WOODBURN, Ore. (AP) — The City of Woodburn is suing Marion County over a COVID-19 isolation shelter at a Super 8 Hotel.
The lawsuit was filed Thursday following a directive by the Woodburn City Council, the Statesman Journal reported.
Attorneys for the city seek a court order against Marion County to cease shelter operations.
City officials maintain the shelter is operating in violation of the Woodburn’s Zoning & Development Ordinance and say the shelter poses a public safety risk to surrounding neighborhoods. The hotel is located across from a large facility with senior-restricted residences, a nursing home and a medical facility.
City officials learned of Marion County’s plans on June 16 and did not participate in the planning for the use of the site.
Marion County officials said they would operate the shelter starting July 1 for nine months.
As a condition of the county moving into phase 2 of reopening June 19, county health officials were required to find a facility for COVID-19 positive patients with mild symptoms who don’t have anywhere to isolate.
The county chose the hotel in Woodburn — one of the hotspots of coronavirus cases in the state.
On June 24, Marion County Commissioners held a public meeting and unanimously approved a $2.1 million agreement to use the hotel.
Marion County spokeswoman Jolene Kelley said as of Friday, no COVID-19 guests had used the hotel as a shelter and declined to comment on the city’s claims, citing the pending litigation.