Nevada governor Steve Sisolak has announced plans for a safe phased reopening of the state, including Las Vegas, with a timeline starting 15 February and running through to 1 May.
Governor Sisolak (pictured) said statewide coronavirus trends were moving in the right direction and that the relaxed restrictions would start with business operations and certain public gatherings, with local authorities assuming management from the state on 1 May 1 if current declining infection trends continued.
The governor said that the situation remained fraught, however, and would be driven by science.
“Some people want you to have no capacity limits, others want strict capacity limits,” Sisolak noted. “It is a difficult tightrope balancing act to attempt to keep our people as safe as we can by vaccinating them, protecting our health care workers, and our hospital capacity, and at the same time, get our economy moving.”
Daily Covid cases reported in Nevada topped 2,700 in mid-December and were averaging below 700 by 11 February and the governor noted that, from 15 February, capacity limits for public gatherings and events could increase to 100 individuals or 35% of fire code capacity, whichever is less, provided there was strict social distancing.
Organisations may begin submitting large gathering plans beginning 15 February, but no events can resume until 1 March, and then only if reviewed by local health authorities and approved by an appropriate state agency. This is the same process that was in place prior to the initiation of the pause. Gatherings of up to 250 people, or 50% of capacity, whichever is less, with strict social distancing requirements is expected from 15 March.
Nightclubs, day clubs and brothels will remain closed until at least 1 May, according to the timeline outlined by the governor.