Indoor dining will return to New Mexico as Governor Michelle Lujan Grisham prepares to alter the public health order in place across the state.
A downward trend in COVID-19 cases has led the state to try and reopen indoor dining for restaurants, wineries and breweries. These businesses will be allowed to operate at 25 percent of normal indoor capacity starting Saturday (Aug. 29). Outdoor seating is still allowed at 50 percent capacity.
“I know New Mexicans are ecstatic about our recent progress against COVID-19,” said Lujan Grisham in a press release. “But, given what we know about this virus, we must sound a note of caution: Our progress is only as good as our willingness to stay the course.”
The revision to the order will also allow places of worship to up their capacity from 25 percent to 40 percent starting Saturday.
The governor is expected to make the announcement during a 3 p.m. press conference on Thursday (August 27). The conference will be streamed via the governor’s Facebook page and will also be available on YouTube in Spanish.
Restaurants were given the notice to close indoor dining in July after only a few weeks of being allowed to serve. Restaurants were cut back to patio service as well as take out orders only.
Businesses that made more than 50 percent of sales from alcohol in 2019 have remained closed since March. In Taos this impacted popular venues such at the Alley Cantina near the plaza. It is unclear whether the ban on service at these establishments will be lifted.