COVID-19 meeting

People gather in the council chambers Thursday morning at Town Hall before the start of a joint meeting with the town of Jackson and Teton County commissioners to upcoming events in Jackson due to COVID-19. On Saturday, the town council will rehash that meeting for smaller events, but their message was clear: don't come. Watch from home and practice smart social distancing.

Late Friday night, town officials called a Saturday meeting to discuss 'additional measures' to prevent community transmission of COVID-19.

Jackson Mayor Pete Muldoon said the purpose of the meeting, set for 11 a.m. Saturday, is twofold: to determine whether, or when, to ban gatherings of 100 or more people, and to make sure the town has its "ducks in a row" for keeping the council operating.

"The state of Utah banned gatherings of over 100 people within the entire state," Muldoon said Friday night. "We're in their region, so it's something we should just have on our radar."

As for keeping the government running, Muldoon said town officials wanted to figure out how to still hold meetings, even if that meant doing so remotely and take public comment if the meeting structure changed.

The mayor said the goal was to make sure "the public's still involved," while "making sure there's not 100 people in a room together." That was the case during Thursday's public meeting about larger county-wide events. Ultimately, those events were canceled, preceding cancelations throughout the day Friday.

He also noted that while the meeting will be public, officials are encouraging people not to come and instead tune in from home.

The last-minute nature of the meeting means the town's usual live stream may not be available, but Muldoon hopes to have videoconferencing set up tomorrow for people to watch, likely Facebook Live. Check back tomorrow for updates.

The meeting will mostly include representatives from town government, but Teton County Board of County Commissioners Chair Natalia D. Macker will also attend as a liaison from the county.

The News&Guide is providing COVID-19 articles free of charge to non-subscribers as a community service. The News&Guide has created a special page on our website to find all local coronavirus coverage and we'll send out the Healthwise newsletter each morning with the latest articles. Stay informed, stay calm and wash your hands early and often. — Eds.

Contact Billy Arnold at 732-7063 or

Teton County Reporter

Previously the Scene editor, Billy Arnold made the switch to the county beat where he's interested in exploring Teton County as a model for the rest of the West. When he can, he still writes about art, music and whatever else suits his fancy.

(6) comments

Konrad Lau

I am not quite sure what all the debate is over.

This is a communicable disease spread by droplets of human fluid containing virus being inhaled into the lungs or otherwise absorbed by mucous membranes (i.e. eye or sinus tissue).

The virus remains virulent for up to three days on cool hard surfaces and hours when floating in the air.

I would think the term “large groups” would be anything larger than one’s own family gathering at the dinner table.

Sadly, there are perhaps thousands of folks walking around who have contracted the virus and don’t know it. If thirty percent of adults do not wash their hands after using the toilet and God knows how many children don’t, I would consider anyone a possible transmitter…anyone no matter their education level or social status.

No cinemas, no grocery stores, no football games, no basketball games, no political meetings (scratch those Communism classes), no schools until the crest has been reached.

Locally, there is a woman who contracted the disease at a casino buffet on March 10th…on March 10th no less!

What? She didn’t know there was a killer lurking?

Richard Jones

So let me get this straight. The town is calling a public meeting to discuss the need for limiting public gatherings. Although open to the public, they recommend people not attend but watch it from home. Oh, except the normal live feed may not be available.

WTF. Have y'all lost any sense of self awareness?

Paul Bryant

I’d like to know what Jackson thinks about travelers coming to the area next week, had plans for hill climbs and now debating whether we should cancel the trip all together

JOhn Smothers

One other thing the town of jackson should consider is their work force. How it will impact year round staff, seasonal staff, and ect. If the town closes alot of bussiness then what. Most workers in Jackson have 2 or even 3 jobs to make ends meet. How are the workers suppose to make ends meet if their employer closes or even reduces their workforce. Again 2 or 3 jobs to make ends meet.


Most of the places close next month anyway and the place empties.

Alf Rie

What about those of us who work year round? Which I

would bet is the majority of permanent residents in the town. Those of us who live here and have done so for an extended period of time, perhaps grown up in this area, should be fine because most other places close anyways? There is absolutely no logic to your comment when it comes to the group I alluded to. Without the income we are used to recieving on a regular basis, many of us are at risk of a financial crisis, as OP was alluding to. There needs to be other things taking place in order to ensure that doesn't happen. As Muldoon himself said yesterday, this is what they are there for. This is why they're the elected officials. Keeping the town safe doesn't stop at preventing the spread of the virus, it includes enacting things that will alleviate the hardships caused by said decisions. Middle schoolers could come up with this same idea to close non-essential businesses, it's not good enough. If they don't come up with something soon they will have failed the community. This is one of the wealthiest areas in the world, the resources are obviously available. If they are not, then how does the town's public health coordinator make just under 6 figures annually?

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