COLUMBUS, Ohio (FOX19) - Ohio Gov. Mike DeWine announced reopening plans for the state’s restaurants and salons Thursday.
Hair salons, nail salons and barbershops can open on May 15.
People with appointments will have to wait in the car, only people with appointments can enter the facility. Lobbies and waiting areas will have social distancing marked.
Masks will be worn by stylists/barbers. Customers may be asked to wear a mask or face covering during their appointment.
For bars and restaurants, outside dining will begin on May 15 and inside dining on May 21.
In Ohio bars and restaurants, floor plans will be created to follow social distancing guidelines. All must be separated by physical barriers and parties must be 10 people or fewer.
Buffets and salad bars will be served to you - no longer self-service.
“Reopening Ohio is a risk, but it’s also a risk if you don’t move forward. We’re on a dangerous road that has never been traveled before in Ohio and the danger is that we relax and stop taking precautions,” Dewine said.
Most employees will be required to wear masks, but there are some exceptions, “Cooks and people who are back in the kitchen and it’s 100 degrees back there. If you’re breathing in and out back there when you’re really hot and in a mask that could be dangerous,” said Britney Ruby Miller with Jeff Ruby’s Steakhouse.
Ruby Miller was part a restaurant advisory group comprising 36 restaurant proprietors and health officials from around the state created the reopening guidelines over the past week.
Some customers may be asked to wear masks, but that is up to the restaurant owners.
A reopening plan for gyms was not in the announcement.
DeWine says on Monday they will discuss childcare.
“For the last week or so, we’ve talked about how we need to do two things at once: bring back the economy and stay safe. We are Ohioans. We can do it. How we open up is so very, very important. The how is an essential part of how successful we’re going to be,” DeWine said.
DeWine says the way Ohio can balance bringing back the economy and still fight the virus is to follow best practices, utilize testing, contact tracing, and practicing responsibility by continuing to social distance, wash hands and wear masks.
“This is a marathon, not a sprint, we’re in this for the long haul," he said.
The next significant date for Ohio’s reopening is Tuesday, May 12, when retail stores and consumer businesses can reopen.
Previously, DeWine had not included dine-in restaurants and salons in Ohio’s phase-one reopening plans.
DeWine currently has his hands full with GOP legislators working to limit the powers of his Department of Health Director, Amy Acton, MD.
The governor has defended Acton on several occasions, admonishing the armed protesters who set up outside her residence earlier this week and saying any criticism should be directed at him.
According to the Ohio Department of Health, there are 22,131 cases and 1,271 deaths.
The numbers generally fall in line with the state’s 21-day averages for cases, deaths, hospitalizations and ICU admissions.
The trend data appears to reflect reporting date rather than date of onset, admission or death, creating artificial spikes where the data on the state’s coronavirus dashboard is considerably smoother.
Acton has called the state’s recent numbers "relatively flat.”