Kitsap, Clallam counties move to Phase 2 reopening

PORT ORCHARD, Wash. -- Kitsap and Clallam counties join at 24 other counties in Washington in reopening hair and nail salons, retail shops, restaurants and more under Phase 2 of the governor's plan to reopen the economy.

The state has approved variance requests from both counties effective immediately

The other counties that received variances for Phase 2 are: Adams, Asotin, Columbia, Cowlitz, Ferry, Garfield, Grant, Grays Harbor, Island, Jefferson, Kittitas, Lewis, Lincoln, Mason, Pacific, Pend Orielle, San Juan, Skamania, Spokane, Stevens, Thurston, Wahkiakum, Walla Walla, and Whitman.

Under Phase 2, the following businesses can reopen:

    “We know COVID-19 is still present in our county and we believe our case count will increase again unless Kitsap County residents continue to take steps to protect their health and prevent the spread of the virus,” Kitsap Public Health District Health Officer Dr. Susan Turner said.

    “As restrictions are gradually relaxed under the Safe Start plan, it becomes vital that each of us take personal responsibility for safeguarding the health of our community. The community has done an amazing job of responding to this crisis and we need to keep working together to stay on track.”

    To apply for a variance, counties must have an average of less than 10 new cases per 100,000 residents over a 14-day period. The application process requires support from the local health officer, the local board of health, local hospitals, and the county commission/council.

    Each county must demonstrate they have adequate local hospital bed capacity as well as adequate PPE supplies to keep health care workers safe. The application must include plans for:

      The variance requests are reviewed by the secretary of health, who can approve the plans as submitted, approve with modifications or deny the application. If circumstances change within the jurisdiction, the variance can be revoked.

      The rest of the state is still under Phase 1, which allows day use activities at most state parks and some outdoor recreation like hunting, golfing and fishing to resume.

      Businesses allowed to reopen under Phase 1 include:

      -Existing construction that meets agreed upon criteria
      – Landscaping
      – Auto/RV/boat/ORV sales
      – Retail (curb-side pick-up orders only)
      – Car washes
      – Pet walkers

      Read the state's "Safe Start" plan here.