Rules set for the reopening of the catering service in Georgia | Business

ATLANTA – Restaurants across Georgia will be allowed to reopen food courts starting Monday, more than three weeks after Gov. Brian Kemp imposed a shelter-in-place order shutting them down.

But restoration operations will be far from normal, thanks to 39 restrictions listed in a Kemp executive order issued Thursday aimed at deterring the spread of COVID-19.

Many of the restrictions are similar to those the state applies to close contact businesses like barbershops and hair salons, which were allowed to reopen on Friday for the first time since April 3.

All restaurant employees should wear masks at all times, and workers with signs of illness such as fever, cough, or shortness of breath should be screened and evaluated. Employees who become ill at work or show signs of illness should be sent home.

Restaurant owners will be required to modify their floor plans to ensure at least six feet of separation between tables and use physical barriers for booth seating where possible. Groups at tables should be limited to no more than six, and seating by reservation only or by call in advance should be practiced where possible.

Customers will not be allowed to congregate in waiting areas or bars. Salad bars or buffets will be banned, and self-service drinks, condiments and utensils should be eliminated.

Restaurants should be thoroughly cleaned and sanitized before reopening to restaurant patrons, with cleaning and sanitizing being maintained on a regular basis to move forward.

The decree encourages restaurants to use disposable paper menus where possible. Customers should be provided with hand sanitizer, including sanitizing stations when available.

Despite the restrictions, Kemp has drawn criticism from many quarters for reopening businesses too soon, from President Donald Trump to statewide mayors, Democratic lawmakers and public health experts.

State and local Republican leaders and some business groups have championed the move as a first step towards a more robust reopening of Georgia’s economy that will bring the growing ranks of the unemployed back to work and collecting paychecks.

Kemp’s statewide shelter-in-place order is due to expire next Thursday, unless he acts to extend it.

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