The state is moving El Paso County to Red COVID-19 restrictions

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. (KRDO) – After announcing that it has changed its state COVID-19 phone number guidelines, the Colorado Department of Public Health and the Environment says El Paso County will transition to Red Level guidelines on Friday.

Governor Jared Polis announced a change to the dialing system last week. Under Red Level, restaurants will have to close indoor dining and many other businesses will have to reduce capacity.

According to CDPHE, the move from orange to red is due to high levels of COVID-19 transmission, positivity rate, and hospital care. By Sunday, the two-week incidence rate was 1160.7.

The move will take effect on Friday at 5 p.m. El Paso County is connected to more than a dozen other Colorado counties that have been relocated to red-level restrictions due to increased COVID-19 transmission. No counties were transferred to the Stay At Home order.

“The numbers are very problematic and just rising,” said John Suthers, the mayor of Colorado Springs.

According to Red Level guidelines, personal gatherings with members of multiple households are not allowed. Restaurants are limited to online outdoor dining, gyms are limited to 10% capacity, bars are closed, and in other alcohol establishments, the last call begins at 8 p.m., personal services are limited to 25%, retail is 50%. to, The capacity of places of worship is 25% and that of outdoor events is 25%. Schools may remain open, but are encouraged to engage in hybrid or distance learning.

Click here for a complete list of Colorado color levels.

Mayor Suthers said he is concerned that the restrictions are not “well-planned” and reverses the numbers, and fears that those who normally eat at restaurants will run into public health regulations and organize informal gatherings instead.

“People have to suck and do what they have to do in their own lives to reverse that thing,” Suthers said.

The mayor said he hopes the state and federal government will consider approving additional COVID-19 aid money for small businesses amid stricter guidelines.

It is unclear how long El Paso County will have red-level status due to COVID-19 restrictions.

This is an evolving story, check for updates.