Otter Tail County offering cabin checks so residents can stay home
FERGUS FALLS, Minn. — To reduce the risk of potential coronavirus spread that could overwhelm rural community hospitals and health care professionals, Otter Tail County is asking snowbirds and other seasonal residents to follow Gov. Tim Walz's emergency executive order 20-33 directing Minnesotans to stay at home.
The county's population nearly doubles during the summer months mainly due to seasonal property owners, according to a press release issued by the county. Health care facilities already ramp up during the summer to provide services to seasonal residents and visitors and those facilities have made it clear that they can't manage both situations.
“Seasonal property owners are an important part of our Otter Tail County communities. They are our friends and neighbors. They also make significant contributions to the local economy,” Lee Rogness, Otter Tail County Board Chair, said in the release. “While we miss them, we are listening to our local health care providers. Based on their guidance, we are encouraging everyone to adhere to the emergency order and avoid non-essential travel, including checking on cabins.”
To assist with people staying at home, the Otter Tail County Sheriff's Office has a property check request form available online. If seasonal property owners have properties they would like checked on, they're directed to complete the form online and a deputy will check on them and report back to the homeowner.
Jody Lien, Otter Tail County Public Director, advises snowbirds moving back to Minnesota lake homes to stay home for 14 days and follow the stay-at-home executive order.
For more information, visit ottertailcountymn.us/content-page/covid-19 .