Gov. Tate Reeves has said that while his office has looked into the closing of bars and restaurants, he is hesitant to issue mandatory closings to private businesses. The city of Oxford had less restraint last night.

As the COVID-19 virus pandemic spreads, the Oxford Board of Aldermen unanimously passed a resolution Tuesday night that requires restaurants and bars to shut down common dining facilities. Restaurants will only be allowed to use drive-through, curbside pick-up, or delivery methods. 

The resolution also gave the mayor the power to close all liquor stores and to order a general curfew as deemed necessary. The curfew could only last up to five days. 

The mayor also was given the power to issue additional orders that “are necessary for the protection of life and liberty.”

According to the Daily Journal, several Oxford restaurants had voluntarily closed, including Ajax Diner, Proud Larry’s, The Sipp, McEwen’s, Volta Taverna, Oxford Canteen, and Track 61.

As of yesterday’s count, there were 21 positive cases in Mississippi from the following counties: Copiah, Forrest, Hancock, Harrison, Hinds, Jackson, Leflore, Monroe, and Pearl River. There have been 389 individuals tested by the state’s public health laboratory.