Governor Northam announced on Friday, November 13 the following measures which took at midnight on Sunday, November 15:
Reduction in public and private gatherings: All public and private in-person gatherings must be limited to 25 individuals, down from the current cap of 250 people. This includes outdoor and indoor settings. This does not impact the current capacity restrictions to which restaurants must adhere, which include having tables 6 feet apart and no standing or serving alcohol in bar areas.
It does apply to those restaurants, breweries, wineries and other event venues that book private groups. Any private group events over 25 people are prohibited in either indoor or outdoor settings.
The social gathering limit applies only to social gatherings. The presence of more than 25 individuals performing functions of their employment or assembled in an educational instructional setting is not a “gathering.”
Expansion of mask mandate: All Virginians aged five and over are required to wear face coverings in indoor public spaces. This expands the current mask mandate from individuals aged 10 and over to wear face coverings in indoor public settings.
Strengthened enforcement within essential retail businesses: All essential retail businesses, including grocery stores and pharmacies, must adhere to statewide guidelines for physical distancing, wearing face coverings, and enhanced cleaning. While certain essential retail businesses have been required to adhere to these regulations as a best practice, violations will now be enforceable through the Virginia Department of Health as a Class One misdemeanor.
On-site alcohol curfew: The on-site sale, consumption, and possession of alcohol is prohibited after 10:00 p.m. in any restaurant, dining establishment, food court, brewery, microbrewery, distillery, winery, or tasting room. All such establishments must close by 12 midnight and not reopen until 5am. Virginia law does not distinguish between restaurants and bars, however, under current restrictions, individuals that choose to consume alcohol prior to 10:00 p.m. must be served in a restaurant (not the bar area) and remain seated at tables six feet apart. Delivery and takeout services are unaffected.
What else is changed?
Entertainment and public amusement venues, and racetracks and speedways are now limited to 30% occupancy or 250 people.
Fitness and Exercise group classes are now limited to 25 people.
For more information about state restrictions, please visit the NFIB.com/Virginia or contact your Virginia team – Nicole Riley, State Director at [email protected] or Sharon Sykes, Grassroots Manager at [email protected].