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State to ‘open for business’ May 4, disaster declaration extended

Posted on Friday, April 24, 2020 at 4:01 pm

Stay at Home order not extended,

Boone County gives businesses options

“Missourians everywhere have stepped up and done their part,” “At the end of the day you still have to take care of the state of Missouri,” were two of the many statements Governor Mike Parson shared during his April 24 news conference, during which he declared Missouri would be open for business May 4 and the state’s emergency declaration would be extended through June 15.

He said he wanted to be clear his extension of the emergency declaration through June 15 did not include the Stay at Home order.

“We will be reopening Missouri on May the fourth,” he said. “Extending the emergency declaration simply allows us to continue using our resources and deploying them around the state. It also enables us to continue all the waivers or suspensions of state statutes and regulations in place while we adjust to the reopening.”

Next week, Parson said, he would introduce plans to show what the state’s reopening will look like.

That will include:

  • guidelines for small and large businesses and retail manufacturing
  • a plan for restaurants to reopen
  • guidelines for businesses such as salons, barbershops and gyms, where business requires people to be within six feet of each other
  • guidance for church services

His office, Parson said, is also working with the Missouri Department of Elementary and Secondary education on creating “a process to hold graduations… Youth and summer activities will also be addressed.”

He said personal care businesses such as barbers and hair stylists would be able to make their own decisions regarding safety protocols and would be able to open their business the morning of May 4. “I don’t think you’re going to need government to dictate everything about how you run your business,” Parson said when asked about social distancing and safety protocols for personal care businesses, adding he did not think people would go to businesses where they did not feel safe.

Earlier in the day, Stephanie Browning, director of the Columbia/Boone County Department of Health issued a news release relaxing guideline for many Boone County businesses. “Curbside pickup and delivery for all retail businesses. The order is effective at 8 a.m. on April 24 and expires at 11:59 p.m. on Sunday, May 3 or until it is extended, rescinded, superseded or amended in writing by further order.”

The release also said: “Restaurants and retail food establishments cannot conduct dine-in service, but can continue to do curbside pickup, drive-through or delivery. This order allows retail businesses, including those that have been deemed non-essential to take orders and fill those orders via shipping, delivery, or curbside pickup.   All businesses must adhere to social distancing requirements.”

For more, return later, or see next week’s edition of the Centralia Fireside Guard.