A temporary restraining order is in place, preventing horses, owners, trainers and barn staff from New Orleans to be brought to Evangeline Downs in Opelousas.
New Orleans is the epicenter of COVID-19 cases in Louisiana and local officials says bringing New Orleans staff and horsed here puts the community at risk.
"Without having some definitve responses or evidence that says those individuals are clear of this virus
that is impacting all of us and worldwide, I'm going to say no." says Julius Alsandor
As of Wednesday, there are four cases in St. Landry Parish, and Mayor Alsandor says keeping additional people out of the parish is a way to help flatten the curve. He says it's a matter of public safety for Opelousas and St. Landry Parish.
Alsandor says, "When that is lifted..if that takes until Easter Sunday or the 13th of April then let it be."
Racing commission representative, Don Cravins, says the proposal was made to give the horses an opportunity to still be trained.
"Our issue was evicting the people and the horses from the premises and we're saying if you're already there
then you stay where you are..stay put. But allow them an opportunity to have continue to some limited training of
the horses because it has to do with their health and welfare and conditioning." says Cravins.
State representative, Dustin Miller, says having anyone transported into the area goes against Governor Edwards statewide stay-at-home order.
Miller says, "Everybody's been ordered to shut down. And I'm sure there's a skelton crew employees there. And horsemen have already moved from there, but we're asking is nobody move in nobody move out so can help do our part and containing this virus and social distancing.
The court will be Friday, March 27th.