Yankton gives businesses the power to reopen

Coronavirus

YANKTON, S.D. (KELO) — All Yankton businesses were allowed to reopen today after the City commission voted in favor of removing all regulations, restrictions and closures by a 7-2 decision yesterday.

The City of Yankton gave businesses the power to reopen.

“Plan on following the CDC’s guidelines, the City’s and the State’s as well. So we’re just thankful the city gave us a chance to develop into this new normal,” Exclusive Tan & Beauty Owner Taylor Harmelink said.

But not all business owners agree on reopening.

“My sister and I decided we are going to remain close until it’s deemed safe, or some equipment becomes available. Because at this point in time, it’s very hard for our medical professionals to even get those those things,” Studio D Co-Owner Dawn Kabella said.

On Monday, the City’s Health Board recommended that the previous ordinance which closed some businesses be extended through May 14th.

“Our numbers have not actually been climbing. So we thought if we had that two weeks, we would see, have a better idea of what the picture was. If we were still holding steady, had we started to drop, those things would have definitely played into our next decision,” Yankton City Health Board member Dr. Mary Milroy said.

The commission ruled with the Health Board in a majority decision allowing pet groomers, tanning salons and hair salons to reopen. But after Governor Noem issued an executive order on Tuesday, the commission brought Monday’s ruling back to a vote yesterday, and ruled 7-2 in favor of allowing businesses to reopen.

“I’m not at all questioning the medical field. All I’m saying is let businesses make their own decisions based on their professional advice, and also the person,” Commissioner Jake Hoffner said.

“I think a couple more weeks would help us to see what is going to happen with infections. All the medical experts are telling us to wait. Our health board advised us to wait, and I think we should wait,” Commissioner Jerry Webber said.

But the restrictions can be put back into place.

“Within one meeting, all’s it would take is a resolution to implement restrictions again if we deem they are needed,” Mayor Nathan Johnson said.

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