Washington on track to fully reopen its economy by June 30
OLYMPIA, Wash. — Washington is on track for a full reopening of its economy by June 30.
On Thursday, Governor Jay Inslee announced that it could come sooner depending on rates of vaccinations across the state.
The plateau in COVID activity reported across the state earlier this month has turned into a decline and on Tuesday, every county will be in Phase 3 of the state’s reopening plan. That includes counties currently in Phase 2.
The state will stay at 50 percent capacity for most indoor activities until June 30. At that time, the state will return to full capacity for the vast majority of public spaces, like restaurants, movie theaters and bowling alleys.
This full reopening could come sooner if Washington hits a 70 percent initiated vaccination rate. As of Thursday, 57 percent of eligible Washingtonians have received their first dose.
The Centers for Disease Control announced Thursday that they will ease guidance on mask-wearing for fully vaccinated people. State health officials said they have adopted the new guidance, effective immediately.
Despite all of this, Inslee said this does not mean the state of emergency will end in late June. One metric that could impact change to the full economic reopening is ICU capacity. If statewide ICU capacity reaches 90 percent at any point, the state will roll back activities again.
Inslee said the key piece to economic recovery is getting vaccinated. The Department of Commerce is working with the Association of Washington Business to fund gift cards to local businesses for people who are recently vaccinated. The Liquor and CAnnabis Board is also working on a request from wineries and breweries to allow them to “buy a glass or pint” for vaccinated customers.
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