Curfew, closures other changes instituted in parish

Published 6:57 pm Tuesday, March 17, 2020

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NATCHEZ — Concordia Parish residents are now under a curfew from 10 p.m. to 5 a.m. until at least April 13.

The curfew is one of the statewide measures taken by Louisiana Gov. John Bel Edwards on Tuesday in an effort to reduce the spread of COVID-19 in Louisiana.

The Concordia Parish Office of Homeland Security and Emergency Preparedness said in a news release that it is cooperating with all authorities to enforce the governor’s emergency proclamation.

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In addition to the curfew, measures taken by the governor’s proclamation include:

4Limiting gatherings to no more than 50 people in a single place where individuals are in close proximity to each other

4Closing casinos, video poker establishments, bowling alleys, fitness centers, gyms movie theaters and bars

4Limiting restaurants to take-out, drive-through and delivery order. All state restaurants are closed to serving patrons on site.

4Hotel restaurants are restricted to room service only

In an emergency meeting Tuesday afternoon, the Vidalia town council and Mayor Buz Craft said the town will also be helping to enforce the governor’s actions.

The council members unanimously passed a resolution Tuesday declaring a public health emergency due to the current coronavirus outbreak in Louisiana and also gave Craft emergency powers during the public health emergency.

“I am glad to say that currently to our knowledge we have no reported case of coronavirus in our area,” Craft said during the meeting broadcast on social media.

As of 1 p.m. Tuesday, Louisiana had 171 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in 12 of 64 parishes and four deaths. At the same time, there were 0 reported cases of COVID-19 in Concordia, Tensas, Catahoula and Avoyelles parishes.

Craft said the curfew will not apply to first responders, healthcare workers and others who are working during the curfew hours. Craft said the curfew applies to residents of all ages.

“The curfew applies to those who just want to joy ride or have gatherings in the parking lot — whatever age you might be. Those will be prohibited,” Craft said.

The mayor said those who are out during the curfew will not be ticketed but will be asked to go home.

“That is for the safety of our people,” Craft said.

Information and updates about COVID-19 in Louisiana can be found on the town of Vidalia homepage at