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City of Falls Church Economic Development Office News

Posted on: November 13, 2020

New COVID-19 Restrictions since Nov. 15

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Governor Northam Announces New Restrictions Started November 15

Per Governor Northam, the following measures are now in effect.

  • Restaurants, Bars, etc. to Stop Serving Alcohol at 10 p.m. and be Closed for Dine-In at Midnight
    The following applies to restaurants, dining establishments, food courts, breweries, microbreweries, distilleries, wineries, and tasting rooms:
    • No alcoholic beverage shall be sold, consumed, or possessed on premises after 10:00 p.m. Alcoholic beverages may continue to be sold via delivery or take-out after 10 p.m., as permitted by existing regulations promulgated by the Virginia Alcoholic Beverage Control Authority.
    • Closure of all dining and congregation areas between the hours of 12:00 a.m. and 5 a.m. Delivery and take-out are permitted during those hours. 
  • Fitness and Exercise Facility Capacity
    • Occupancy must be limited to 75% of the lowest occupancy load on the certificate of occupancy.
    • The total number of attendees (including both participants and instructors) in all group exercise and fitness classes cannot exceed the lesser of 75% of the minimum occupancy load on the certificate of occupancy or 25 persons. 
  • Entertainment and Amusement Businesses Capacity
    The total number of attendees (including both participants and spectators) cannot exceed the lesser of 30% of the lowest occupancy load on the certificate of occupancy, if applicable, or 250 persons.

  • Recreational Sports Capacity
    The total number of spectators cannot exceed the lesser of 30% of the occupancy load of the certificate of occupancy for the venue, if applicable, or 25 spectators per field. Races or marathons may have up to 250 participants, provided staggered starts separate runners into groups of 25 or less.

  • Public and Private In-Person Gatherings Capacity
    All public and private in-person gatherings of more than 25 individuals are prohibited. The presence of more than 25 individuals performing functions of their employment or assembled in an educational instructional setting is not a “gathering.”. A “gathering” includes, but is not limited to, parties, celebrations, or other social events, whether they occur indoors or outdoors.

  • Religious Services Capacity
    Individuals may attend religious services of more than 25 people subject to the requirements listed in Executive Order 67.

  • Exceptions to Mask Requirement
    Any person who is playing a musical instrument, when wearing a mask or face covering would inhibit the playing of the instrument (e.g. wind instrument), if at least 10 feet of physical distancing can be maintained from other persons, whether the rehearsal or performance is indoors or outdoors.

  • Reduction in public and private gatherings to 25 people: All public and private in-person gatherings must be limited to 25 individuals, down from the current cap of 250 people. This includes outdoor and indoor settings.
  • Expansion of mask mandate to ages 5 and older: All Virginians aged five and over are required to wear face coverings in indoor public spaces. This expands the current mask mandate, which has been in place in Virginia since May 29 and requires all individuals aged 10 and over to wear face coverings in indoor public settings.
  • Strengthened enforcement within essential retail businesses: All essential retail businesses, including grocery stores and pharmacies, must adhere to statewide guidelines for physical distancing, wearing face coverings, and enhanced cleaning. While certain essential retail businesses have been required to adhere to these regulations as a best practice, violations will now be enforceable through the Virginia Department of Health as a Class One misdemeanor. 

Why Now?

  • Virginia is averaging 1,500 newly-reported COVID-19 cases per day, up from a statewide peak of approximately 1,200 in May.
  • All five of the Commonwealth’s health regions are currently reporting a positivity rate over five percent.
  • Although hospital capacity remains stable, hospitalizations have increased statewide by more than 35 percent in the last four weeks.

Governor Northam: We are Not Going to Wait for a Rapid Increase in Cases
“COVID-19 is surging across the country, and while cases are not rising in Virginia as rapidly as in some other states, I do not intend to wait until they are. We are acting now to prevent this health crisis from getting worse,” said Governor Northam. “Everyone is tired of this pandemic and restrictions on our lives. I’m tired, and I know you are tired too. But as we saw earlier this year, these mitigation measures work. I am confident that we can come together as one Commonwealth to get this virus under control and save lives."

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