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Coronavirus Cases Drops in Multnomah County

Multnomah County moved into the state’s lowest risk level Thursday. There are few people more excited than those working in the restaurant industry.The county dropped from high risk down to lower risk, the lowest of the state’s four COVID-19 risk levels, after 65% of Multnomah County residents 16 and older were vaccinated with at least one COVID shot.

Restaurants in the county can have up to 50% capacity indoors and outdoors with no upper limit on the number of customers. The restaurant can hold 400 people and could have as many as 200 insides under the new rules.Major change from the restrictions in place which limited the number of people to 25% capacity or 50 people.

Jason Brandt, CEO of the Oregon Restaurant and Lodging Association, said the new, looser restrictions are not expected to change. This is better for Multnomah County than just getting into lower risk. They are locked into lower risk at 50% without total person caps for the number of people on site. And they get to stay there until the risk categories are gone entirely. This is good news for operators in the county.

Brandt said some restaurants are already seeing as much business as they can handle and are now looking for more employees. Restrictions for indoor recreation, gyms and other facilities moved from a limit of 25% or 50 people to a limit of 50% capacity. The same changes went into effect for theatres and concert halls. Retail stores are now allowed up to 75% of their maximum capacity, up from the 50% capacity limit under high-risk restrictions.

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