Joplin to allow bars to reopen, council hires consultant to aid in COVID-19 impact

Joplin Area Coronavirus

JOPLIN, Mo. — The Joplin City Council decides to allow bars to open earlier than expected under the city’s coronavirus recovery plan.

After an almost two hour discussion, the council voted to amend the plan 6 to 3.

It allows bars to reopen now as long as they follow social distancing guidelines.

Under the previous plan, bars would have had to wait four weeks to reopen.

Then, would only be allowed to have 25% occupancy.

A large group filled council chambers in support of opening bars early.

This change takes effect immediately.

Also, the Joplin City Council decided to hire Guidehouse LLP to help with covid-19 response.

The group will aide in the recovery process for both the public and private sector.

This will cover everything from non-profit organizations, city departments, housing and businesses.

The group will work closely with city leaders to see which areas were most impacted by the coronavirus and how to move them forward.

Joplin city leaders also discussed whether baseball will be able to be played this year.

Under the current city plan, sporting events can take place with only 25% of occupancy.

That would be about 200 people in the Wendell Redden Stadium.

It would also limit visitors to traveling less than 50-miles from Joplin.

Tuesday the Joplin Sports Authority asked if those restrictions could be expanded.

Allowing players not to count toward the 200 occupancy and to limit visitors to less than 75-miles from Joplin.

Joplin city leaders did not move forward with any decisions.

There is a baseball tournament scheduled for May 31st.

It will be played under the current guidelines.

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