MORGANTOWN, W.Va. – Morgantown City officials held a press conference Monday afternoon to discuss its response to COVID-19. Mayor Bill Kawecki, City Manager Paul Brake, Police Chief Ed Preston and Fire Chief Mark Caravasas gathered to discuss steps the city of Morgantown will take as the virus continues to spread.

“In the interest of health and wellness of the community and our employees, we have decided to temporarily close city facilities and cancel most city public meetings, events, and programming from this time forward Monday, March 16th,” said Paul Brake, Morgantown City Manager.

Facilities such as the Morgantown Public Library, City Hall and Monongalia County Municipal Court will be closed effective immediately and expected to reopen, Monday, April 6.

“Unfortunately, my concern now is that this is going be in for the long haul,” said Morgantown Mayor, Bill Kawecki. “I’m worried about how long this will continue and what this will do not only to the community but also to our economy.”

All emergency services will remain intact and function as normal. If anyone needs to file a police report or pick up records the Morgantown police department has asked the public to call or email the police department and those needs will be dealt with electronically.

“We’re going to be using alternative police response for folks that just need to file a lost cell phone or a lost bicycle, type of things,” said Morgantown Police Chief, Ed Preston. We’ll take that over the telephone instead of having to dispatch an officer or you having to come into the station and it’ll actually make it a little more convenient on the public in general because they can stay at home or call in from their cell phone and we’ll take the report right there.”

The Morgantown Public Library also stated it has electronic options for those who wish to access content online.