HAMPTON, Va. — Hampton said Tuesday that city offices would require appointments for most people who have business with the city because of the increase in COVID-19 cases in Hampton and across Hampton Roads. The appointments will be required beginning on Jan. 13.
The city said the step should increase safety for everyone, including staff members, by making sure no one has to wait in offices. Hampton said it would conduct as many transactions as possible online, by phone, and with dropboxes for paperwork.
People don't need to schedule appointments to attend open meetings of Hampton City Council, boards, and commissions. Attendance isn't required to provide remarks to city council members. Anyone interested in speaking can submit comments at firstname.lastname@example.org, by phone [(757) 727-6315], by mail, or by dropping them off at city hall.
The treasurer's office and commissioner of the revenue's office will be open, but the city encouraged people to conduct business online or by phone when possible.
City Manager Mary Bunting said, "While our community did a great job for a long time, staying under state and regional caseload averages, we are now seeing case counts and positivity rates on the higher ends for the state."
Bunting pointed out that as of Jan. 11, the the positivity rate for PCR tests was 25.9% for the city which was one of the highest in Virginia.
Trash and recycling collection will continue as normal. Fire and EMS services, as well as police patrols, will be operational.
Other services still will be provided, but with some changes:
- The Community Development Department’s Permit Center will schedule appointments for those who want in-person services but will be able to conduct much of its business via internet or phone.
- The Hampton Public Library will offer curbside service by appointment, Monday-Friday 10 a.m.-4 p.m. and Saturday 1 p.m.-4:30 p.m.
All four library locations now offer wifi access in their parking lots.
- Outdoor parks will remain open. Appointments required for offices in any parks facility. Gosnold's Hope Park still reserving RV camp sites; call 850-5116. No new camping reservations or boat rentals at Sandy Bottom. Community centers remain closed, and pools are closed to the general public.
- Golf courses are open with tee-time reservation.
- The Hampton History Museum will be closed to regular traffic. For appointments to access museum galleries for self-guided tours or the visitors center, 727-1102. The gift shop will be closed until further notice
- The building at Air Power Park will be closed to regular traffic but outdoor visitors can access the the facilities; for self-guided tours, call 757-726-0650.
Anyone with questions can call Hampton's 311 Center from a landline; call or text (757) 727-8311 from a cell phone, email email@example.com, or chat online. Hours are 7 a.m. to 11 p.m. daily, including weekends.