In a move that reflects improving COVID-19 numbers, Gov. John Carney on Friday modified his emergency order to allow businesses to raise the number of people inside to 25, or 50 percent of the fire occupancy limits, and to allow exercise classes to rise to 15.
Previously, the limited on gatherings at business and other indoor spaces was 10.
The new rule applies to business or indoor space open to the public, which the order said includes but is not limited to: food and drink establishments; commercial lodging; convention centers; houses of worship; pools; senior centers; and parks and recreation facilities or at facilities without a stated fire code occupancy.
To host groups larger than that, up to 150, organizers must submit a plan to the Division of Public Health.
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The limit for private indoor gatherings or events, such as dinner parties, house parties and birthday parties, remains at 10 people.
Businesses and hosts must continue to follow state and local COVID-19 restrictions, including masking and social distancing requirements.
Indoor gatherings with fewer than 25 people and outdoor gatherings with fewer than 50 people do not require a plan, but must follow all other applicable requirements.
The order also raises the group exercise class capacity to 15 people, excluding staff, but COVID restrictions must be followed.
Read the modification here.
“We are making progress in our fight against COVID-19. Hospitalizations are down more than 50 percent from our winter peak, and Delaware providers have administered more than 164,000 doses of the COVID-19 vaccine,” Carney said in a press release. He also urged to continue to wear masks, social distance and avoid large groups.
Carney also extended the the COVID-19 emergency order another 30 days.
Betsy Price is a Wilmington freelance writer who has 40 years of experience, including 15 at The News Journal in Delaware.
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