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Phil Perry/Coal Valley News Boone County Commission President Eddie Hendricks signed a proclamation on Thursday declaring a local state of emergency amid the COVID-19 outbreak.

MADISON – The Boone County Commission has declared a local state of emergency facilitated by a resolution signed by Commission President Eddie Hendricks on Thursday.

A local state of emergency allows county officials to request state-level assistance and to coordinate resources to help the county maneuver the waters of the pandemic.

“This isn’t a time to panic and we encourage our citizens to look out for each other during the Coronavirus pandemic that our country is going through,” Hendricks said. “This is a time for us to be strong and to look out for our neighbors and stand together.”

Elected officials met with the commission to discuss ways to facilitate the continued operation of county government, according to county officials. Officials ask citizens who are feeling sick or who feel they have been exposed to the Coronavirus to not enter county offices.

Officials are urging citizens to use the courthouse switchboard at 304-369-3925, email and snail mail when possible. Taxes can be paid online by using boone.softwaresystems.com. Voter registration and changes to registration can be made at govotewv.com.

County clerk records can be viewed at boonecountyclerkwv.com, the assessor’s office can be accessed via boonecountyassessor.com and the Boone County Sheriff’s Office can be visited at boonewvsheriff.org.

“We encourage people to not enter the courthouse unless it is absolutely necessary,” Hendricks said.

The Commission President added that he encourages citizens to look out for elderly neighbors and family members as well as those with underlying medical conditions.

“We have more people at-risk in Boone County than you may find in other counties and we need to be cognizant of that,” Hendricks said. “For me personally, my dad is one of those people so I’ll be making sure he has everything he needs. We have to rally around people who are at greater risk.”

Boone County Commissioner Brett Kuhn spoke about the resolution and the positive meeting that brought elected officials together to share ideas and communicate concerns.

“The county commission wants to give as much flexibility to our elected officials as we possibly can,” Kuhn added. “We want them to be able to make decisions that are appropriate for their office. Our primary goal is to protect our employees and our citizens. We want to make absolutely certain that we don’t put either at risk.”

Visit boonecountywv.org/contacts.php for contact information for county offices or call the free resource line toll free at 1-844-71-Boone (1-844-712-6663) for more information.

Reporter Phil Perry can be reached at 304-307-2401 or at pperry@hdmediallc.com.