Gov. Polis is ‘optimistic’ bars, restaurants can reopen by Memorial Day weekend

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DENVER (KDVR) — In a news conference on Friday, Gov. Jared Polis provided an update on COVID-19 in Colorado. Polis says there have been 18,801 positive COVID-19 cases in the state and 961 deaths due to the virus.

Additionally, Polis provided updates on his plan for reopening the state.

Restaurants, bars

Polis says there is a possibility that restaurants and bars could open before Memorial Day weekend.

He will have a better idea of the timeline for reopening around May 22. He plans to review data at that time and determine whether the “Safer at Home” guidelines that were put in place at the end of April have been working.

Polis says that if the data supports reopening restaurants and bars, they will be able to do so by Memorial Day weekend.

Campsites reopening

Additionally, Polis says that he is “optimistic” that campsites will be able to open by Memorial Day weekend. He mentioned that some counties with higher cases may not be ready to open campsites by then, but is hoping those who can open safely will do so by the end of May.

Masks

Polis also said it is important to continue to wear masks when leaving your house. By doing so, he says, the state will be able to open up sooner.

“Not only are masks critical for protecting ourselves and those around us, they are a key to safely opening up more and more of our economy and society. We are going to be in this for the long haul, and wearing masks is an easy step for all of us to take,” Polis said.

Schools reopening

Polis says he believes in-person classes will reopen in the fall. He also says that the Colorado Department of Education will provide guidelines for school districts to ensure safety for students, faculty and staff.

Additional resources for Coloradans

The governor announced an initiative called Can Do Colorado, which provides businesses tips on increasing teleworking capabilities. It also highlights companies that “are being creative and going above and beyond to run their businesses safely and remotely.”

Polis also announced the launch of a program called “Connect to Care Jobs.” It aims to connect people searching for health care jobs with immediate openings in residential care settings.

Finally, Polis said several resources exist for Coloradans who have lost health care due to being laid off, including PEAK and the state’s health care exchange.

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