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The original item was published from 3/20/2020 5:12:31 PM to 3/21/2020 12:00:08 AM.

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Posted on: March 20, 2020

[ARCHIVED] McFarland Statement on COVID-19 City response prior to Council

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Murfreesboro Mayor Shane McFarland made the following statement Thursday, March 19 prior to the City Council meeting:

“I want to make a couple quick comments before we get started. We are meeting tonight. There’s very few of us that are here. The Council is [limited]. We’re practicing our “social distancing” that the CDC and our President and our Governor are recommending. But at the end of the day we still have business that we have to do inside our City. And I want to make sure that the residents know that there’s been a lot of planning over the last month that has gone into the things that all of our staff have been working on for essential services to be provided inside of our City. With that we want to make sure our employees are safe, our emergency service providers are safe, our residents are safe. There’s been a lot of sentiment out there on why the City’s not closed down. Why have we not shut down restaurants or we have not shut down all these different things. And what I want to tell you and have shared with the Council members: We don’t have the authority to be able to shut down every restaurant [at this point] or business inside the City of Murfreesboro. What we have to be able to do is to let the public know these are the CDC guidelines, this is what the State is recommending and that’s what we want to stick with. I can tell you we’ve had things inside our community that we have fought before and that we’ve prevailed. The guidance, the cooperation between our local municipalities, I’ve been able to be in meetings with all of our mayors over the last couple of weeks. The cooperation with our County, the cooperation with our State and the cooperation with our Federal government, I feel very confident that anything that comes along, we’re going to be able to handle. Do any of us up here know exactly what’s going to happen, we don’t! I was sharing with the council members that we don’t have control over a lot of these things. What we want to ask our residents is that we want to do is be smart, to be able to take the precautions that they need to be able to take, not only individually but with their families. The thing I want to impress upon our residents, we need to pray! We need to pray for those that are serving our community. The healthcare providers that are serving all of our residents, they all have families. Emergency service, our firefighters, our police officers, our Rutherford County EMS, our Sheriff’s Department, those individuals are still going to be on the job! And making sure that essential services are provided. If you’re watching this we want to make sure that you know the Rutherford County Health Department. I talk with the Director, Dana Garrett, every single day. That number is 615-898-7880. You can get any guidance from the County Health Department. . . .Our communications team has been working non-stop to make sure that our citizens are educated and are updated. You can go to On our homepage you have a link to go to a Coronavirus section and there is more information. Any information you’ll need is on there. CDC, WHO, our State government, our State Health Department, our County Health Department. Please make sure and utilize those. All of us who are up here, all of the Council members, we all are active on social media. We all check our e-mails. If there’s anything that you have a question about, do not hesitate to contact us. If we don’t know the answers we will get you the answers. Its times like this that we all come together, and I think that’s something that this City has shown that we can do, we will do and that we’ll work together!”

The full statement is viewable in the City of Murfreesboro Media Center at

Persons with medical concerns are urged to call the Rutherford County Health Department at 615-898-7880 or their primary healthcare provider to be connected with appropriate resources. Testing centers on the list provided by the County Thursday are no longer available sites.

Follow the latest Coronavirus information from the City of Murfreesboro and our State and Federal partners,

As the City of Murfreesboro battles this threat with the rest of the national community, we continue to urge all citizens to follow CDC practices:

  • Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds.
  • Cover your cough and sneezing.
  • Avoid touching your face, eyes, nose or mouth with unwashed hands.
  • Practice social distancing.
  • Stay home when you are sick and call your physician or the County Health Department at 615-898-7880 or the State Information Hotline: 1-877-857-2945 for guidance.
  • Stay home if you come into contact with someone who is sick.
  • Clean and disinfect objects (e.g., cell phone, computer) and high touch surfaces.
  • Make sure you continue to have adequate supplies, such as medications, if needed.

Follow City of Murfreesboro closings and cancellations, visit

For information announced daily by the Governor and Tennessee Department of Health, visit

Click here to access the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) COVID-19 webpage for the most up to date information and guidelines:

For City News online, visit

Tennessee Department of Health Information (Link)
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