Saint Paul’s state of emergency regarding the COVID-19 pandemic officially ended on April 5. Since March 2020, Mayor Melvin Carter’s emergency declaration gave him authority to issue a wide range of executive orders, including facemask and vaccine requirements.

The orders changed skyway hours, imposed additional regulations on some types of businesses, changed an array of licensing requirements, and made it easier to close streets and use rights-of-way for sidewalk cafes. The orders also temporarily eliminated a petition requirement for many zoning and land-use requests. The end of the state of emergency means all of those orders have ceased.

City Council members agreed in February to set the end date for the state of emergency, raising concerns about the length of time it had gone on. The end to virtual meetings was announced by city officials in mid-March.

In a statement on April 5, Carter said it was a “huge relief” to have the city’s state of emergency come to an end. Minnesota’s pandemic state of emergency ended last summer, but Minneapolis Mayor Jacob Frey retains his emergency powers.

COVID-19 case rates have continued to trend downward statewide. For an update on the COVID situation in Minnesota, visit the state Department of Health website at tinyurl.com/2bpv65tm.

 

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