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Atlanta mayor forms advisory council to discuss city's response to pandemic

The council is set to meet on Friday.

ATLANTA — Atlanta's mayor is set to meet with the city's pandemic advisory council on Friday to discuss responsive actions the city can take in lieu of Gov. Brian Kemp reopening Georgia. 

The news came in a COVID-19 meeting with the Atlanta City Council on Thursday morning.

Georgia Gov. Brian Kemp made the announcement earlier this week that the state will begin gradually reopening as soon as the end of this week.

Businesses such as nail salons, hair salons, barbershops, tattoo parlors, and bowling alleys can all open their doors again on Friday if they choose. Restaurants and movie theaters are set to follow on Monday, April 27.

However, Atlanta Mayor Keisha Lance Bottoms said she is disagrees with Kemp's decision.

“I’ve said many times before that Gov. Kemp and I have enjoyed a very good working relationship," she said. " There will come times as has happened this week that we will not agree. But it is a respectful position on both of our parts to agree to disagree. The one thing we agree on has been the need to expand testing.”

Bottoms told 11Alive earlier in the week that she believes the reason the numbers in Atlanta haven't been much higher is greatly due to the aggressive steps taken early on. 

"They call it the novel coronavirus for a reason - because there's so many unknowns and while we have hospital capacity in the metro area, we have it because we've been aggressive. And when you have healthcare workers saying "please stay home to make our jobs easier," I think we have to heed those warnings," Bottoms mentioned.

Bottoms has asked the law department if the city is allowed to intervene with Gov. Kemp's decision. 

"There are so many unknowns - when I looked at the numbers last night, they showed that we have a nearly 14 percent spike in deaths and almost seven percent spike in those testing positive. And again, that’s without people with mild symptoms and people who are asymptomatic being tested," Bottoms said. 

11Alive is focusing our news coverage on the facts and not the fear around the virus. We want to keep you informed about the latest developments while ensuring that we deliver confirmed, factual information.

We will track the most important coronavirus elements relating to Georgia on this page. Refresh often for new information.

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