Gov. Ricketts announces Phase 3 of Directed Health Measures
Monday Afternoon, Gov. Ricketts announced several changes to local Directed Health Measures which will take place on June 22. All counties that are in Phase 2, 89 counties total, will move to Phase 3. Four counties that are in Phase 1 (Hall, Hamilton, Merrick and Dakota) will move to Phase 2.
Bars, restaurants and gentleman's clubs will be able to open at 100 percent capacity. Games will be allowed but individuals will have to be seated unless playing games or ordering. Eight people can sit at a table. Salad bars and buffets are still prohibited
Childcare facilities will have their limits changed. Infants to 3-year-olds will be limited to 15 children per space. Three-year-olds will be limited to 20 children per space. Four to 5-year-olds will be limited to 24 children per space. Finally, school-aged children will be limited to 30 children per space. All other state provisions, statues, and regulations still apply.
Indoor gatherings will be limited to 50 percent rated capacity, while outdoor gatherings will be limited to 75 percent capacity. Neither gatherings are to exceed 10,000 individuals. Groups should be limited to eight people and those groups should be six feet apart.
Fan attendance for youth and school games will change to the same limits as gatherings. Individuals are no longer limited to household members only. Contact team sports may begin practices and games on July 1.
Parades, carnivals, midways, dances and beer gardens will remain prohibited. Dancing at these events will not be allowed, unless they dance at their tables. Dance recitals will be allowed, though must follow protocols for gatherings.
Plans for reopening to new capacity limits must be submitted to local health departments and approved for all indoor and outdoor venues which hold 500 or more individuals. This is expanded to 1,000 or more individuals in counties with populations over 500,000.
Weddings and funerals must keep guests to tables of eight. Buffets or salad bars are still prohibited. Dancing is allowed at weddings. The Governor said it's easier to contract trace at weddings because there is usually a guest list.
Gyms, fitness centers, health clubs and spas will be limited to 75 percent occupancy.
Elective surgeries will have all restrictions removed from the DHM.
Gov. Ricketts expects schools to have students back in class this fall. The Nebraska Department of Education is still deciding how it’ll do so safely to protect students and staff.
"Our expectation is that there will be in-person learning this fall..." said Matthew L. Blomstedt, Commissioner of Education. "The Department of Education will continue to provide guidance... it will help find the best practices taking place."
Phase 4 was also announced at the press conference, however a date has yet to be decided. During Phase 4, most DHMs will be removed and replaced with guidance. The exception to this will be for gatherings, in which indoor gatherings will be limited to 75 percent rated occupancy while outdoor gatherings will be allowed to have 100 percent occupancy. Six-feet separation between groups will remain in guidance.