Spokane senator says Gov. Inslee will announce changes to allow ‘additional opening’ on Thursday

SPOKANE, Wash. — Governor Jay Insee is expected to announce a change to metrics of the reopening plan that will allow for a little more “flexibility,” Spokane Senator Andy Billig announced unexpectedly Wednesday. 

The surprise announcement came during a virtual Town Hall, which was open to the public. 

One viewer asked how long it would be before Washington could move forward under Governor Inslee’s reopening plan. Specifically, he wanted to know if the metrics were achievable. To that, Billig responded,“There is going to be an announcement tomorrow [Thursday] by the governor, um to, adjust the metics. There will be some, um, additional flexibility.” 

Last week marked a year since the first case of COVID-19 was reported in the US, right in Washington, and yet the state remains at a standstill. 

As of last Friday, Spokane and the nine other counties that constitute the state’s eastern region are only meeting two of the four requirements necessary to progress to phase 2 of the governor’s reopening plan, where more indoor dining is allowed.  

READ: East region will not advance to phase 2 this week as case rate, test positivity increase

“Spokane and, really our whole state, has done a very good job. We are one of the safest states in the country when it comes to COVID,” Billig went on to say. “Because of that, we’re able to do a little bit of additional opening.” 

That said, Billig stressed now is not the time to ease virus safety measures like mask wearing and social distancing. 

“I think those who are looking for just a little more reopening and to do it safely, I think you’ll be glad with what you hear tomorrow,” Billig concluded.

4 News Now has reached out to the Office of the Governor for comment, but has not heard back.

READ: Healthy Washington: Gov. Inslee announces new reopening plan, resumption of some activities