Racine public health officials loosen COVID-19 restrictions effective March 22

RACINE, Wis. (CBS 58) -- The city of Racine released a revised version of the "Safer Racine" ordinance Friday, March 19, loosening some restrictions and allowing for capacity increases in many categories.

Modifications will go into effect at 12:01 a.m. on Monday, March 22.

Updates include: 

  • Bars, restaurants, indoor recreational facilities, faith-based places of worship, swimming pools and indoor places of arts and culture will be allowed to operate at 75% capacity as long as 6 feet of physical distancing can be maintained. 
  • Indoor and outdoor mass gatherings will be allowed up to 75% capacity or no more than 200 persons, whichever is less (up from 50% or 50 people, whichever was less) for venues that require city approval or permits, or venues such as weddings, concerts, banquets, funerals, concerts, and festivals. 
  • High-risk recreational activities, such as school sports, are permitted with a limit of two spectators per player, coach, or officiating personnel and no more than 75% occupancy of the facility or 200 persons, whichever is less. 

For more details, visit racinecoronavirus.org/reopening.

City of Racine Public Health Administrator Dottie-Kay Bowersox issued the following statement with the release of the updated ordinance: 

“This week, the City of Racine, recognized one year since the notification of the first COVID-19 case within its jurisdiction.  During the previous twelve months, the worldwide pandemic has taken so many lives, required modifications to our lifestyles, and caused economic devastation which has taken its toll on the entire community.  With that stated, the City is experiencing a significant and sustained decline in the number of positive COVID-19 cases, increased and consistent testing opportunities, timely notification of positive cases and contact tracing, as well as increased vaccine distribution opportunities.  

The decrease in cases is also due to the efforts of all Racinians through the use of facial masks, physical distancing, staying home when ill, celebrating special events only with household members, and frequent hand washing and sanitizing.  As we continue these efforts and as eligibility for vaccinations is expanded, the hope is that 2021 will be a year of recovery and resilience.   

The Safer Racine reopening plan will continue to be evaluated and updated with the hope that these trends will continue but this relies on this community’s vigilance and willingness to get vaccinated.  As the State of Wisconsin expands eligibility and vaccine supply, it is imperative that all applicable Racinians get vaccinated.  This is the only way to ensure the protection of each of us from the virus and a return to the normalcy that we have compromised in order to ensure the health of the community.  

On behalf of the City of Racine Public Health Department I would like to sincerely thank everyone for your sacrifices over the last twelve months as we look forward to a brighter summer.  As a reminder, the City’s Mask Ordinance is in effect and is one of the best ways to ensure the safety of your family, friends, and those you have yet to meet. This has been a long marathon, but there is reason to be optimistic and the finish line could be in sight. Let’s support one another and get there together." 

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