By Ellen Fike, Cowboy State Daily
Gov. Mark Gordon warned Wyoming state employees that a second shutdown of government buildings and businesses could occur if coronavirus cases in the state continue to rise.
In a letter sent out to all state employees on Thursday, Gordon expressed concern about the fact that there has been a “significant” spike in cases across the state, as well as in government offices.
At least 20 state employees tested positive for the virus since last week and 152 state employees have requested administrative leave due to a positive test.
“The rising number of positive cases and quarantines among state employees is impacting our operations, our ability to deliver products and services, and is resulting in numerous building closures,” Gordon wrote in the letter.
All but one employee of the state’s central mail room are in quarantine.
Last week, portions of seven state buildings in Laramie County were closed for coronavirus decontamination, two of them for a second time.
“Our ability to provide critical services across the state is critical to Wyoming’s economy and to ensure the public health and safety of its communities,” Gordon wrote. “The impacts to our state workforce…foreshadow the possibility of future business closures due to staffing shortages and sick workers. No one wants to see that.”
He reiterated the point that he and state public health officer Dr. Alexia Harrist have been driving home over the last six months, such as wearing a face covering when in public spaces, physically distance when possible and stay home from work when sick.
Gordon will likely have a news conference this week to discuss the rising coronavirus cases, office spokesman Michael Pearlman told Cowboy State Daily on Monday.