Hawaii is lifting restrictions on COVID-19, allowing restaurants and bars in some regions to resume operations at full capacity, Gov. David Ayge said on Tuesday.
The Governor explained to the media at a press conference the next phase of COVID-19 measures for states and counties ahead of the November 30 expiration of the current state of emergency declaration.
Effective December 1, state restrictions on public gatherings in bars, restaurants, gyms and other venues will be lifted. However, individual counties will be free to impose restrictions depending on their situation without the need to obtain the governor’s approval, Ige said.
“Counties will continue to have direct responsibility for emergency management in their counties, and they will carry out emergency management functions that will likely continue to include rules, orders and proclamations or directives in emergencies,” he said. …
“It’s really just a return to normal emergencies that constituencies are in and the state provides leadership and support.”
Most counties in Hawaii will allow the hospitality sector to return to business 100% based on new orders. These counties will also waive the requirement for regular visitors to observe six-foot social distancing measures, according to the Associated Press.
He added that “improving and stabilizing viral activity in our community” makes this “an opportune moment to bring government coordination back to the county.”
Ige noted that some basic COVID-19 rules will remain in place, including indoor camouflage requirements and vaccination or testing requirements for government or county employees.
Hawaii will lift quarantine exemptions for Critical Infrastructure Workers (CISA) from November 29, Ige said.
Exceptions for those who have previously tested positive for COVID-19 and other exemptions will continue to be addressed on a case-by-case basis as it encouraged travelers to return to the state.
“Hawaii is open to business,” Ige said, adding that with domestic travel returning to pre-pandemic levels, the tourism industry is expected to return to normal soon.