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Father Tolton officials respond after being accused of violating COVID-19 health order

Father Tolton officials respond after being accused of violating COVID-19 health order


The Columbia/Boone County Department of Public Health and Human Services has filed a notice of a COVID-19 health order violation against the athletic director at Father Tolton Catholic High School.

School officials said in a release Monday afternoon the safety plan for a recent cross country tournament was not submitted to the health department because of an oversight.

According to the notice, the team in charge of business guidance at PHHS advised Tolton Athletic Director Gary Link to cancel or postpone a cross country meet on Sept. 12 because there was not an approved operational plan on file.

Tolton officials said the notice to cancel the event came less than 12 hours before the tournament was to be held. According to the school's release, the health department's message was sent after school let out and was not seen until the next morning just before the event.

"Due to receiving the email after business hours, by the time the email was read and the mistake was realized, it was too late to reasonably notify all of the participating schools, teams, and families involved," the release said.

The school said organizers immediately sent the safety plan to the health department Saturday morning.

Scott Clardy, the Columbia/Boone County Health and Human Services assistant director said the department followed the health order.

"The public health order lays out the situations under which a facility or an event would need to submit an operation appointment and in the case of what happened with Father tolton, they just simply did not submit an a plan," Clardy said. "They held the event, without a plan being submitted and so they received a notice of violation because of that."

The notice of violation states that Link violated Section 1.18 of health order No. 2020-10 by still holding the meet without an operational plan. The section required businesses, entities, large venues or public gatherings to submit an operational plan 30 days in advance of an event.

Dr. Daniel Everett, the Father Tolton Catholic High School president says the school did have a safety plan in place.

"It was an oversight on our part," Everett said. "We did have the plans created, prepared, it was even distributed to all of the high schools and all the schools involved but unfortunately there was an oversight that we did not submit it to the health department."

Everett says the violation won't be repeated.

"We're putting procedures in place to make sure that doesn't happen again," Everett said. "I fully support the health department all they're doing to keep us safe."

PHHS also cited the meet's results as evidence the school held the event.

Over the weekend the department also suspended the operating permit of a bar that inspectors said was in violation of the health order.

Boone / Columbia / Education / K-12 education / News / Top Stories
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Molly Stawinoga

Molly Stawinoga is ABC 17’s weekday morning anchor and a reporter at ABC 17 News. Molly joined the news team in 2017 while studying political science, journalism and Spanish at the University of Missouri. She is originally from DeKalb, Illinois.

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Zach Boetto

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1 Comment

  1. Seriously, you have to ask permission from the medical tyrants before you can do anything. As if the Medical Industrial Complex has gotten a single thing right since the entire corona flu psyop began. In any other field, such ineptitude would rightly be grounds for immediate dismissal.

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