Private gatherings in Bloomington will now be limited to just 15 people, following a week of crackdowns by Indiana University on student parties.
"This is an attempt to make clear those should not happen," Mayor John Hamilton said. "We will have IU Police and Bloomington Police ready to remind everybody if there is a gathering too big, that it needs to be broken up."
A joint news release from the city and IU Vice Provost Lauren Robel directly linked Mayor Hamilton's new executive order to recent reports of large student gatherings and off-campus parties.
"Another semester is about to begin in beautiful Bloomington, but this semester is unlike any other," the news release said. "Bloomington as we know and cherish it depends on compliance with this new order, with county and state regulations for gatherings and physical distancing, and with IU’s own guidelines. Sanctions for students who do not adhere to IU's COVID-19 health and safety precautions will be swift."
Just yesterday, IU officials said they were investigating reports of a large off-campus party on Washington Street and planned to hand out suspensions connected to the event.
The new gathering size restrictions follow several official university reprimands, including a Thursday email from IU President Michael McRobbie stating that if too many students failed to comply with the Student Commitment Form they all signed before returning to campus, the university would move to all-virtual instruction, following schools like Notre Dame and Michigan State.
Purdue University suspended 36 students Wednesday for violating mask and social distancing guidelines.
Hamilton said the city doesn't have an end date in mind for the order, but it will be monitoring the situation on a weekly basis.
Bente Bouthier and Ethan Burks contributed to this story.
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