Central District to enter Phase I starting June 1

Published: May. 21, 2020 at 6:54 PM CDT
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Governor Pete Ricketts is allowing the Central District (Hall, Hamilton, and Merrick) to move into Phase I starting June 1. The move comes after Grand Island Mayor Roger Steele asked Governor Ricketts to allow businesses to reopen.

The guidelines businesses must follow in Phase I include:

-Gatherings - including gyms and event venues - remain subject to 10-person limit

- Salons, barber shops, massage therapy services, and tattoo parlors can reopen. They are limited to 10 patrons. Both workers and patrons must wear masks.

-Restaurants can reopen for dine-in, up to 50% capacity, with a maximum of six persons per table. Bars remain closed

-Childcare facilities can have up to 15 kids per room/space, subject to the usual staff-to-child ratios.

Even with businesses in Grand Island allowed to open, Mayor Steele still has his concerns.

"The one thing I am concerned about is crowds. I want to avoid large gatherings because that is really how the virus spreads," Steele said.

He said he has confidence in businesses and the health department to reopen safely but citizens still have to do their part.

"I'm counting on the people of Grand Island to play it smart. We can do this. This is not impossible," Steele said. "We can have more access to businesses and still practice things like social distancing."

Steele said he hopes for a safe summer for two reasons; so, schools can open in August and so Grand Island can host a successful Nebraska State Fair.