Gov. Steve Sisolak extended his state’s stay-at-home order through May 15, but offered relaxed guidelines for the types of businesses that can offer curbside service and revealed a look at what phase one of reopening business could look like if Nevada sees fewer reported cases of COVID-19 in the next two to three weeks.
“I’m moving into phase one on or before May 15,” he said during a press conference on Thursday evening.
For now, he’s allowing retail stores including cannabis outlets to offer curbside service. Places of worship can offer drive-thru service as long as households maintain six feet of social distancing. And Nevadans can now participate in outdoor activities such as tennis, golf, and pickle ball.
Sisolak says that everyone should continue to maintain social distancing practices. “The virus remains among us, and people infected with the virus will spread it to others where strong social distancing measures are not in use.”
While not mandatory, he says Nevadans should wear facial coverings whenever they leave their homes, but people should “continue to stay home as much as possible, and avoid all nonessential travel.”
If the numbers of COVID-19 cases, hospitalizations, and deaths continue to decline, he says Nevada can move into phase one of reopening businesses across the state. That includes opening some nonessential businesses, but Sisolak emphasizes that openings are voluntary and stores can continue to offer curbside service. Customers should wear face coverings.
Dine-in restaurants and personal care services may be able to open as well, but with strict guidelines to protect the health and safety of the workers and the customers. Sisolak says he’s working with the Nevada Restaurant Association on appropriate distancing guidance.
Bars and nightclubs will remain closed, as will sporting events, large in-person places of worship, and concerts because of the compact nature of seating at these venues.
Gaming companies and resorts also will not open in phase one. All final decisions on how gaming establishments are reopened in the state of Nevada will be determined by the Nevada Gaming Control Board, he says.
Sisolak says the state will stay in phase one for a minimum of two to three weeks, “the recommended time frame necessary to evaluate trends in cases and hospitalizations as we relax restrictions.”
He also notes that county commissions will determine when many businesses within their jurisdictions can open and operate, since the situation in each of the state’s 17 counties is different. Counties will submit criteria reports and data tracking so that the state can monitor the progress through all phases of reopening for business.
Marilyn Kirkpatrick heads up the Clark County Commission with oversight of unincorporated parts of the county.
He also notes that if COVID-19 case counts, hospitalizations, and deaths go up during a phase of reopening, he will pause reopening and steps should be taken to get control of the rising numbers.