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Posted on: November 16, 2020

Inslee Announces New Statewide Restrictions

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These new restrictions go into effect from midnight on Monday, November 16 and are effective at least through Monday, December 14. If the activity is not listed in the governor’s proclamation, it should follow its current guidance. All K12/higher education, health care, and childcare are exempt from the new restrictions and these restrictions do not apply to courts and judicial branch-related proceedings. 

Some of the guidance includes: 

  • No indoor social gatherings are allowed. Outdoor social gatherings can have five or fewer people from outside an immediate household.
  • Restaurants and bars are open for outdoor dining and takeout only- no indoor dining is allowed (these restrictions will go into effect on Wednesday, November 18).
  • Bowling alleys, movie theaters, museums, and zoos are closed.
  • Indoor service will be closed at fitness facilities and gyms, and youth and adult amateur sporting activities are limited to outdoors only with facial coverings.
  • Personal services such as hair dressers, nail salons, etc and retail occupancy, including grocery stores are limited to 25 percent of capacity and must close any congregate areas.
  • Long term care facilities can only allow outdoor visitation, except in the cases of end of life care and essential support personnel.
  • Religious services are limited to 25 percent indoor occupancy or 200 people, whichever is fewer. No choir, band or ensemble shall perform during these services. Facial coverings must be worn at all times by congregation members, and there cannot be any congregational singing.
  • Wedding receptions are prohibited. Wedding ceremonies will be allowed with no more than 30 people in attendance.
  • No real estate open houses.
  • These requirements also meant that those who are able to work from home must do so. If a business is not able to operate remotely, only 25 percent of the building’s capacity can work from there at one time. 

For a full list of all changes please visit the Governor’s website and review the full proclamation here and the full guidance page is available here.

MESSAGE FROM MAYOR GERE

Every resident of Anacortes plays a crucial role in this community. We have all taken extra steps to support our family, friends, and community during COVID-19. As we head into this holiday season, this time of giving, I want our residents to think about the role our local businesses play in making Anacortes the vibrant and unique town that we all cherish. Our small businesses are the backbone of this community. They are the backbone because they help us stand tall and be proud of our community, they represent our creative, entrepreneurial spirit. Our local businesses take care of our needs and connect us, they provide comfort and services that give our community a sense of pride. 

I want to call on each resident to consider shopping local. Our businesses are open for takeout, curbside services, and have gift cards that are perfect for this upcoming holiday season. Our local businesses give so much to our community, it is our time to step up and support them in whatever way we can.  I am asking that we all commit to purchasing once a week from a local restaurant for a takeout meal. If everyone did this, we can get our restaurants to December 14th with less harm and the ability to continue to feed us. I am asking for a commitment to shop local; this is the only way to support our local business. This Holiday season we can celebrate by supporting all those places we love and that provide for Anacortes year after year. These businesses donate hundreds of thousands of goods and service to causes and organizations every year in our town, this is our year to give back. We are Anacortes. We can do this. 

Don Measamer our Planning director and his team will be tracking every possible funding sources from the county, state and federal level of CARES Dollars to secure our share and to provide to our business with much needed financial assistance. Last week the City along with Skagit Foundation distributed $110,000 to 18 individual businesses. The City also has an additional $110,000 of Community Block Grant funds that Mr. Measamer needs to get approval to implement the program to get additional emergency funding into the community. We are also are looking to use some of our Lodging tax funds to help with marketing of our business.  It will take a village and we at the City are committed to this work. We are also working with Chamber of Commerce on Supporting the Local Business with a new online platform – Support Local. 

The Governor announced statewide restrictions for the next four-weeks to prevent the further spread of COVID-19 in our state. In light of the rising case numbers moving Skagit County into high risk, and Governor Inslee’s latest restrictions, the Anacortes Public Library has paused its reopening plans and will continue to focus on its highly successful Curbside services and virtual programming. Over 17,000 items have been checked out by over 5000 people since June via our curbside services, and the library continues to provide virtual programming for children nearly every day of the week, and consistent original adult programming. Additionally, the Anacortes Museum and our Maritime Heritage Center will be closed to visitors until further notice. Museum staff will continue to respond to phone calls and e-mails, and our website is a portal to a wealth of photographs, movies, yearbooks, newspapers, exhibits and other history.

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