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Update from Mayor Gardner on City’s response to his positive COVID test

File Photo | Minden City Hall

As announced earlier this morning, Minden’s Mayor Terry Gardner has been infected with COVID-19. Even with his current ailment, Gardner took the time to contact the Minden Press-Herald to update the citizens on how the City is handling the situation. 

“Sunday, when I got my results back, the first thing I did was call and have City Hall completely sanitized. The whole complex. Upstairs, downstairs, every crack has been sanitized so our employees would have a safe work area. As far as testing employees, if they show symptoms we will send them to get tested,” said Gardner.

Unfortunately, one of the consequences of the Mayor being out sick is not being able to hold this month’s Council meetings, which would have been the first one with a full Council since March. The Mayor will not be able to return to work until he gets a negative on his COVID test.

“I’m going to get tested again this Friday. If I get a clear test I will be back to work on Monday, but I have to get a clear test before I go back to work,” said Gardner. 

The City does have an option to move forward with a City Council meeting without the Mayor, but currently, the Council cannot do that because there is no elected Mayor Pro Tem. Originally the Pro Tem was former Councilman Herbert Taylor of Dist. A, but since his resignation, the Council has yet to hold a proper City Council Meeting and thus have not been able to elect a new one.

Gardner also used the opportunity to reinforce how important it is that everyone follows proper social distancing guidelines and continues to wear masks. The Mayor stated that even though he took the proper precautions, he still got infected, showcasing that if everyone isn’t doing what they can to prevent the spread of the virus, it mitigates the efforts of those who are, and has very real consequences. If Minden’s leaders can get infected with COVID-19, then it can just as easily happen to any of its citizens. 

“Every event that I went to I always wore a mask. When I went shopping I wore a mask. When I got back I used hand sanitizers. It’s important to know that nobody is immune from this disease. Even if you’ve followed safe practices, you can still get it,” said Gardner.

“It’s important to understand that even though our parish as a whole has had low COVID cases, it’s still out there, and we need to be cautious, wear masks, wash our hands, and practice social distancing.”