Public Health Order Dial changes for Garfield County

March 9, 2021

Garfield County Public Health Consumer Protection staff have reviewed the Eighth Amended Public Health Order 20-36 and outlined some of the key changes that impact Garfield County while in Level Blue. Businesses are responsible for ensuring that social distancing and mask wearing continue. The appendices in the order share helpful best practices for both.

Below are excerpts from the Order (with page numbers) and application for Garfield County in bold text.

A new buffer allows counties 5 days of exceeding their current incidence rate before having to move to a more restrictive Dial level. The buffer cannot exceed 15% of the minimum of the next more restrictive Dial level
The Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment (CDPHE) COVID-19 Dial consists of six levels that counties qualify for based on meeting specific metrics. Counties will remain in a Dial level so long as they continue to meet the metrics in that level. Counties may exceed their Dial level’s disease incidence metric and still remain in that level as long as they do not exceed the minimum of the next more restrictive Dial level’s incidence rate by more than 15% for 5 consecutive days. If the county falls out of compliance with the disease incidence metric associated with that level, CDPHE will confirm the metric with the county and move the county to the next most restrictive level. CDPHE may also move a county to a more restrictive level if there is a lack of sufficient testing or regional or statewide hospital capacity. CDPHE reserves the right to move counties one or more levels more quickly as circumstances warrant.

The metrics for Level Blue are now as follows and congregate care settings are not included in the number of cases for the dial
New COVID-19 cases are at an incidence of no greater than 100 per 100,000 in a one-week period, excluding cases among residents of congregate care facilities (senior care, other residential care, youth corrections, corrections) experiencing outbreaks, or for counties with less than 30,000 population a comparable case count based on the county’s population.

Restaurants (p.8)
The social distance calculator no longer applies. Restaurants may now allow up to half of max occupancy. Last call can extend to 2 a.m.
May operate at 50% of the posted occupancy limit indoors not to exceed 225 people excluding staff, whichever is less, per room. Restaurants may also use any existing, licensed outdoor space for in-person dining with the same group limit of 10 and minimum spacing of 6 feet apart. Restaurants must have or obtain approval from their local government’s permitting, building and fire code oversight agency for any new outdoor dining space prior to use. Pursuant to Executive Order D 2020 091, as amended and extended, all on-premises licensees licensed under Articles 3, 4, and 5 of Title 44 of the Colorado Revised Statutes must cease alcohol beverage sales to end consumers for on-premises consumption and for takeout between 2:00 a.m. and 7:00 a.m. MDT each day; however, counties and municipalities may set more restrictive hours as they determine appropriate.

Indoor Events (p.9)
The social distance calculator no longer applies. Events may have up to half of the space’s max occupancy. Please see the updated Garfield County Event Coordinator Guide document
May be conducted at 50% of the posted occupancy limit not to exceed 175 people, whichever is less, per room excluding staff. If the event is a seated event as described in Appendix I, the event may be conducted at 50% of the posted occupancy limit not to exceed 225 people indoors per room, whichever is less, excluding staff, within their usable space.

Face Coverings (p.19)
Students may remove face coverings to play instruments
Face coverings are required pursuant to Executive Order D 2020 138, as amended and extended, for all individuals in public indoor settings unless the individual is 10 years of age or younger, cannot medically tolerate a face covering, or is participating in one of the activities described in Section II.M of Executive Order D 2020 138, as amended and extended. Additionally, face coverings may be removed in a school classroom setting for the limited purpose of playing an instrument that cannot otherwise be played while wearing a face covering.

Performers (p.59)
Performers can be within 12 feet of the audience if they are wearing masks
Are not included in capacity limits, as long as they do not join the spectator or patron areas at any time and, for performers whose performance includes forced exhalation that increases the potential to aerosolize respiratory droplets, such as speaking or shouting, singing, playing some instruments, or physical exertion, the performers must remain at least 12 feet if wearing a face covering or 25 feet if not wearing a face covering from attendees. If performers join the patron spaces, they must be included in the capacity limit numbers. Performers should also use a separate entrance and exit from spectators or patrons.