Last week, Gov. Steve Sisolak urged Nevadans to stay home, wear a mask, and continue to socially distance so he wouldn’t have to impose stricter COVID-19 restrictions. On Wednesday, he says he continues to look at mitigation options that will help COVID-19 number go down.
“I am incredibly concerned about the severity of COVID-19 in our state, as demonstrated in the increase in numbers,” he says. “My administration is exploring all mitigation options available to get this under control, while walking a tightrope to balance public health and economic impacts. The goal is to have the most impact on mitigating the spread and the least impact on our fragile economy.”
Sisolak says he plans offer his next steps “in the near future.”
“I am aware of how consequential these decisions are,” he says.
In March, the state shut down nonessential businesses such as casinos, restaurants, and bar to prevent the spread of COVID-19. Restaurants could continue offering takeout and delivery options, and reopened in early May for dine-in service. Bars reopened in late May, only to see those that did not serve food forced to close again in July. In late September, bars reopened. Casinos reopened in June, with the last on the Strip, The Cromwell, returning in late October.
Nevada still has a mandatory mask order that requires face coverings in public spaces, including outdoors when social distancing is not possible. Businesses that reopened must maintain 50 percent capacity and social distancing.
Over the past 14 days, Nevada averaged 1,288 new COVID-19 positive cases daily, with 15.6 percent testing positive. Since the pandemic started in February, the state recorded more than 125,000 cases and 1,947 deaths.
In the meantime, Sisolak tested positive for COVID-19 on November 13 and continues to isolate at the governor’s mansion in Carson City. He reports only mild head congestion and completes his home isolation period early next week, “assuming all the criteria is met, including being asymptomatic for 24 hours following my 10 day isolation, per CDC guidelines.”