The president of the Walton Area Chamber of Commerce, Megan Harrison, successfully advised the Board of Walton County Commissioners, Walton County legal counsel, and administration to add an updated addendum to the pre-existing emergency declaration executive order that declares property damage related to COVID-19. Resolutions 2020-25 and 2020-29 make no mention of property damage being caused by coronavirus, but the newly added resolution, approved on Tuesday, April 7, 2020, now states:
“WHEREAS, conditions exist require the extension of the initial declaration of a state of local emergency because of the propensity of the novel coronavirus to spread person to person and also because the novel coronavirus physically is causing property damage due to its proclivity to attached to surfaces for prolonged periods of time;”
The updated verbiage was proposed in an effort to assist local businesses with filing claims related to business interruption. Without some property damage, most policies will not allow recovery for these local businesses under their terms. The county order is reviewed every seven days, however the language regarding property damage should not change.
“In an effort to provide potential business interruption claim coverage justification to our business community, we felt it was appropriate to ask the Walton County Commission to add language relating to property damage caused by COVID-19 to the County’s emergency order,” Harrison said. “I am pleased they took the suggestion into consideration and adopted the revised language. The Walton Area Chamber of Commerce is committed to supporting efforts to advocate on behalf of our business community and I hope this effort will prove to be beneficial for some in our area.”
To learn more about the emergency declaration executive order and to stay up to date on county Walton County Emergency Management, visit https://www.co.walton.fl.us.