Rapid City Council Eases Coronavirus Rules

RAPID CITY, S.D. (AP) – Limits placed on Rapid City businesses to help slow the spread of the coronavirus will be eased under a resolution passed 7-2 Monday night by the city council.

The measure adopts lesser restrictions unveiled last week by Mayor Steve Allender that allow restaurants, bars, and other business reopen, but with one change.

Mayor Allender proposed limiting restaurants and bars to 10 customers or 1 for every 125-square feet of floor space, but the council – with his blessings – adopted an alternative suggested by a businessman that allows up to half of the room’s occupancy limit.

The new rules go into effect Wednesday with Allender admitting there are some residents who feel they go too far and others who believe they don’t go far enough in opening up the economy.

He said “there are people very nervous about the situation (who) are going to feel like we let them down tonight and time will tell” who was right.

The new rules require 6-feet between any tables, chairs, or bar stools except for members of the same household while video lottery machines must be cleaned and disinfected between each customer.

The 6-foot social distance spacing still applies while waiting for service or entry into businesses, and employees of hair or nail salons and barber shops must wear masks covering the nose and mouth during customer contact times.

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