For Immediate Release
We Have One Chance to Reopen Business Safely
Chaffee County prepares for a great recovery summer
We have one chance to reopen the County in a thoughtful, safe and coordinated way. We understand that local businesses are the backbone of the community and are an essential component of our economy.
Chaffee County’s efforts to “flatten the curve” – to keep the daily number of COVID-19 cases at a manageable level for medical providers – and keep the community safe, has been largely successful.
Chaffee County and the communities of Salida, Buena Vista and Poncha Springs are actively working on a slow and coordinated three-step reopening of the County during the month of May.
WHY THE TIMING IS RIGHT
• Chaffee County has seen a sustained decrease in positive COVID-19 cases over the last 14 days;
• Local hospitals are safely able to treat patients without resorting to crisis standards of care;
• Testing is available for all people with symptoms consistent with COVID-19 infection and that meet the testing criteria;
• Tracking for all COVID-19 cases can be accomplished;
• Clear protocol is in place that requires social distancing and assists with case investigation;
• The County’s plan is closely aligned with the phased reopening of the state presented recently by Governor Polis; although state wide epidemiology will differ with Chaffee’s unique demographic and geography.
WHAT THIS MEANS FOR LOCAL BUSINESSES
A phased approach to opening local businesses means that the community will still be able to effectively follow social-distancing practices while visiting some local businesses and completing essential tasks.
Prior to opening, all businesses in Chaffee County must complete a SAFE BUSINESS CHECKLIST and receive a SAFE BUSINESS CERTIFICATION to operate. Visit www.chaffeecounty.org and click the red COVID box to complete the form.
The following businesses may OPEN MAY 1:
• Personal services including salons, tattoo parlors, dog grooming, personal training
• Non-permitted construction
• Personal trainers (less than 4 people)
• Art galleries
• Real estate
• Offices – Up to 50% of staff can work in person with social distancing in place starting May 4. Offices are encouraged to continue telecommuting through Phase 2.
The following businesses may OPEN MAY 16:
• Second home owners
• Retail food establishments
• Spas and hot springs
• Gyms and fitness facilities
• Faith-based organizations can only operate with 10 or less people while practicing social distancing
All short-term lodging and tourism industry businesses may OPEN JUNE 1.
As Chaffee County continues to work with local, state and federal leaders, policies and procedures may change. We encourage local businesses to stay informed and visit http://chaffeecounty.org/public-health often to view the latest guidelines.
For more information, please contact City Hall at 719-539-4555.