The city of Dunwoody is waiting for Gov. Brian Kemp’s response on whether to temporarily shut down restaurants and bars as a way to slow the spread of the coronavirus, according to Mayor Lynn Deutsch.

“We’re waiting to see what the governor does over the next 24 to 48 hours. I believe this should be a regional response at a minimum and ideally a statewide response,” Deutsch said March 16.

“A statewide or regional approach makes it easy for everyone to understand what is happening and makes the [rules] easier to implement,” Deutsch said.

Dunwoody’s decision to wait contrasts with the city of Brookhaven’s action on March 16 to call for its own citywide “state of emergency.” As part of Brookhaven’s state of emergency, it ordered the immediate shut down of dine-in eating and drinking at local restaurants, bars and entertainment venues until March 30. Take-out and delivery for restaurants are still allowed.

Brookhaven police and code enforcement officials are being sent to inform businesses about the ordinance within the city limits.

Brookhaven Mayor John Ernst said in a press release that he convened a conference call on March 15 with the DeKalb Municipal Association that included Deutsch and mayors from Avondale Estates, Decatur, Doraville, Pine Lake and Stone Mountain. The DMA lobbies for DeKalb cities to state officials.

The DMA approved making a request to the governor to implement a statewide restaurant bar and bar suspension.

“Suspending restaurant and bar dine-in services will have only minimal effect if the state does not enact a similar, socially responsible ban,” Ernst said in a press release.

Dyana Bagby

Dyana Bagby is a staff writer for Reporter Newspapers and Atlanta Intown.