Metro Services affected by COVID-19

A number of Metro services have been affected by the state of emergency instituted by the governor and mayor.  Included are a few of which we are aware:

State government

On Monday, Tennessee Gov. Bill Lee, Lt. Gov. Randy McNally and Speaker Cameron Sexton issued the following statement:

“Over the last week, we have remained in close contact with the state’s health leaders, and we have continued to carefully monitor the complex and aggressive COVID-19 virus in Tennessee. The latest guidance from both the CDC and the Department of Health requires us to take unprecedented action. In the best interests of public health, we have jointly decided to limit all remaining legislative business to fulfilling our constitutional requirement of passing a balanced budget, and any associated actions that will ensure Tennessee can keep its doors open. This is a serious time for our state and country, and we all must make adjustments in response to this threat. Our approach will take into account the unique public health challenges this complex virus presents, as well as the economic disruption likely to occur as a result of its spread. Passing an amended budget now and recessing will allow the General Assembly to focus on an immediate plan of action, while still determining needs down the road. This pathway forward should only be reserved for extraordinary circumstances. We will continue operating out of an abundance of caution and take additional action if it becomes necessary.”

Metro Office of Assessments

Nashville & Davidson County Assessor of Property Vivian Wilhoite has issued a temporary end to walk-in constituency services until further notice. Assessor Wilhoite encourages constituents with questions or comments about their property and property values to call, email or mail the Assessor’s office.

“The coronavirus pandemic has caused us to rethink our normal everyday operations,” said Assessor Wilhoite. “While we are not yet closed, until then, we want to do all that we can to protect the community and our staff by following procedures suggested by medical professionals during these challenging times.”

Property owners or anyone with questions or comments regarding their property or property values are encouraged to contact the Metro Office of Assessments by mail, phone or email rather than in person. Contact the office at 615-862-6080, or <assessorweb@nashville.gov>. The mailing address for the Assessor’s office is P.O. Box 196305, Nashville, Tenn. 37219-6305.

If you need to drop off materials, such as reports, deliveries or documents, a table has been set up at the front entrance to the Office of Assessments to receive such items. Additionally, hearings and appeal proceedings previously scheduled to be held in the Assessor’s office would proceed as scheduled until further notice.

Metro Parks

All Metro Parks’ facilities and offices will be closed to the public through Monday, April 6. The planned re-opening date (April 6) is contingent upon the impact of the coronavirus. The closures impact all facilities or offices with a close person-to-person public component.

Metro Parks Director Monique Odom said: “This continues to be a fluid situation for the entire county. We’ll monitor this situation and make public updates as needed, but for now our facilities and offices are closed for the safety of the entire community. We had so looked forward to having our kids in for Spring Break, but for now public health is our number one priority.”

Golf courses, parks, greenways and dog parks will remain open. However, patrons are urged to use the social distancing protocols recommended by the Center for Disease Control. The CDC defines social distancing as it applies to COVID-19 as “maintaining distance (approximately six feet or two meters) from others when possible.”

Hadley Hermitage and East Park Community Centers are official FEMA sites and will remain open to those tornado victims needing assistance.

The Aquatic Center at the Centennial Sportsplex closed last night after a patron tested positive for COVID-19. Currently, the department’s Maintenance Team is spraying and disinfecting every surface in the aquatics area utilizing the protocol established by the CDC. The cleaning process will continue for the rest of the day.

Anyone having questions regarding facilities, programs, permits, reservations, workshops, events, and classes should feel free to call Metro Parks at 615-862-8400 or check their website at <www.nashville.gov/Parks-and-Recreation.aspx>.

Also, the following is in effect due to the tornadoes.

Metro Water Services will suspend cut-offs and waive late fees for the month of March.

Customers who have a good credit history with Metro Water Services and have found themselves experiencing financial hardship due to the storm may request a payment plan for outstanding balances by calling 615-862-4600.

This information is also posted on the storm response webpage.

Nashville Electric Service (NES) suspended all disconnects, including disconnects for nonpayment, following the tornadoes last Tuesday. The suspension of disconnects will remain in place until April 1. At that time, they will reevaluate restoration efforts and resources. At the direction of TVA, NES will resume disconnection upon completion of our recovery/restoration efforts. NES is committed to working with customers who have been impacted by the tornadoes. We encourage all customers who have concerns about payment to contact Customer Relations at 615-736-6900.

Piedmont Natural Gas has received approval from the Tennessee Public Utility Commission to significantly decrease natural gas rates for all customers in its Tennessee service territory. The decrease is effective immediately and will be reflected in customers’ March 2020 bills.

Piedmont Natural Gas is also contributing $200,000 in aid to organizations helping Nashville and Mount Juliet residents recover from the tornado that hit the area March 3.