COVID-19 outbreak closes office of Hardin County Clerk


UPDATE, SEPT 3 -- The office has reopened.

INITIAL STORY --The Hardin County Clerk’s office is closed today because of an outbreak of COVID-19.

A sign on the door says the office, which is where local residents go to renew vehicle registration tags, may be open Friday.

“We’ll have to play it by ear,” County Clerk Paula Wilhite said by phone. “I hope everybody didn’t wait until the last day” to try to renew tags.

Hardin County residents can renew vehicle registrations online and then receive the sticker in the mail. However, renewals won’t be processed until the office is staffed.

Five employees in the small office are out sick with COVID-19, including herself, Wilhite said, but a couple may be cleared soon to return to work.

“I’ve never been so surprised in my life,” she said. “I don’t get close to anyone without a mask.”

She said some of the infected staff members have been vaccinated and some have not. Wilhite said she has not gotten a shot due to a medical condition.

One unvaccinated employee is currently on a ventilator, she noted.

Wilhite said she went to Hardin Medical Center on Thursday morning to receive an infusion of monoclonal antibodies which she hopes will speed her recovery.

Hardin County Mayor Kevin Davis said a high pressure sprayer is regularly used to spray Clorox-based sanitizer in courthouse hallways and offices.

The mayor said he is vaccinated and urges that anyone who is eligible to be vaccinated do so.