COVID-19 restrictions move to Phase 4 in Nebraska

Published: Sep. 14, 2020 at 4:52 PM CDT
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OMAHA, Neb. (WOWT) - On Monday, most of Nebraska is getting some COVID-19 restriction relief, as all counties except Lancaster County move into Phase 4 of reopening.

Most restaurants and bars were already operating at 100 percent under phase three. Phase 4 allows more people to sit at one table and the self-service light is also back on.

County officials still want restaurant owners to follow basic safety practices issued by the health department.

For Mark Tussey of Tussey’s Casual Grill, 2020 has been a year of ever-changing guidelines because of the coronavirus outbreak.

“It was a big surprise right before St. Patrick’s Day and we had to stop and figure out what we were going to do,” he said.

For a while, it was take-out orders and limited capacity. Under Nebraska’s Phase 4 reopening, restaurants can open up 100 percent.

What that means for Tussey, he can now seat more than eight to a table, so that opens up his party room.

“We’ve had people call wanting to know can we have a group in the party room, what’s the max you can do in there and we kind of tell them what it is and now that it can hold 40 that’s going to be a great help for different events that want to go in there,” he said.

A mask must still be worn to enter Tussey’s and employees are still required to wear one while working and adhere to social distancing guidelines.

A lot of the health department’s recommendations will stay in place.

Andy Wessel, supervisor of the Douglas County Health Department’s information line, said just because things have changed legally does not mean the science has changed.

“What is going to keep people safe, that hasn’t changed at all,” Wessel said. “A lot of what we’re talking about on the info line with people is, yes, things have changed legally in terms of the requirements and directed health measures. That doesn’t mean that the biology of this disease has changed at all.”

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