9 States That Have Reversed Their Reopenings as Coronavirus Surges
The governors of these states have decided to reverse their reopening plans due to spiking COVID cases.
While a good portion of states were eager to reopen months ago, it appears some may have jumped the gun. Governors in a number of states have paused their reopening plans to give their states a chance to recover, but some state officials have taken more drastic measures. Thus far, nine states have reversed some aspects of their reopening plans in an effort to slow their climbing number of coronavirus cases. Here's how they're starting to shut things down. And to learn about the states that could lock back down fully, check out 7 States That Are Headed for a "Full Shutdown."
After cases in California spiked in June and July, Gov. Gavin Newsom reversed some aspects of the state's reopening plan. On July 13, Newsom ordered statewide closures of bars and most indoor activities, including dining and entertainment.
The state is also maintaining a watchlist of counties where cases are climbing. If a county remains on the watchlist for three days, they must shut down additional indoor venues, such as gyms, salons, malls, and houses of worship. And for the places you should be avoiding right now, check out These Are the Places You're Most Likely to Catch Coronavirus, Doctors Say.
Nevada Gov. Steve Sisolak said his state was "not ready" to move into the next phase of reopening because of its rise in coronavirus infections and hospitalizations, according to ABC News. "Nevadans have made enormous sacrifices to get us to where we are today…I don't want to let that all go for naught by us having to take a giant step backwards," Sisolak said in a press conference on June 15.
To avoid going backwards, Sisolak put plans for phase 3 of reopening on hold and, on July 9, rolled back his plans a bit by closing bars in some counties. And for more information about Nevada and other at-risk states, check out 5 States "On the Brink" of Serious COVID Situations, Harvard Doctor Says.
After Arizona's stay-at-home order ended on May 15, the state saw cases climb. In an effort to quell the spike, Gov. Doug Ducey ordered the closure of bars, gyms, movie theaters, water parks, and tubing rentals through July 27, according to The Arizona Republic. Ducey said July 27 is an "aspirational goal" to reopen those businesses again; but that would depend on how the state's case numbers and hospitalizations are looking at that point. To learn more about the coronavirus situation in Arizona, check out This State "Opened Way Too Early" as COVID Spiked, Official Admits.
Colorado was one of the earliest states to lift its stay-at-home order back on April 26. However, in response to spiking cases in bordering states and a slight increase in cases in Colorado, Gov. Jared Polis closed bars and extended the state's Safer at Home phase on July 1, according to The Denver Post.
CBS Denver says some counties will be able to qualify for the next phase of reopening in July, allowing them to open bars again. Polis said officials are also working on guidance that will allow bars to expand outdoor service options as restaurants have.
New Mexico's road to reopening has been a rocky one. While some counties were allowed to reopen with limited capacities beginning May 16, three northwestern counties with significant outbreaks remained shut down until June 1, The New York Times reports.
With the state's COVID situation still not under control, Gov. Michelle Grisham delayed the next phase of reopening indefinitely and ordered restaurants to halt indoor dining beginning July 13, according to USA Today.
Texas has seen a significant spike in cases following the end of its stay-at-home order on April 30. The order started on April 1, which made it one of the country's shortest lockdowns. The surge of cases at the end of June resulted in Gov. Greg Abbott ordering the closure of all bars and reducing restaurant capacity to 50 percent. It marked one of the earliest reopening reversals in the U.S., according to The Texas Tribune.
Due to an increase in coronavirus cases, Louisiana Gov. John Bel Edwards decided, on June 22, that the state would pause in phase 2 of reopening for a few weeks. Unfortunately, cases continued to climb in July, causing Edwards to order bars to close again—except those that offer curbside service—and institute a statewide mask mandate beginning July 13, reports WAFB. And for more states with new mask mandates, check out These 4 States Just Made Face Masks Mandatory.
Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer has largely taken a regional approach when dealing with the coronavirus, and the reopening reversal is no exception. On July 1, Whitmer ordered bars in most of the state to shut down indoor service. The mandate only applied to "licensed establishments that earn more than 70 percent of their gross receipts from alcohol sales," which means most restaurants can continue to operate indoors, according to the Detroit Free Press. The order excludes the Lower Peninsula and the Upper Peninsula of Michigan, so indoor bar service has continued in those areas.
Florida has seen the most significant spike in cases in the U.S. following reopening. Gov. Ron DeSantis reopened bars and larger entertainment venues in select cities in early June as cases continued to climb. Weeks later, when coronavirus showed no sign of stopping, DeSantis shuttered bars on June 26, according to the Tampa Bay Times. Although bars have been closed for a couple of weeks, the state continues to break daily case records. And for more up-to-date information, sign up for our daily newsletter.