Monday 1 June, 2020

USVI eases COVID-19 restrictions on the food and beverage sector

Governor Albert Bryan Jr.

Governor Albert Bryan Jr.

Dine-in services at restaurants and bars will resume on the US Virgin Islands from May 26.

Governor Albert Bryan Jr made the announcement on Thursday during his coronavirus (COVID-19) update.

He said Restaurants can offer dine-in service at 50 percent capacity or 50 customers, wherever is less.

There must also be a six feet distance between tables and barstools and dining parties are limited to six people

All employees must also wear facial coverings and the establishments must provide proper hygiene and sanitisation stations for staff and patrons.

“We will be putting out more specific guidelines in the executive order this weekend, but generally our guidelines follow those of the CDC and the National Restaurant Association,” Bryan said.

“By opening prior to our relaxation of the leisure travel restrictions, we hope to give these establishments an opportunity to properly outfit their establishments and to recall their staff to prepare for the return of visitors to the territory.”

The 24-bed facility at the Regional Training Institute in the VI National Guard Complex on St Croix has been completed and Bryan stated the territory continues to stockpile ventilators and the anti-viral medicine Remdesivir.

The territory record 69 confirmed cases of COVID-19. Sixty-one cases have recovered while six people have died.

The Governor also revealed that another 6,132 stimulus checks, totalling US$9,985,611, were mailed out this week. The Labour Department has also issued 6,429 unemployment cheques worth around US$4.6 million.

Additionally, the U.S. Small Business Administration has approved 1,260 applications.

Bryan said businesses have received US$112,608,137 in Paycheck Protection Program funding while 104 businesses have been approved for Economic Injury Disaster Loans, which provide up to US$2 million of financial assistance to small businesses or private non-profit organizations that suffered economic injury because of the pandemic.

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