NewsILLINOIS IS MOVING TO BRIDGE PHASE ON FRIDAY MAY 14TH
The state has met the metrics to initiate the so-called “BRIDGE PHASE” – the phase between our current status and full opening - and will move to this phase on Friday, May 14th.
In March, the Governor announced a new reopening plan that include Phase 4, a Bridge Phase, and then Phase 5. Within this new reopening plan, the Governor included the following requirements to mitigations for each phase:
Moving from Phase 4 to the "Bridge" - Metrics
The state will move into this phase once 70% of the population of adults aged 65+ has received at least their first vaccination dose, AND the ICU bed capacity is at 20% or higher AND the mortality rate, the hospital admissions and case rate for COVID remain stable over a 28-day period.
Moving from the “Bridge” to Phase 5 - Metrics
Illinois will move to this phase when the state reaches a 50% vaccination rate for residents age 16 and over and meet the same metrics and rates required to enter the "bridge" phase, over an additional 28-day period
The state could potentially reopen completely on June 11. The state has already met the vaccine targets. If the hospitalizations, ICU usage and deaths remain stable the state would move to Phase 5 at that time. Once the state moves into the Phase 5 there would be no state restrictions.
BRIDGE PHASE MITIGATIONS
Once the state moves to the Bridge Phase the following retail mitigations will apply.
- Seated areas: Seated areas: Patrons ≥ 6 feet apart; parties ≤ 10
- Standing areas: 30% capacity indoors; 50% capacity outdoors
Health and fitness
- 60% capacity
- Group fitness 50 or fewer indoors or 100 or fewer outdoors
Retail and service counter
You may find the complete Bridge Phase Mitigations HERE.
VACCINATED INDIVIDUALS DO NOT COUNT TOWARDS CAPACITY RESTRICTIONS ON THE STATE LEVEL
Additionally please be aware that vaccinated individuals do not count towards the capacity limits. The Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity (DCEO) provided the following guidance for determining if a consumer has been vaccinated.
How are capacity limits outlined in the guidelines impacted for guests or patrons that are able to demonstrate immunity with proof of a vaccination or negative COVID-19 test?
- Individuals with proof of full vaccination plus 14 days or a negative COVID-19 test (PCR) 1 to 3 days prior to an event or outing do not count against capacity limits. Patrons and attendees must show proof of completed vaccination series or recent negative COVID-19 test prior to entry and are subject to additional state face covering rules and social distancing guidelines of at least 6’ between individuals that are not in the same household or group even if they meet the criteria for demonstrated immunity.
Is this effective immediately, or not until the Bridge Phase?
- This is effective immediately.
Is there a standard way to verify vaccination and/or having received a negative COVID-19 test?
- Following full vaccination, individuals receive a vaccination card from the administrator of the vaccine. At this point, there is no uniform proof of vaccine or negative COVID-19 tests. Businesses should develop methods to evaluate authenticity of the documentation provided.
How are businesses supposed to track individuals who received vaccinations or a negative COVID-19 test?
- Businesses are responsible for managing their capacity and admission procedures within the venue to establish a protocol and system to verify proof of a vaccination plus 14 days or a negative COVID-19 test. Businesses should evaluate privacy concerns to implement a reliable method to manage proof of vaccinations or negative COVID-19 test such as an online registration with a reporting feature and the attendee or guest needs to provide proof of vaccination card or test results in person on the date of the event. If a venue is being utilized by a company for an event, the event host is responsible for compliance. If businesses opt to establish a system of checking proof of vaccination or a negative COVID-19 test to permit greater capacity, businesses should evaluate all applicable data privacy laws for retention of the information. Businesses are not required to ask all patrons of proof of vaccination or negative COVID-19 test if they wish to remain within Restore Illinois Phase 4 and Bridge Phase limits.
Is there a cap on the number of vaccinated individuals an establishment can allow on the premises?
- Venues with fixed seating such as a theater, restaurant, and sporting venue are limited by the requirement to maintain at least 6’ social distancing between groups. Venues without fixed seating need to implement a method to ensure that groups maintain 6’ social distancing within the space. For both fixed seating and non-fixed seating venues, capacities may also not exceed the maximum allowable capacity otherwise indicated by applicable codes (e.g. fire code) if other social distancing measures are feasible.
If an individual has a proven immunity through proof vaccinations or a recent negative COVID-19 test, can those individuals intermingle with people outside their group without social distancing?
- The concept of permitting individuals to not count towards the capacity limits does not permit the individuals to also mix within the venue, event, or other industry space and not follow the other restrictions.
Article provided by IRMA (Illinois Retail Merchants Association)