HARRISBURG, Pa. (CBS/AP) — Nearly 4 million people in 34 counties are now in the least-restrictive phase of Gov. Tom Wolf’s three-step pandemic reopening plan as the governor prepares to announce Friday that more counties can join them. Sixteen more counties entered the “green” phase of Wolf’s spotlight-colored pandemic reopening plan on Friday, meaning gyms, barbers and hair salons can reopen, as can indoor dining at restaurants and bars.
Gatherings of up to 250 people are allowed, although large demonstrations over the past week around Pennsylvania protesting police brutality routinely exceeded 250 people.
Meanwhile, nearly 6 million people in Philadelphia and nine other counties in hard-hit southeastern Pennsylvania became the last in the state Friday to shed the tightest restrictions under Wolf’s reopening plan. That includes the stay-at-home order that is part of the so-called “red” phase.
Gatherings in the yellow phase are still limited to 25 people.
Philadelphia, though, is taking an even more measured approach to reopening. Unlike the state, the city is not yet recommending gatherings of 25 people, and even though allowed by the state, the city of Philadelphia will not allow outdoor dining just yet.
In the green phase, businesses are required to maintain social distancing measures, including requiring customers and employees to wear masks and to limit capacity.
Wolf administration officials haven’t said when those requirements would lift, but Health Secretary Dr. Rachel Levine suggested that they may remain in place until there is a safe and effective vaccine that is widely available.
(© Copyright 2020 CBS Broadcasting Inc. All Rights Reserved. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)