ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (KRQE) – Mayor Tim Keller and other city officials held a daily coronavirus press conference on Tuesday, March 24 to discuss several changes to city services.
Following the governor’s recent stay-at-home instructions, Mayor Keller announced several changes that will take place in the city of Albuquerque. The mayor emphasized the importance of social distancing and explained that due to the city’s location as the urban center of the state, Albuquerque faces a higher risk of spreading coronavirus and may in the future take more precautions to decrease these risks.
At this time all hospitals will no longer be allowing visitors.
The city is now closing many services in an effort to protect public health. All city buildings are now closed to the public including City Hall.
The City Clerk Office is closed but will be holding remote hearings. The City of Albuquerque Water Authority is temporarily closing all of its walk-in payment locations but will be accepting payments online and by mail.
Headstart pre-K programs and city golf courses are now closed. The Planning Department is also closed except for the business community. Permitting and inspections are being scheduled and arranged by phone and digitally.
Spring break programming is now officially canceled. This includes all city programs including Explora.
The transit department will be switching to a reduced schedule over the next several days. Starting this weekend, the buses will run on a Saturday schedule every day. Albuquerque Rapid Transit routes will also stop this weekend.
The BioPark, museums, theatres, swimming pools, and playgrounds will also be closed at this time. Parks will be open for exercise however, the playgrounds will be unavailable.
Community centers are closed with the exception of emergency childcare. Those interested in this service are asked to call the center ahead of time.
All homeless centers are open and programs are up and running. Deputy Director of the Department of Family and Community Services Lisa Huval states that they are working to identify those with COVID-19 symptoms and will provide space for them to recover safely in isolation.
The city currently has limited funding for motel vouchers in order to assist those experiencing homelessness. These limited resources are available for those in dire need. You can make a donation to the One Albuquerque Housing Fund for housing vouchers that will help to get those experiencing homeless off the street.
Albuquerque’s Health and Social Service Centers are open and are providing crucial services to those in need. There are four locations, one in each quadrant of the city that offers various things such as monthly food boxes for families as well as limited supplies of clothing and diapers.
If you are in need of help visit your closest Health and Social Service Center or call 311 to be directed to the nearest location and guidance to assist in your needs.
Mayor Keller also urged the public not to engage in parties or public gatherings as they violate the state’s current guidelines in the fight against COVID-19. The Albuquerque Police Department is working on ways to help enforce the governor’s order on this.