COVID-19 (Coronavirus) Information

CITY FACILITY CLOSURES AND REOPENINGS


The City of Johnston is working with local, state and federal partners to keep the community informed about COVID-19, a novel coronavirus. This page will be updated with news and resources as more information becomes available.
  
Parks and recreation facilities and amenities
• Public park playgrounds and restrooms – Open
• Ball fields (open to socially distanced practices) – Open
• Rental facilities (Crown Point Community Center and Simpson Barn) –Open

City facilities
Visitors are encouraged to use a face mask, sanitize hands when entering and exiting the buildings, or touching surfaces, avoid physical contact, including handshaking, practice social distancing and do not come in if you have a cough or fever.
City Hall – Open for public access. Nose and mouth covering is required; sanitize hands when entering or exiting the building, or touching surfaces; don't come in if you have a cough or fever; and avoid physical contact, including handshaking. 
Public Works – Open for public access
Library – Visit www.johnstonlibrary.com
 for more updates. 
Fire Stations remain closed to the public until further notice.
Public Safety Building - Lobby remains open for business
Public meetings – City Council, Board and Commission Meetings will continue to be held via electronically during the month of July. More information about the meetings can be found by visiting www.cityofjohnston.com.

Please consider calling 515-278-2344 or emailing City employees. Visit www.cityofjohnston.com/directory.aspx for contact information.  

UTILITY BILLING


Payments can be made by:
  • Dropping off payment in the drop box just inside the main doors of City Hall.
  • Online
  • Automatic Withdrawal
  • Phone by calling 833-259-4019
LIBRARY
Visit www.johnstonlibrary.com for library updates.

PERMITS AND INSPECTIONS


Electronic permits being accepted
  • Building permits
  • Trade permits
  • Rental housing registrations
Permit forms are available at www.cityofjohnston.com/105/Permits, and can be emailed to buildingdepartment@cityofjohnston.com. Building inspections are continuing as normal and can be scheduled by calling 515-727-7778.

Inspecting
Temporary suspension of rental housing inspections but will continue to register/renew rental housing registrations. Visit www.cityofjohnston.com/528/Rental-Inspections for more information.

PARKS & RECREATION


Questions, please call 515-727-8091
  • Parks and trails remain open for use, but residents and visitors are encouraged to practice social distancing. Social distancing is not gathering is groups of more than 10 people and staying six-feet apart. 
  • All Parks & Recreation facility rentals, including Crown Point Community Center, Simpson Barn and Park shelters are now open. 
  • The loading assistance of wood chips at Terra Park is available on Fridays appointment only.

POLICE


We remain open, but this is subject to change on short notice if circumstances dictate. Residents are encouraged to call 515-278-2345 or email police@cityofjohnston.com before visiting the station. 

Temporary suspension of programs until further notice.
  • Community educational programming

FIRE


Calls for service continue, including house calls; however, response modifications have changed to minimize exposure to personnel.

The engine and trucks will stage away from medical calls only where a person has COVID-19.

  • Personnel will wear a surgical masks on all calls.
  • Upon arrival at the scene, personnel will ask questions initially from a distance.
  • If patients exhibit symptoms or meet specific criteria, they will be asked to put on a surgical mask to prevent transmissions.
Temporary suspension of programs until further notice.
  • Station tours
  • Public speaking engagements
  • Ride-a longs
  • Educational programming events
  • Checking smoke and carbon monoxide alarms on medical runs until recommendations from the Iowa Public Health Department change. 
Should a resident have an alarm that doesn't turn off, we will attempt to troubleshoot the issue over the phone. If this cannot be done, we will send out a crew with protective equipment to address the situation. This will be dependent upon crew availability.

PUBLIC WORKS

Questions, please call 515-278-0822. During this time, Johnston Public Works will be deploying staff and resources to focus first on the continuation of the essential services we provide to our community and customers. Non-urgent response/services will follow as staffing and efforts to minimize exposure allow.

Permits
Encourage to be submitted electronically by emailing, Lori Mason
Should you need to drop of a permit, license or other information to the Public Works Department during regular business hours (7:30 a.m. - 4:00 p.m.), we encourage you to utilize the drop box, located just inside the facility at 6400 NW Beaver Drive, or the drop box located at City Hall.  

Water Division
Water meter and meter transmitting unit replacements have been temporarily suspended. Estimates will be provided until further notice. 

EMERGENCY PROCLAMATION


On Wednesday, March 18, 2020, Mayor Paula Dierenfeld declared a state of emergency proclamation. View the press release and proclamation here (PDF)

PUBLIC MEETINGS


The public meetings will take place online during the COVID-19 pandemic. Please visit agendas and minutes for more information.
SENIOR LUNCH SITE AND ACTIVITIES AT CROWN POINT COMMUNITY CENTER
The Polk County Senior lunch site and senior activities at the Crown Point Community Center in Johnston remain closed. Johnston Seniors are welcome to order a to-go lunch from the Grimes Community Center, located at 410 SE Main Street in Grimes. Lunch is available for PICK-UP ONLY at the Grimes Community Center from 11:00 a.m. to Noon. Reservations are required by 1:00 p.m. one-day in advance for the next day’s meal. Residents are urged to please call 515-986-5747 to reserve a lunch, which can be picked up at the North Entrance to the building.

JOHNSTON PARNTERSHIP


The Johnston Food Pantry will be distributing food from the parking lot. Admission to the stores will be restricted, but staff will take orders, prepare the food packages and bring them outside for customers. The hours of operation may vary. Customers may also call ahead at 515-868-1357 to place their orders.

As always, it is import to practice healthy habits

  • Wash your hands for at least 20 seconds, or as long as it takes you to sing Happy Birthday or the ABCs twice
  • When unable to wash your hands, use an alcohol-based sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose, or mouth
  • Avoid contact with people who are sick
  • Stay home while you are sick and avoid close contact with others

SOCIAL DISTANCING 101

  • Cover your mouth/nose with a tissue or sleeve when coughing or sneezing
  • Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces
  • Stay home and do not go out in public when you are sick
  • Avoid medical settings unless necessary
  • Give six-feet of space from others
  • Avoid shaking someone’s hand
  • Practice excellent personal hygiene habits
  • Work in ways that minimize close contact with people
  • Encourage telecommuting

The Iowa Department of Public Health is updating the number of Iowans being monitored and tested for COVID-19 each day, Monday through Friday. Visit their website for COVID-19 numbers: idph.iowa.gov/Emerging-Health-Issues/Novel-Coronavirus.