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Larimer County Declares Formal Emergency to Access Local, State and Federal Resources for COVID-19 Response

The Chair of the Larimer County Board of Commissioners made a formal emergency declaration on Friday, March 13, 2020, in anticipation of the imminent impacts from the COVID-19 public health emergency. The declaration will be considered for ratification by the full Board of Commissioners on Tuesday, March 17, 2020.

While the number of positive tests in Larimer County remains low, officials believe that community spread is the next phase of this event. The critical measure of a formal declaration was taken in order for the County to tap into local, state and federal resources only available by emergency declaration. An emergency declaration will allow the County to access medical supplies from the state Emergency Operations Center and hospital supplies from the National Stockpile.

“As a county, we are trying to get ahead of community spread and mitigate risk to our residents. An emergency declaration shows that we are making our response the priority,” says Tom Gonzales, Public Health Director for Larimer County Department of Health and Environment. 

Larimer County has two mechanisms at its disposal during crisis events, an emergency declaration or a disaster declaration. 

“An emergency declaration is often used in advance or anticipation of the imminent impact of an incident that threatens our community. For example, an emergency will be declared before a hurricane hits to ensure all resources are available to the community,” said Larimer County Office of Emergency Management, Lori Hodges. “A disaster declaration is reactive, signed after an event occurs when you have known damages and destruction.  Larimer County signed the emergency declaration to assure all resources are available for this emerging threat.”

The official emergency declaration can be found here.

The Larimer County Department of Health and Environment has COVID-19 updates, information and resources online at

Published on: 
Friday, March 13, 2020 - 7:06pm
Contact Details:

Michelle Bird
Public Affairs Director
(970) 498-7015

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Larimer County, Colorado

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Fort Collins, CO 80521
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