Mayor John Cooper issued a press release Tuesday announcing the launch of a new “Hospitality Committee” to ensure business compliance with COVID-19 health orders.
Members of the committee cover major areas of Nashville’s tourism industry, including hotels, bars, restaurants, entertainment, and attractions.
“This group of industry professionals will also be positioned to work with their peers to ensure greater compliance with public health standards, including giving recommendations to the Metro Beer Board,” explained Cooper in the press release.
Cooper also implied that pandemic enforcements and regulations will last until a vaccination is available.
“As we look ahead at the next six months, the task for Nashville is to control the virus instead of letting it control us. That means safe public health protocols with a strict focus on masks and social distancing, so we can safely bring back more events and business capacity between now and the day we have a vaccine.”
Cooper’s Senior Advisor Benjamin Eagles told The Tennessee Star that the members won’t be deputized by the mayor.
“They are volunteering their time. This won’t be about the committee enforcing, but rather sharing industry expertise, planning for the rebound and helping with compliance of good public health practices.”
There are no further guidelines for how the committee will help businesses comply with the COVID-related orders.
One of the committee members, Nashville Zoo at Grassmere President and CEO Rick Schwartz, explained to The Star that the committee’s goal is to revive what was lost during this pandemic.
“The real gist of it is – Nashville is so deep on tourism. We’re looking at the best way to get tourists back. I’m representing the attractions, because we’re so dependent on them,” said Schwartz. “I’m excited about being involved. I think we all have concern with bringing tourism back – I mean, we’ll never be a vibrant city again until we bring back tourism.”
Schwartz shared that their committee is scheduled to meet for the first time on Thursday.
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