The Victorias and Talisay city halls have been temporarily closed for disinfection after several employees tested positive for COVID-19.
On Monday, Victorias City recorded 37 new COVID-19 cases, its highest in a single day.
Mayor Francis Frederick Palanca said 21 of those who tested positive on Monday were Victorias city government employees — the city engineer and 14 others at her office and six from the General Services Offices.
The 21 have been quarantined and contact tracing is ongoing, he added.
To prevent the further spread of the virus, Palanca issued an executive order temporarily closing the Victorias City Hall , including annexed buildings and officers, for disinfection and contact tracing from Tuesday to Friday, May 4 to 7.
All Victorias City government officials and employees were directed to strictly stay at home until May 7, and adopt a work-from-home arrangement, he said.
“We have a super spreader”, Palanca said, pointing out that many city government employees frequent a makeshift coffee area at a tailoring shop behind the Victorias Cultural Center.
A COVID-19 positive individual working at the tailoring shop succumbed to the virus and her companion also tested positive, the mayor said.
Palanca said when the Victorias City Hall reopens on May 10, he may keep the workforce down to 50 percent to further prevent the spread of the virus.
Victorias City had 99 active COVID-19 cases Tuesday, City Administrator Dino Acuña said.
Meanwhile, Mayor Neil Lizares also ordered the one-day closure of the Talisay City Hall Wednesday, May 5, for disinfection.
He said the city had 39 new COVID-19 cases , including two city hall employees assigned to the City Treasurer’s Office and Community Affairs Office.
Work at the city hall will resume on Thursday, May 6, except for the City Treasurer’s Office and Community Affairs Office that will stay closed until further notice, Lizares said.*