SANTA FE, N.M. (KRQE) – Governor Michelle Lujan Grisham officially announced Thursday that the state Public Health Emergency Order will be extended to May 15. The extension and new changes go into effect Friday at 8 a.m.
The order is effective in all New Mexico counties except for McKinley, San Juan and Cibola County. These counties will remain subject to the terms of the April 11 Public Health Emergency Order through May 15, 2020.
The new changes to the order include:
- Non-essential retailers can operate via curbside pickup and delivery service where permitted by their license.
- State parks to reopen May 1 on a modified day-use-only basis as staff is available. Camping and visitors are still closed. The first to open are Cimarron Canyon, Ute Lake, Brantley Lake, Sumner Lake, Caballo Lake, Cerrillos Hills, Storrie Lake and Villanueva. Day-use fees will be waived to decrease person-to-person interaction through May 15.
- Gun stores can operate by appointment only given need for background checks)
- Pet services (adoption/groomers/daycare/boarding) permitted to operate.
- Veterinarians permitted to operate
- Non-essential Health Care Services, Procedures, and Surgeries are permitted with some rules.
- Golf courses allowed to open for golf only. No dine-in food service or retail allowed. Four golf courses will reopen on Saturday, May 2, including Arroyo del Oso, Ladera, Los Altos, and Puerto del Sol. Certain restrictions are to be followed:
- Face Coverings:
- Golfers maintaining social distancing to the required six feet are not required to wear a face-covering during play.
- Golfers are required to use face coverings while inside buildings or when interacting face to face with staff members whether inside or outside.
- On the Course:
- All practice facilities will be monitored by course marshal to enforce social distancing and driving ranges will be set up to use every-other tee.
- Walking is encouraged and one rider per golf cart unless occupants reside in the same household.
- No sand bottles or pencils will be allowed in golf carts.
- All golf carts will be cleaned between rounds.
- Flag sticks must stay in the hole at all times.
- Restrooms will be cleaned and sanitized every two hours.
- Clubhouse and Parking Lot:
- tee times for twosome will be in eight-minute intervals and foursomes in 12 minutes.
- Transactions will be completed at the door or walk-up window. Pro shops will remain closed.
- Golfers must remain six feet apart while waiting to check-in.
- Players are urged to not arrive at the golf course for more than 15 minutes. prior to their tee time and leave the course immediately after a round is completed.
- Snack bars and grills will be open for take-out and carry away only and one person per group may be at the beverage cart.
- Physical distancing will be enforced at all times.
- Face Coverings:
The governor also said that the instruction to stay home remains in place for all individuals at this time. She also reminded New Mexicans that mass gatherings are prohibited and that the 14-day quarantine order remains in place for out-of-state airport arrivals.
Gov. Lujan Grisham said that under current state statutes, liquor stores are prohibited from allowing curbside pickup.
What will remains closed
- Offices, workspace, retailers (except for curbside/delivery)
- Dine-in restaurants and bars (except for curbside/delivery)
- Indoor malls, gyms, salons, theaters and casinos
The governor said New Mexico is “well on our way” to getting closer to reopening. During Thursday’s conference, she said they have a goal to implement Phase 1 by mid-May. However, Gov. Lujan Grisham warned that Phase 1 can only be implemented if New Mexicans continue to follow social distancing rules now. If that happens the governor said Phase 1 would possibly include the following:
- All retailers could operate according to retail COVID-19 safe practices at 20% fire code occupancy.
- Dine-in service at restaurants and bars could be permitted up to 50% occupancy – without barstool or standing service.
- Gyms and salons, hotels and houses of worship could operate in a limited fashion according to COVID-safe practices.
Also Dr. David Scrase from the Department of Human Services said that Los Alamos National Laboratory middle case projections have had a very high correlation with actual counts. He also talked about the changes in the current social distancing policy that would impact these projections.
Dr. Scrase also showed a chart that shows cases in the state have increased in the past six weeks. “If cases are increasing, why talk about opening things up? It’s clear to all of us that the current situation isn’t something we can do for another year… so we have to learn how to reopen and keep our economy going at the same time in a COVID positive world,” said Scrase.
Dr. Scrase also talked a little bit about antibody testing. He says almost all antibody tests have not yet been proven reliable at this time.