By Mario Lotmore  |  Lynnwood Times Staff

Olympia, Wash., March 8, 2021 – Today, Republican leaders Sen. John Braun and Rep. J.T. Wilcox sent a letter this afternoon to Governor Jay Inslee requesting him to open businesses, houses of worship and other institutions to 50% capacity and to allow local health jurisdictions determine a county’s readiness for such a move.

The governor announced his “Healthy Washington – Roadmap to Recovery” plan on January 5. On February 25, he said all regions would stay in Phase 2 for the next several weeks. As of March 3, the governor had not identified a Phase 3.

Because the governor has yet to identify a Phase 3 to his plan, on March 4, Republican leaders released Open Safe, Open Now – their plan for Phase 3 and beyond.

The following According to the plan, Phase 3 would return students back into the classroom immediately.

  • All children in grades K-12 would immediately return to the classroom for in-person instruction.
  • School districts would implement safety protocols provided by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
  • Experts from Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health have said distancing in schools should be reduced from six feet to three feet.

Phase 3 of the Open Safe, Open Now plan would immediately increase indoor capacity from 25% to 50% for businesses.

  • Hospitality businesses and public venues statewide, such as restaurants, bars, gyms, movie theaters, museums, libraries, and other entertainment venues, would open to 50% capacity.
  • Bars and restaurants would stop serving alcohol and close at midnight.
  • State parks and other state agencies whose function is tourism/recreation would resume bookings for day-use and overnight facilities at 50% capacity.
  • Indoor weddings and indoor religious services would open to 50% capacity.
  • Professional services would open to 50% capacity.

The plan directs all activities return to 100% capacity for counties that operated at Phase 3 for three weeks with no significant spike in COVID-19 hospitalizations.

Mario Lotmore

Mario Lotmore is originally from The Bahamas and for the last seven years has called Mukilteo, WA his home. Having lived in every region of the United States has exposed him to various cultures, people, and approaches to life. Lotmore created the Lynnwood Times to represent the character of a diverse and growing Lynnwood. The launching of the city’s free community newspaper will only help bring neighborhoods together. Lotmore was an industrial engineer by trade and proven success implementing and managing lean accountable processes and policies within his eighteen years of operations excellence, strategic development, and project management in the aerospace, manufacturing, and banking industries. Over his career he has saved and created hundreds of union and non-union jobs. Lotmore is the President of a Homeowner Association, an active Science Technology Engineering and Mathematics volunteer in his community, and former Boeing 747 Diversity Council leader. Mario’s talent is finding “that recipe” of shared destiny to effectively improve the quality of life for others.

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