On June 19, 2020

Governor Phil Scott announces capacity increases

Starting June 26, venues can fill to 50% capacity or 75 indoor, 150 outdoor

As state data and expanded testing and tracing capacity continue to support reopening, Governor Phil Scott on Friday, June 19, announced the state will raise occupancy limits for event venues, arts, culture and entertainment venues, as well as restaurants.

Beginning June 26, these venues can expand capacity for events and dining to 50% of approved occupancy size or one person per 100 square feet of customer facing space.

This change will allow for indoor events of up to 75 people and outdoor organized events of up to 150.

“We know the virus is still among us, which is why we must keep some restrictions in place to avoid significant spread of Covid-19, but I also know how devastating these restrictions have been on all businesses and especially for the hospitality sector,” said Governor Scott. “We continue to work with our public health experts as well as representatives of the hospitality sector to find ways to further open dining, events and travel without reversing the positive gains we’ve made to slow spread of this virus.”

This next step follows recent steps to ease quarantine restrictions for travelers and for Vermonters who may be returning from another state.

“We are committed to working collaboratively with these critical sectors and will continue to provide support to Vermont’s tourism and hospitality economy in its recovery,” said Agency of Commerce and Community Development Secretary Lindsay Kurrle. “The summer season is essential to their viability long term. We are encouraged by these reopening steps and hope to continue to find creative solutions that can increase capacity limits while keeping public health at the forefront of Vermont’s reopening.”

As with every reopen step, this move includes health and safety precautions, developed by the Agency of Commerce and Community Development (ACCD), Department of Health and Department of Public Safety. These precautions include, but are not limited to, distance requirements between tables (“to put it in Vermont perspective, that’s approximately one cow,” Kurrle noted), cleaning and hygiene procedures, and training and education to limit spread of Covid-19.

Health and safety procedures for all sectors can be found at accd.vermont.gov.

ACCD has also updated its Drive-in Operation guidance (Section 5.2) to make clear firework displays can move forward with drive-in viewing options. The Administration has credited Killington and Fairfax for their creativity in adapting some Fourth of July festivities, and said other towns could follow suit in modified ways that follow guidance for gatherings and dining.

Charts courtesy of the state of Vermont, full report available here.

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