Rapid City Council votes to reopen businesses with stipulations
RAPID CITY, S.D. – Rapid City Common Council votes in favor of beginning to reopen business but with several stipulations. The deciding vote was 7-2 with Laura Armstrong and Ritchie Nordstrom voting against the resolution.
Businesses identified in an emergency ordinance passed in late March like bars, restaurants, and other public gathering locations will now be allowed to reopen and serve patrons on-site beginning Tuesday morning. The resolution lays out over a dozen guidelines that echo the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommendations.
Businesses must maintain a six-foot distance between tables, chairs, and bar stools however this distance does not need to be enforced between people who share a household. Instead of limiting businesses to ten people or less, the council approved the resolution provided businesses do not exceed 50 percent occupancy and they maintain the six-foot distance.
Grocery stores and retail venues must also maintain a social distance in addition to marking shopping aisles as one way.
In restaurants, hair salons, nail salons, and barber shops, employees will be required to wear a mask that covers both the person’s nose and mouth.
The resolution also emphasizes sanitation by requiring retail businesses to broadcast over a PA system public health announcements, requiring they offer hand sanitizer in readily available locations, and enhancing cleaning requirements for hotel/motel rooms.
Any exceptions to the guidelines must be submitted in writing to the city but exemptions for implementing social distancing or other CDC guidelines will not be granted.
The resolution is in effect until May 31 unless repealed, modified, or extended. The topic can also be brought up again at the regular council meeting scheduled May 4.