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Dine-in restaurants, retail cleared to reopen in Stanislaus County

Stanislaus County is officially back in business. The county got an approval that will bring the return of dine-in restaurants and retail businesses.

STANISLAUS COUNTY, Calif. — Modesto, Turlock, and the rest of Stanislaus County have gotten the green light to reopen their dine-in and retail options.

Stanislaus County Supervisor Kristin Olsen announced Wednesday that the county's attestation was approved by the state. The move means dine-in restaurants and retail businesses like shopping centers are clear to return in the county, with some modifications.

The order moves them further into the Expanded Phase 2 of reopening. 

 “Our goal is to open Stanislaus County in a way that minimizes the risk for COVID-19 transmission, and we have a business community that is committed to reopening safely and responsibly to ensure our residents remain healthy and safe,” said Dr. Julie Vaishampayan, Stanislaus County Health Officer. “I have faith that members of our community will do their part in preventing the spread of the coronavirus, because that is what it is going to take for all of us to succeed including washing hands frequently, staying home when sick, and wearing a face covering”.

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Some businesses have already taken a head start on planning their reopening.

"We’ve been waiting for quite some time for this to happen. Now, it’s gonna take us four or five days to gear up to actually open up the restaurant," said Bob Campana, owner of Modesto's Redwood Cafe.

From readily available disinfectant dispensers and separated bathroom sinks to deep cleanings of the kitchen and dining area, the restaurant has put its best foot forward to meet health department recommendations and limit potential virus exposure. 

"We've basically done everything we can to make it so that the guest and the staff is safe from a standpoint to be able to wash their hands with a disinfectant anywhere in the building," Campana said.

The restaurant is even taking their social distancing to an artisan level, building walls around their tables with style in mind.

Ultimately with all the modifications and additions, Campana hopes people will feel confident that they are in a safe environment when they go out to eat. 

"I think that [people] should just say 'God Bless America,'" Campana said. "We’re gonna make it through here in a better way and going forward, hopefully, we’re a better country for it."

As other business get the news about reopening, the county is urging businesses to review state standards for reopening or the Good To Go Stanislaus Guidance for Businesses. Businesses will have to do the following before they reopen:

  • Perform a detailed risk assessment and implement a site-specific protection plan.
  • Train employees on how to limit the spread of COVID-19, including how to screen themselves for symptoms and stay home if they have them.
  • Implement individual control measures and screenings
  • Implement disinfecting protocols
  • Implement physical distancing guidelines

For additional guidance in reopening in Stanislaus County or questions, businesses can call the Business Services line at 209-558-4473.

RELATED: 

The county says statewide stay-at-home orders are still in effect, meaning people are required to stay home unless they're doing activities allowed under the order. Locally, the county recently rescinded their stay-at-home order, with officials saying they no longer believed the order was necessary due to lower hospitalizations and ER visits. 

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