Friday’s news items [council meeting agenda revised; continuity of government / operations] – 4/10/2020

Change | There’s an updated Borough Council meeting agenda for Tuesday’s meeting: Appears this item’s been added: “Authorization to sign the Petition to postpone the 2020 Upset Tax Sale for a period not to exceed 1 year.” The meeting agenda and supporting documents packet are posted at the Borough Website.

“Continuity of operations” planning | Everybody should have made plans for “what if” contingencies when disaster or setbacks happen. Businesses, government and school districts typically have written plans. School districts are mandated to have “continuity of operations plans” by the State Department of Education. Columbia Borough School District’s “Continuity of Education Plan” is posted at the District’s Website.

Big questions | All school districts will be faced with lots of of anxious parents’ questions about education, graduation and more — some of which is addressed in this Lancaster Online interview with the State Department of Education Secretary. Last year, Lancaster County government trained and challenged its departments to develop continuity of government services planning. Elements of the plan for each department are shown here


Explained in depth | “Continuity of Government Plans and Continuity of Operations Plans for businesses and organizations help them to continue providing their essential services during times of crisis. ‘A Continuity of Government plan is a Continuity of Operations Plan for government — the term Continuity of Operations Plan will be used to refer to plans for both government and business here.) Governments and businesses use these plans to prepare for disasters, such as a pandemic, during times when it is difficult or impossible to operate normally.’

“Experts estimate that at the peak of a pandemic, 40 percent of the workforce will
be unavailable to work. Employees may be sick themselves or caring for sick family
members. So it is almost certain that key government and business leaders, and many
essential workers, will be unable to work for a period of time. At the same time, there
will be higher demands for some essential services, such as healthcare. Failure to continue basic services during a pandemic will result in many unnecessary deaths. Municipalities that create Continuity of Operations Plans ahead of time will be able to reduce the number of deaths by accomplishing the following:

  • Maintaining strong government leadership
  • Helping to feed their populations
  • Continuing to provide clean water, electricity, sanitation, communications and
    other basic services
  • Continuing to provide healthcare services to those who need them most.’

continuity of government


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