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Multnomah County sets goal of Phase 1 reopening on June 12

The county will apply to reopen on June 5 with the goal of moving into Phase 1 of reopening on June 12.

PORTLAND, Ore. — Multnomah County will apply for Phase 1 of reopening on June 5 with the goal of entering Phase 1 on June 12, County Chair Deborah Kafoury said during a news conference Wednesday afternoon.

"We know that once we reopen we will have additional cases in our community and we want to be prepared. We want everyone to be prepared," Kafoury said.

After applying, county leaders will reevaluate progress on June 10.

Dr. Jennifer Vines, Multnomah County's health officer, said county residents will still be urged to wear face coverings once the county reopens in order to protect themselves and others.

Multnomah County is the only county remaining in the state of Oregon that has not yet applied to enter Phase 1 of Gov. Kate Brown’s reopening plan. Until Wednesday, the county declined to set a date on submitting an application.

Multnomah County does not yet have the required number of contact tracers, which is 15 per 100,000 people. However, the county is now able to contact 95% of positive cases within the first 24 hours, said health director Rachael Banks. 

View Multnomah County's progress dashboard

If Multnomah County enters Phase 1, the following restrictions will be eased:

  • Restaurants and bars for sit-down service: Requirements include 6 feet of social distancing; a limit of groups to parties of 10 or fewer; food and drink consumption must end by 10 p.m.; and workers are required to wear masks. See more details on the requirements
  • Barbers, salons and massage businesses: Requirements include social distancing; appointment-only; and a personal protective equipment and customer list. See more details on the requirements
  • Gyms and fitness centers: Requirements include a maximum gathering limit; social distancing; and sanitation. See more details on the requirements
  • In-person gatherings: Up to 25 people, no travel

The county will need to wait at least three weeks before it is able to enter Phase 2. Currently, no Oregon counties have entered the second phase of reopening.

Nearby Clackamas County entered Phase 1 on Saturday. Washington County, meanwhile, applied to reopen last week, but has not yet been approved by the governor.

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