(BIVN) – With a high number of new COVID-19 cases reported in recent weeks, Hawaiʻi Governor David Ige today signed Executive Order 21-05 setting statewide limits for social gatherings, restaurants, bars, and social establishments.
“The Delta variant of the SARS-CoV-2 virus has changed the course of the pandemic in Hawaiʻi. We are seeing case numbers in the 600s – the highest numbers we’ve seen since this pandemic began,” said Gov. Ige. A news conference was livestreamed Tuesday afternoon on Facebook. “This requires immediate and serious attention to avert unmanageable strains on our healthcare system and other catastrophic impacts to the state,” he said.
According to the State, the following measures will take effect immediately:
- Social gatherings will be limited to no more than 10 people indoors and no more than 25 outdoors.
- Patrons in restaurants bars and social establishments must remain seated with parties maintaining at least 6 ft distancing between groups (with maximum groups size of 10 indoors and 25 outdoors); there will be no mingling, and masks must be worn at all times except when actively eating or drinking.
- The counties will review proposals for all professionally sponsored events for more than 50 people, to ensure that appropriate safe practices will be implemented. Organizers of these professional events must notify and consult with the following county agencies prior to the event. County approval is required for professional events for more than 50 people. For “Professional Events Contacts” for the County of Hawaiʻi, the State news release listed this web address.
- For all high-risk activities, indoor capacity is set at 50%. This includes bars, restaurants, gyms, and social establishments.
“These limitations apply statewide and will be implemented as defined by each county and in accordance with definitions specified by each county,” the State news release said. “Additionally, the counties will enforce these measures pursuant to county orders, rules, and directives that identify penalties for each county. Statewide limitations will not affect the counties’ COVID-19 policies regarding weddings, churches or other structured events.”
The Executive Order will remain in place until Oct. 18, unless superseded by a subsequent order.