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There's been a lot of speculation about what would and would not be included in Louisiana's Phase 3 mandate. Outside of the mask mandate remaining in place, very little details were provided by the Governor yesterday at his press conference. Many speculated about additional capacity in businesses, the reopening of bars and loosening of social distance guidelines. Well, today, the Governor outlined the full Phase 3 plan which goes into effect tonight at midnight. The Governor has stated that moving the state to Phase 3 was "the toughest decision" he's had to make since taking office.

As expected, capacity limits have been upgraded. Businesses that were operating at 50% capacity are now allowed to expand to 75% capacity. Casinos are staying at 50% capacity. At all locations, alcohol consumption is now being limited. Establishments will not be allowed to serve alcohol after 10 p.m., alcohol will only be served to customers seated at a table and, at certain establishments like bars (to our understanding, even those that have changed business models to reopen) patrons must be cleared by 11 p.m..

Bars will remain closed in parishes with higher coronavirus case counts. Those not in 'hot spots' (5% positivity rate or lower for two weeks and with approval from the Parish) will be able to reopen at 25% capacity or 50 people total. Live music and dancing are also still currently banned in indoor venues.

Weddings, birthdays and other private events (indoor & outdoor) is limited at 50% or 250 people if social distancing can't be maintained. Sporting events (high school, college, pro) will be allowed to take place with 25% of crowd capacity. However there will be no alcohol sales at the games.

The Governor is also working with LDH to pilot a program for nursing home visits. Much like bars, only parishes with a 5% positivity rate or lower will qualify. It will also require the nursing home to be case free for 14 days.

The mandate will go into effect at midnight and last until October 9th. For more details, visit the Louisiana Governor's website on coronavirus recovery here.

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