Riverhead High School. File photo: Denise Civiletti

The Riverhead school board will meet in person and allow public attendance at its meeting for the first time since the coronavirus pandemic surged in New York and the governor implemented shutdown measures in March.

The school board will meet in the high school gymnasium at 7 p.m. tomorrow. On the board’s agenda tomorrow night is a public hearing on the district’s 2020-2021 emergency management plan.

Maximum capacity in the gymnasium is limited to 50 people, according to a notice issued by the district clerk. Members of the public will be admitted on a first-come, first-serve basis, the notice said.

“All attendees will be required to comply with applicable executive orders, CDC and department of health guidelines and local rules, including but not limited to social distancing, the wearing of masks, temperature checks and room capacity limitations,” the notice stated.

Anyone who has tested positive for COVID-19 within the past 14 days or who has symptoms of the disease, or has been in contact with any individual who has tested positive for COVID-19 within the past 14 days or has symptoms of the disease, or has traveled to any of the states on New York State’s travel advisory list within the past 14 days is asked not to enter the building, the district said.

The board meeting can be viewed online here: https://youtu.be/G6uxuVGPRgE. Anyone watching remotely who wants to comment for the record during the meeting should submit comments using this link: https://forms.gle/pgnndBtcD59o41UD6.

The last in-person public meeting of the Riverhead Board of Education took place on March 10. Two days later, on March 12, Gov. Andrew Cuomo signed Executive Order 202.1 which suspended portions of the New York State Public Officers Law to allow any public body to meet and take action remotely and without permitting in-person, public access to meetings — “provided that the public has the ability to view or listen to such proceeding and that such meetings are recorded and later transcribed.”

The executive order, which remains in effect, does not require the public body to prohibit in-person public access to meetings, but rather allows it. However, the state-mandated occupancy and public gathering limits affect the total number of people, including board members and staff, that can attend a meeting in-person.

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