Governor sets goal of May 4 to begin lifting restrictions

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LITTLE ROCK, Ark. — The Governor pointing out today during a press conference what it will look like to start re-opening the state and where Arkansas stands in criteria mapped out yesterday in a plan to open up nationwide.

Governor Hutchinson has emphasized time and time again that COVID-19 is a health crisis, but has affected the economy too.

Today he announced possibly by May 4 he wants to start lifting some of the restrictions that are currently in place.

Now in order for us to get there, Governor Hutchinson said there’s four things we have to do

  • Restoring Arkansas economy in a timely fashion
  • Protecting most vulnerable
  • Maintaining healthcare, expanding public health capacity
  • Prevent resurgence of COVID-19

Governor Hutchinson said this is something that everyone has to participate in over the next two weeks.

During Phase 1, we would still practice social distancing some people would still telework, but if possible some people can return to work.

Governor Hutchinson also noted that common areas would still be closed along with schools and youth activities. He said some elective surgeries could resume and large venues like movie theaters could re-open if they can keep people separated.

This plan comes after Hutchinson had a meeting with President Trump and all the other state Governors. Hutchinson said the layout they were given helps him set the tone on how to move forward.

“What it does for me as a Governor, rather than everyone chatting their own path there is some commonality that we can start within the criteria they offered and so they sent the criteria that every state can look at and saying this is where you ought to be if you want to start opening businesses and releasing some of the restrictions,” said Governor Hutchinson.

Washington State predicted that the state would see our peak May 2, but Hutchinson said if we continue to flatten the curve as we are now that will change.

Phase 1 is just the first part of the pan. There are three phases total, Hutchinson said he’s just focused on getting to the first phase right now.

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