Portland restaurants and bars will close indoor dining again starting April 30

Portland bars and restaurants will, once again, have to close their indoor dining rooms to customers starting April 30. Multnomah and Clackamas counties, along with 13 others, will fall into the “extreme risk” category, which limits food companies to foreign service only. . The move comes as COVID-19 cases and COVID-19-related hospitalizations increase statewide.

The full list of counties that fall under the extreme risk category includes Baker, Clackamas, Columbia, Crook, Deschutes, Grant, Jackson, Josephine, Klamath, Lane, Linn, Marion, Multnomah, Polk and Wasco. Under the extreme risk guidelines, restaurants and bars can serve customers outdoors, with a capacity limit of 100 people (newly increased by 50 people); no more than six people per group can sit together, no more than two households. Restaurants and bars must close before 11 p.m., as before. The level of risk also places limits on places like churches and gymnasiums: churches cannot accommodate more than 25% of their capacity or 100 people, whichever is smaller, and fitness centers over 500 feet. squares cannot accommodate more than six people inside. time, not to mention the staff.

This will be the third restaurant closure inside Multnomah County since the state announced the first suspected case of COVID-19 in Oregon in March 2020. The state reopened for the first time. Portland restaurants for indoor dining in June, followed by the second shutdown of indoor services in November. Restaurants reopened for indoor service in February, and even though the state allowed some Oregonians to receive their first doses of the COVID-19 vaccine, cases have increased.

On April 23, Governor Kate Brown announced that unless things slowed down, the growing number of cases would force her to put more than a dozen counties back into the extreme risk category as of April 30. now ranking second in the country for having the fastest growing spread of infection, ”she said. “Right now we are going backwards. Oregon must move forward. My goal is to get the state back on track to lift the restrictions this pandemic has placed on us – I think we can get there by early summer, but we’ll all have to work together. ”

On April 19, Oregon opened vaccine slots for all Oregonians over 16, two weeks after restaurant and grocery store workers became eligible. The state has been criticized by food worker unions and advocacy groups for waiting to open up vaccine eligibility to frontline workers weeks after other states, such as New York and the California, have opened up access to vaccination to these populations.

Governor Brown’s office today released new county risk levels, confirming the state will increase restrictions in 15 counties; restaurants and bars have until Friday to prepare for this closure, which will last at least a week. The state will assess the number of hospitalizations and COVID-19 cases and adjust the levels accordingly each week for at least the next three weeks. The governor also said she was working to approve a new $ 20 million relief program for business owners in extreme risk counties.

“The fastest way to lift health and safety restrictions is for Oregonians to get vaccinated as quickly as possible and follow the safety measures we know of to prevent this virus from spreading,” said Brown in a press release. “I recognize the burden these restrictions place on businesses and working families in Oregon. My goal is to lift these restrictions as soon as it is safe to do so and keep Oregon on track to lifting most health and safety requirements by the end of June so we can reopen. completely our economy. “

• Governor Kate Brown urges Oregon residents to get vaccinated, 15 counties qualify for extreme risk amid rapid increase in COVID-19 cases and hospitalizations [Official]
• Oregon governor to close indoor dining next Friday in some counties if COVID hospitalizations increase [O]
• Oregon suspends indoor and outdoor dining in restaurants and bars for at least two weeks [EPDX]

Correction: A previous version of this story misidentified the restaurant in the story photo caption. It’s a photo of Andina, not Ataula.


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Sandy A. Greer

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