COVID- 19 OPERATIONS GUIDELINES

1. Purpose of COVID-19 Operations Guidelines

City Council has adopted staff recommendations for employee and visitor protocol within City facilities. The Guidelines are subject to review and modification upon new or additional information or guidance from the public health authorities, including the Center for Disease Control (CDC) and the North Dakota Department of Health. 

In developing the Guidelines, the City referred to CDC recommendations, the State of North Dakota’s Smart Restart guidance, and the policies and procedures of other state agencies and/or political subdivisions.

2. Staffing Issues

A. On-Site Protocols
Employees should not come to work when sick.

Employees should practice healthy handwashing and hygiene habits, including the regular disinfection of commonly touched surfaces.

Employees are required to have their temperature taken upon entering a City facility. If an employee has a temperature 100.4 or above, the individual will not be allowed to remain in the City facility.

During the course of employment, City employees are required to wear masks pursuant to the “Resolution Adopting a Temporary Employment Policy Regarding Mask Usage” (hereinafter “Temporary Mask Policy”), which was approved by the City Council on August 17, 2020; see also Section 2(b).

Employees should try to limit in-person meetings by utilizing conference call options, email, Teams, etc. 

 

B. Temporary Mask Policy for City Employees

  • Generally
    During the course of employment, City employees are required to wear masks pursuant to the Temporary Mask Policy.

    Employees who are first responders are required to follow internal department protocols which, to the extent possible, shall be consistent with the Temporary Mask Policy
  •  Public Buildings
    City employees should attempt to maintain a six-foot distance from other individuals (employees, visitors, etc.) when working in a public building.

    If a City employee’s job requires them to be closer than six feet from another individual, the City employee is required to wear a mask or face covering.

    If a City employee enters an area where it is not possible to maintain a six-foot distance from another individual (hallway, elevator, etc.), the City employee is required to wear a mask or face covering.

  •  Public Vehicles
    City employees should use separate vehicles when possible.

    If multiple people are in the same vehicle and a six-foot distance from another individual cannot be maintained, City employees are required to wear masks or face coverings.

  •  Private Buildings
    City employees should avoid entering private buildings, when possible.

    City employees should attempt to maintain a six-foot distance from other individuals when working in a private building.

    If a City employee’s job requires them to work in a private building and a six-foot distance cannot be maintained from another individual, the City employee is required to wear a mask or face covering.

    City employees are strongly encouraged to wear masks or face coverings in private buildings when the property owner/management recommends or requests masks or face coverings to be worn.

  • Outside/Open-Air
    City employees should attempt to maintain a six-foot distance from other individuals when working outdoors.

    If a City employee is working outside and cannot maintain a six-foot distance from a member of the public, the City employee is required to wear a mask or face covering.

    If a City employee is working outside and cannot maintain a six-foot distance from another City employee, masks are strongly recommended, but not required.

  • Reasonable Accommodations
    City employees who require a related reasonable accommodation to the Temporary Mask Policy should notify their supervisor, who will refer them to Human Resources.

  • Miscellaneous
    City employees shall carry the appropriate mask or face covering with them while on duty.

    City employees shall wear masks or face coverings and clean masks or face coverings in accordance with the CDC recommendations, which can be located at the CDC website

    Mask usage may be discontinued if there is a safety concern or situation that is immediately dangerous to life, safety, or health.

    If a situation arises that is not addressed specifically by the Temporary Mask Policy, an employee should work with his or her supervisor and Human Resources to determine a solution which complies with the spirit and intent of the Temporary Mask Policy to the greatest extent possible.

    City employees shall work with their respective supervisor to address any concerns with the Temporary Mask Policy and/or compliance with the Temporary Mask Policy by others. 
  • Non-Compliance
    Refusal to wear a mask or face covering when directed by a supervisor, under the direction of the Temporary Mask Policy, or in accordance with departmental procedures, may subject an employee to disciplinary action under Chapter 6 of the City of Minot Employee Manual.

 

C. Working from Home 

Working from home will be considered on a case-by-case basis, based on the employee’s job responsibilities and the City’s needs. If an employee wants to be considered for working from home, he or she should contact his or her supervisor.

If an employee has an underlying health condition, the employee should contact his or her supervisor, who will refer him or her to Human Resources. 

 D. Work-Related Travel

Any work-related travel must be approved, in advance, by the City Manager. 

 E. Continuity of Government

Each department has developed a continuity of government plan specific to the department. The plans are subject to change, as circumstances change. 

 F. COVID-19 Emergency Leave 

Effective March 16, 2020, the City Council approved emergency pay related to COVID-19 absences.  If an employee has questions about qualifications for COVID-19 related emergency leave, he or she should contact his or her supervisor, who will refer him or her to Human Resources. 

 

3. Public Access to City Facilities 

Most City facilities are currently open to the public.  The City Council approved a “Resolution Adopting a Community-Wide Mask Directive” on August 17, 2020, directing residents and visitors to wear masks in our community in an effort the reduce the spread of COVID-19.  City employees interacting with members of the public are required to wear masks if they are unable to keep a six-foot distance and it is strongly encouraged that visitors also wear masks.  Disposable masks are available to visitors at City facilities. 

Windows or temporary panels are in place in lobby areas of City facilities to protect visitors and employees. 

The Fire Department, Police Department, and Water Treatment facilities are not currently open to the public in an additional effort to reduce the spread of COVID-19 in those City facilities. 

 

4. Meetings

A. Public Meetings

Public meetings are open and in-person presence is permitted. Markings are in place in the Council Chambers to identify and facilitate recommended social distancing.

Virtual accommodations are being made for those who are unable or uncomfortable participating in person. For an accommodation, members of the public should contact Derek Hackett, Public Information Officer at derek.hackett@minotnd.org, or Kelly Matalka, City Clerk at kelly.matalka@minotnd.org.

B. Internal/External Meetings

City employees are encouraged to hold virtual meetings rather than in-person meetings, when possible.  If in-person meetings are required and participants are unable to keep a six-foot distance, City employees are required to wear masks and it is strongly encouraged that visitors also wear masks during the meeting.

 

5. Building Maintenance

City Building Maintenance employees have implemented enhanced cleaning schedules to sanitize commonly-touched surfaces multiple times per day.

Hand sanitizer stations have been placed throughout City facilities.

Air filters were replaced prior to City facilities re-opening to the public; filters are checked weekly and replaced when necessary.

Signage has been posted throughout City facilities encouraging employees and visitors to practice healthy handwashing and hygiene habits.

6. First Responders

The Fire Department, Police Department, and Public Works Department have implemented internal department policies relating to COVID-19. 

Police Department Additional Directives

 7. Minot Public Library

 The Minot Public Library is open to the public.   The Library Board has adopted rules and regulations relating to COVID-19.  See attached.

 8. Municipal Court 

 Municipal Court is open and has implemented additional precautions in response to COVID-19. The Judge and Prosecutor sit behind plexiglass panels, markings are in place in the courtroom to identify and facilitate recommended social distancing and, enhanced cleaning techniques are in place for commonly-touched surfaces or items.  If individuals at Municipal Court are unable to keep a six-foot distance, City employees are required to wear masks and it is strongly encouraged that visitors also wear masks during the meeting. Municipal Court employees have encouraged payment of fines and fees by telephone to reduce the traffic in the lobby area of Municipal Court. 

 9. Transit

City Transit is open and has implemented additional precautions in response to COVID-19.  City drivers sit behind a plastic barrier to prevent interaction with other individuals when loading, unloading, and during transit of passengers.  If City drivers are not behind the plastic barrier and are unable to maintain a six-foot distance from other individuals, the City drivers are required to wear masks or face coverings.

Additional cleaning measure have been implemented, including daily fogging and wipe down/disinfecting between transfers.   Sanitizer stations are available for users of the transit system. 

Sanitizer stations are available for all users of the City Transit. 

City Transit is encouraging City Transit users to buy Transit passes in advance rather than using cash on the City busses.

10. Assessor’s Office

The Assessor’s Office will refrain from conducting interior reviews of residential properties.   Employees will continue to use secondary information, telephone interviews, and exterior reviews to collect necessary property data on homes. 

11. Community Development

Community Development (Planning; Inspections) are encouraging submission of applications and plans electronically, when permissible. Employees are also encouraging virtual meetings with developers and applicants. 

 12. Finance Department

 Finance Department is encouraging alternative methods to pay bills, including autopay, phone, mail, and the drop-box at City Hall.