CHEYENNE, Wyo. (KIFI/KIDK)-Over the past 14 days, Wyoming has averaged approximately 79 new cases of COVID-19 per day. The percent of COVID-19 tests with a positive result is 5.1%.
Now, Governor Mark Gordon has decided to ease restrictions on restaurants in the state. The new rules take effect October 1.
Changes in Health Order Number 1 will no longer require restaurants to space out seating in booths. It increases the permitted number of persons at a table from 6 to 8 persons. Even larger tables are permitted for members of the same household. The increase applies to both indoor and outdoor gatherings.
“Even in the face of a rising number of active cases, we recognize that the restaurant industry has faced challenges throughout this pandemic,” Governor Gordon said. “Nevertheless, they have really responded to ensure the safety of their customers. These are important steps that will help our restaurants recover and safely welcome more customers throughout the fall and winter.”
Gordon said updated health orders reflect Wyoming Department of Health data that shows that sit-down dining in restaurants has not significantly contributed to the spread of COVID-19 throughout the state. Gordon said he wanted to take an incremental approach to make sure restaurants can adjust to the coming cool weather months when outdoor dining might not be an option.
The Governor is also lifting requirements on school districts to quarantine close contacts if both the infected individual and those in contact with them were wearing face masks. That change is specific to schools at this time.
“These are the times when we need all Wyomingites to step up to help us resume the progress we made earlier this summer,” the Governor continued. “This current trend is concerning and I hope Wyoming will show her determination.”
The state is also in the process of updating guidance with federal regulations permitting indoor visitation at nursing homes and assisted living facilities. That rule will be published later this week.
As of September 29, Wyoming has recorded 4,948 lab-confirmed positive cases of COVID-19, 873 probable cases, and 50 deaths. You can view the updated health orders here.