KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (WVLT) -- Knox County and the City of Knoxville started Phase Two of the community's reopening plan on Tuesday, May 26.
Health officials said most industries can operate in phase two if they can maintain safety and health precautions.
Any business that was open in phase one can remain open in the second phase.
In phase two of the reopening process, social gatherings are limited to 50 people maximum. Officials said during this phase, non-essential travel can be cautiously resumed. Businesses are asked to continue encouraging telework whenever possible and are advised to slowly increase services to give the business time to build and test safety protocols.
“Moving into phase two is not a return to pre-pandemic normal, but it is a small step in helping us get there,” Knox County Mayor Glenn Jacobs said. “We must not forget that this situation has caused almost-irreparable damage to the local economy, creating significant hardships for many families and placing a tremendous burden on small business owners. Only by working together and supporting one another can our community begin seeing ‘normal’ within reach.”
Knoxville Mayor Indya Kincannon said she is optimistic that if everyone follows the safety guidelines, Knoxville will be able to reopen and move forward without seeing a spike in COVID-19 cases.
“We have let the science and data guide our response throughout this pandemic and it is reassuring that our benchmarks continue to look favorable here in Knox County," Kincannon said.
Health officials said it is important that residents continue to follow the five core actions:
- Physical distancing
- Wearing cloth face coverings
- Frequent and proper handwashing
- Cleaning surfaces
- Staying home if you’re sick or instructed to isolate/quarantine
KCHD will assess the status of phase two on June 12, and will make potential recommendations at that time.
Businesses allowed to open include:
- Bars and breweries
- Sports fields
- Night clubs
- Bowling alleys
To read the full phase two plan including a list of all businesses allowed to reopen click here.
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