County’s application to enter Phase 2 of reopening and directed County staff to prepare an extension to the County’s declaration of emergency to October 31, 2020.

Phase 2 Reopening Application

On Tuesday, June 2, 2020, Benton County submitted an application to the Oregon Health Authority (OHA) for Phase 2 of reopening. If the application is approved the County could reopen as soon as Friday, June 5, 2020. Approval to move into Phase 2 is conditional on Benton County continuing to successfully meet the seven key benchmarks outlined by Governor Kate Brown for Phase 1, as well as the four new key benchmarks to enter Phase 2. These new benchmarks include:

  • 21 Days minimum in Phase 1.
  •  Timely contact tracing.
    • A minimum of 95% of all new cases must be contact traced within 24 hours.
  • Successful contact tracing.
    •  A minimum of 70% of new COVID-19 positive cases must be traced to an existing positive case.
  • No significant increase in incident cases or positivity.

Benton County submitted its Phase 1 application on May 11, 2020, and received approval for Phase 1 reopening on May 14, 2020.

Emergency Order

In addition to discussing Phase 2 reopening, the Board directed County staff to prepare an extension to the County’s declaration of emergency. The current declaration of emergency ends June 30, 2020. The proposed extension is for a period of 120 days, ending October 31, 2020.

County staff are implementing State guidelines for reopening, disseminating information to communities and businesses, and planning for the second wave of the COVID-19 virus that is expected for fall 2020. The extension will allow the County to assess the impact that students returning to school has on the infection rate in the community. 

Benton County declared a State of Emergency and activated a joint City of Corvallis and Benton County Emergency Operations Center on March 17, 2020.