County declares emergency for coronavirus

Casey S. Elliott
Monday, March 23, 2020

Beaverhead County Commissioner and Chairman Tom Rice declared an emergency for the county Monday, to allow its disaster emergency services personnel the flexibility they need to respond to the new coronavirus.

Rice issued the emergency declaration at the recommendation of Disaster Emergency Services (DES) Coordinator Tom Wagenknecht as a precautionary measure. Having the declaration in place gives the county added authority to seek federal and state emergency funding if necessary.

Montana code allows counties with an emergency declaration to seek an emergency levy of up to two mills in a year. That must be approved unanimously by the commission; Rice stressed the commissioners are not asking for an emergency levy with the declaration. If they do, it would be discussed and voted on in a public meeting.

Read more in Wednesday's Dillon Tribune.