New Orleans bars open indoor seating at 25% capacity under new Modified Phase Two guidelines

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FILE – In this Thursday, March 19, 2020, file photo, a view of the nearly deserted Bourbon Street, which is normally bustling with tourists and revelers, is seen in the French Quarter of New Orleans. Like many cities around the country, New Orleans is currently under a shelter-in-place order as it grapples with a growing number of coronavirus cases. In Louisiana, Gov. John Bel Edwards has repeatedly sounded the alarm about how Louisiana has the third-highest rate of confirmed virus cases per capita while at the same time noting the difficulty of the small state getting supplies. (AP Photo/Gerald Herbert, File)

NEW ORLEANS — Mardi Gras has passed and the bars have reopened.

Under the new COVID-19 guidelines, bars and breweries were allowed to resume indoor service at 25% of their permitted occupancy.

Since the City eased restrictions and reentered a Modified Phase Two on Jan. 29, 2021, the case counts, positivity rate, and transmission rate in New Orleans have all decreased, allowing for further easing of some restrictions.

In line with the State of Louisiana emergency order, bars and breweries will be allowed to operate indoors at 25% capacity as long as the positivity rate in Orleans Parish remains below 5%.

Bars can only be open from 8 a.m. to 11 p.m., per state proclamation.

Recent local and national cases of the UK, South African, and Brazilian variant strains of SARS-COV-2 continue to cause concern for local public health officials. Therefore, the current limit on gathering sizes for parties, special events, weddings, etc., will remain as is – indoor gatherings limited 10 people and outdoor gatherings limited to 25 with masking and social distancing required in both settings.

These Modified Phase Two guidelines will be in place for a minimum of three weeks beginning Feb. 19, 2021, at 6 a.m.

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