Mayor Proposes Changes to Relax Maui’s “Safer Outside” Rules

Thailand Cuisine. PC: Wendy Osher (9.15.21)

Maui Mayor Michael Victorino has sent a request to Governor David Ige to relax Maui’s Safer Outside Emergency Health Rules, which went into effect on Sept. 15, 2021.

“Mayor Victorino is optimistic about the process made in lowering our case counts and taking pressure off of our health care facilities. As a result, we are formally requesting that Governor Ige consider some proposed changes to relax some of the current restrictions,” said Deputy County Managing Director Josiah Nishita during an afternoon press briefing on Tuesday.

“As is typical with our rule revision process with the state, to prevent any confusion, we’re not going to discuss the specifics of those relaxation measures as we continue to work with the governor and Department of Health on that,” said Nishita.

Nishita said the Mayor’s office will make an immediate announcement as soon as the governor approves the revisions; and if approved, the revised rules are anticipated to go into effect on Friday, Oct. 1.

The Safer Outside rules imposed vaccine guidelines for bars, restaurants, gyms and other “high risk” businesses. Under the current rules, these businesses were asked to operate at 50% capacity indoors, provided that all customers 12 years of age and older provide proof of full vaccination.

For full and part-time employees, they are currently required to show proof of vaccination or a negative COVID-19 test taken within seven days.

The Safer Outside rules also imposed a reduction in capacity for commercial recreational boating, ground transportation, and commercial tour operators from 75% to 50%; and called for no spectators at indoor or outdoor sporting events.

Maui County’s seven day average of cases peaked at 57.6 per 100k on Aug. 25, and has been on a steady decline since the beginning of September, dropping to 17.5 per 100k earlier this week.

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