A judicial order closing Lancaster County courts to the public was extended to June 30 this morning by President Judge David Ashworth, but the order provides flexibility for a gradual reopening.
The new order provides common Pleas and magisterial district judges the ability to conduct an in-person hearing if the judge deems it necessary.
If personal appearances are deemed appropriate and necessary, social distancing shall be observed," Ashworth said in an email. "Individuals entering any court facility shall be required to follow Department of Health guidelines for access to public buildings, including appropriate social distancing, wearing protective face masks in common areas and complying with all safety directives provided by the Court or County staff."
In a related action, the board of commissioner approved a $200,000 contract with an association of constables to provide security at district courts and enforce CDC guidelines as they begin to reopen and deal with a backlog of cases.