DALLAS, Texas — The Dallas County Commissioners Court has called for a emergency meeting on Thursday, October 16 at 2pm to request a state disaster declarationbecause of the Ebola crisis, FOX DFW reported. They will determine whether to request additional state funding and resources and if Governor Rick Perry should declare a local emergency.
Bloomberg reported that the county “has the potential to suffer widespread or severe damage, injury, loss or threat of life resulting from the Ebola virus,” according to a proposed draft of the declaration.
According to state law, a declaration of emergency activates the appropriate recovery and rehabilitation aspects of all applicable local or interjurisdictional emergency management plans and authorizes the furnishing of aid and assistance under the declaration, the Dallas Morning News reported. They added that the law says, “the county judge or mayor of a municipality may control ingress to and egress from a disasterarea under the jurisdiction and authority of the county judge or mayor and control the movement of persons and the occupancy of premises in that area.”
Declarations last up to seven days, and can be renewed by the Commissioners Court for longer than that. The emergency meeting appears to come in response to a second nurse contracting the deadly Ebola virus after treating Ebola patient zero, Thomas Duncan, at Texas Health Presbyterian Hospital in Dallas. He died on October 8.
According to FOX DFW, the costs to the county to treat Duncan, were more than $1 million. Since then, two healthcare workers who treated Duncan at the hospital tested positive for the Ebola virus. Nina Pham is being treated at the same Texas Health Presbyterian Hospital. Breitbart Texas reported that the latest nurse to contract the deadly virus, Amber Vinson, was airlifted to Atlanta for further treatment.
The 2pm meeting will be held at the County Administration Building, 411 Elm Street in Dallas.
The presiding County Judge is Clay Jenkins. Breitbart Texas reported that Jenkins visited Duncan’s apartment and then drove the victim’s Ebola exposed family to a new private home donated to them while they wait out the 21-day incubation period to see if they exhibit the symptoms of Ebola.
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