Nevada Gov. Steve Sisolak listens to a reporter's question during a news conference in Carson City, Nev., Thursday, May 7, 2020, after Sisolak announced that Nevada will begin allowing restaurants, salons and other non-essential businesses to reopen starting Saturday. It's the first easing of restrictions imposed in Nevada seven weeks ago to stop the spread of the coronavirus. Casinos are among businesses that will remain closed for now.
Gov. Steve Sisolak said Friday he is proud that the vast
majority of Nevadans and businesses are taking the coronavirus restrictions
seriously and complying with the rules as the state begins reopening its
He said the state is in day 20 of a downward trajectory with
just 9 percent of those tested coming back positive. He said that is far better
than the 12.5 percent at the peak a few weeks back.
He said the number of hospitalizations also continues to
drop and the state’s hospitals have bed capacity and equipment including
Sisolak said testing continues to ramp up in Nevada with
more than 17,000 tests conducted last week.
“That number will continue to grow as we move forward,” he
said. “We have capacity but people have to go and get tested.”
He said the state now has excess capacity and that people
who want a test should call their provider or attend one of the drive-through
testing sites now open across the state.
Walmart is opening testing at 10 of its Nevada stores and
casinos are providing tests for workers in preparation for them returning to
How quickly Nevada moves to Phase 2 of the reopening, he
said, depends on Nevadans and businesses continuing to follow the restrictions
including social distancing, hand washing and wearing masks.
Sisolak emphasized that wearing masks is critical to the
progress the state has achieved so far and urged everyone to wear one when out.
He said the state and local officials are also moving
forward with enforcement, looking for violators. He said some are not in
compliance but promised that, for those businesses, “there will be
repercussions as a result of that,” because, he said, those businesses are
putting everyone at risk.
State and local regulators have made it clear businesses
that flout the rules could face fines, restrictions and even the loss of their
He said the division of Industrial Relations reports to him
that the majority of businesses are in compliance with the restrictions he
outlined for Phase 1 a week ago. He said he and his team of experts will need
at least two full weeks of data to analyze if it is safe to move forward and
further ease restrictions.
Sisolak declined to give reporters an idea of what Phase 2
reopening rules would look like saying he is working through that with his team
of experts. He said businesses and many others are providing their
recommendations as they prepare those rules.
He said the goal is to, “continue opening the Nevada economy
in a safe and responsible manner.”