OLATHE, Kan. — Johnson County, Kansas, leaders are no longer following Governor Laura Kelly’s reopening plan, which means all business can now reopen. But local leaders are appealing for the county to change that.
Johnson County is one of the few that has decided to drop Governor Kelly’s phased reopening approach. That means no more crowd restrictions, and every business can now reopen.
Up until two days ago, Johnson County – and the rest of the state – have been in a modified Phase 2.0.
Crowds were limited to 15 people; bars and nightclubs were still closed; same with swimming pools and festivals, concert venues and summer camps.
But then two days ago, Governor Kelly gave the power to reopen to the counties.
Some such as Wyandotte County will continue following her phased in approach.
Others such as Johnson County have decided not to, calling her plan legally unenforceable.
Those frustrated by the government’s slow approach to reopening the economy are glad every business can now reopen with no crowd limits.
But health officials warn this could cause a spike on COVID-19 cases in the near future.
Cities could begin passing their own restrictions, but with 19 different cities in Johnson County, it could become quite confusing.
Because of this, local elected officials have banded together and sent a letter to Johnson County Commissioners asking them to go back to enforcing the Governor’s reopening plan.
There are 25 officials from 11 different cities including Overland Park, Shawnee, Prairie Village and Lenexa who have signed it.
The letter says, in part, “We are still urgently in the midst of this health crisis and will for some time. The road to recovery will take years of good stewardship, but its foundation is being constructed by your decisions today.”
The Johnson County Board of Commissioners will meet via Zoom at 9:30 a.m. Thursday to discuss this issue.
If they do go back to the Governor’s Plan, Phase 3, bars, clubs, pools and summer camps could reopen as soon as June 8.
If they don’t go back to her plan, all those places will be able to reopen now.