The end is here.
On Tuesday, California lifted most of its Covid-related restrictions on bars, restaurants and other businesses and activity, opening up an economy that has been battered amid the pandemic.
Starting today, businesses will also be left to set mask policies, according to the Los Angeles Times. And for the first time since last March, they can operate at full capacity.
“There will be no capacity limits and no distancing requirements,” said Dr. Barbara Ferrer, L.A. County’s public health director.
Along with restaurants and bars, amusement parks, gyms, movie theaters and arcades can all operate at full capacity.
Vaccinated employees, however, will likely have to wait to go unmasked until a decision from the California Occupational Safety and Health Standards Board, which could come later this month.
Some events and venues will still have restrictions. Organizers of indoor events with more than 5,000 attendees must verify that guests are fully vaccinated or have tested negative for Covid-19 in the previous 72 hours.
State officials recommend outdoor events of more than 10,000 people do the same, but won’t require it.
The whiplash of Covid cases over the last year and a half have led California and L.A. County to impose then lift then reimpose restrictions as numbers ebbed and flowed. The worst months in the state were between late November and around February.
State and county officials — through a colored four-tier system — have gradually eased restrictions and raised capacity limits for various businesses as vaccination rates increased.
L.A. County has been in the least restrictive tier since early May. Indoor operations were allowed at restaurants, but with a maximum capacity of 50 percent. Bars were capped at 25 percent Theaters were also capped at 50 percent and large live indoor events were limited to just 10 percent.
[LAT] — Dennis Lynch