In a part-virtual, part in-person meeting late last month, Mars Borough Council briefly discussed having the borough office professionally cleaned.
The discussion came weeks after the borough building temporarily closed because of a positive COVID-19 case among borough staff.
Citing information from the floor and surface cleaning company Stanley Steemer, council vice president Robert Bost referenced early guidelines from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).
These guidelines seemed to indicate areas exposed to COVID-19 needed to follow a specific disinfectant procedure to remain COVID-free, according to Bost.
At the meeting, he said those procedures now seem to be relaxed, based on new virus data.
“I think the issue just died a month ago,” Bost said.
According to information published by the CDC this fall, coronaviruses die naturally on objects in a matter of hours or days. Warm temperatures and sunlight exposure cause the viruses to die faster.
CDC believes that a normal sanitizing routine of soap and water removes enough germs to lower the spread of COVID-19. EPA-approved disinfectants and certain homemade solutions are also reliable cleansers, according to CDC.
Julie Schultheis, councilwoman, said spending money on extra sanitizing didn't make sense when the borough has been cleaning the building itself. The Stanley Steemer quote for a one-time cleaning is about $500, according to council members.
Mike Fleming, council president, said he agreed with Schultheis.
Since the positive COVID-19 case, borough employees have returned to the office and continued operations. This includes building maintenance and upkeep.
“We handled it internally,” Fleming said.
Council unanimously voted against the measure for additional professional sanitizing.