The city of Sandy Springs has reported a COVID-19 exposure during a special called meeting held last Friday, Dec. 17.

Despite the exposure, Sandy Springs is set to hold an in-person council meeting tonight at 6 p.m.

“We do not have any information about where or how the person was exposed, only that someone who attended Friday’s meeting tested positive on Monday morning,” said Sandy Springs spokesperson Jason Fornicola.

“We haven’t received any reports of anyone experiencing symptoms,” he added. “City Council members and staff in attendance of Friday’s meeting will be tested in advance of tonight’s Council meeting.”

Fornicola said that city doesn’t have the legal authority to conduct the meeting virtually. That’s because virtual meetings were authorized previously under an executive order from Gov. Brian Kemp. There’s currently no executive order in place.

The public, however, can attend the council meeting virtually or in person.

“The city’s current plan is to continue the meeting with council physically present, but following COVID-19 protocols,” he said. “Any Council member attending virtually cannot vote.”

The agenda has several big items scheduled, including how City Council will direct staff to spend a $67 million budget surplus, as well as changes to zoning and building codes for three North End shopping centers.

Dontaye Carter, who had run unsuccessfully for Sandy Springs mayor in November, questioned why the city is holding the meeting in-person after the exposure. Carter had shared an email with Reporter Newspapers from the city’s fire department about the positive COVID-19 case from Friday’s meeting. He had attended the meeting.

“I can’t understand why we’re hosting this meeting publicly knowing that a vast majority of the people that are going to be in this room were exposed last Friday. And this is going to be a highly contested meeting today because of all the agenda items. We know that people are going to show up,” Carter said.

Update: This story was updated with comments from Sandy Springs spokesperson Jason Fornicola.

Bob Pepalis

Bob Pepalis covers Sandy Springs for Reporter Newspapers.