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These states are rolling back restrictions to reopen

American Wire
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Ron Harris/AP

President Trump voiced his support on Wednesday as governors in many states have given the green light to begin reopening. Many are following a phased approach to gradually lift restrictions as advised by the administration.

On Monday, Gov. Brian Kemp of Georgia announced he would allow some businesses, including gyms and hair salons, to reopen prior to the state’s stay-at-home order in effect until April 30. Elective surgeries can resume on April 24. Restaurants and movie theaters will reopen with limited capacity on April 27.

“I think this is the right approach at the right time,” Kemp said. “We’re not just throwing the keys back to these business owners. We’re talking about people the government shut down their business.”

Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis issued a stay-at-home order for the state on April 1. Last Friday, he gave the go-ahead for some counties to reopen their beaches, though gatherings of more than 50 people are still prohibited.

On Friday, Texas’s non-essential businesses were permitted to reopen before the state’s scheduled stay-at-home deadline on April 30. Businesses are instructed to follow a “retail-to-go” strategy where customers order online and pick up items outside. State parks are set to reopen as well.

“It’s about time a lot of people in the state of Texas are going to have the opportunity to go to a hair salon and start taking care of their vital needs,” Texas Gov. Greg Abbott told Fox News. “But most importantly, we want these entrepreneurs, these small businesses to have the opportunity to open up.”

In Tennessee, dine-in restaurants are permitted to reopen with limited capacity starting Monday. Retail stores will reopen on Wednesday. Gov. Bill Lee confirmed he will not extend the state’s April 30 stay-at-home order. Some major cities within the state, such as Nashville and Memphis, will follow the direction of local authorities in reopening local businesses. 

Minnesota Gov. Tim Walz opened many outdoor venues on April 17 such as golf courses, bait shops, outdoor shooting ranges and marina services. Minnesota’s stay-at-home extension continues until May 4. 

South Carolina Gov. Henry McMaster allowed non-essential businesses – such as department stores and flea markets – to reopen on April 20. Outdoor areas such as public beach access points and public boat ramps have already begun to reopen. 

“We are still in a very serious situation,” McMaster said. “People want to work, they need to work … and we’re going to do all that we can do to see that they can do that, and continue with their lives, as much as possible.”

Ohio Gov. Mike DeWine is scheduled to announce plans to reopen on April 27.

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