As waves of businesses invite employees and clients back into the workplace across South Carolina, Dr. Anthony Fauci, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, praised the state for its strategic reopening strategy.
"You have put things in place that I think would optimize your capability of reopening," Fauci said in response to Sen. Tim Scott's update at the U.S. Senate COVID-19 hearing on Tuesday. As I was thinking as you were speaking, I would almost want to clone that and make sure other people can hear about that and see what you've been doing. It looks like you're ready to progress carefully because you've put into place a very good system."
Gov. Henry McMaster thanked thecounsel from the AccelerateSC task force his office helped compose for developingindustry-specific guidelines for returning to work, which according to its original 30-day timeline, should wrap up within the next few weeks.
All four sub-groups are expected to meet next week, but there have been no announcements about disbanding the task force yet. In the meantime, the group continues to tackle a variety of issues ranging from reopened amusement parksto suspended business license penalties.
"Slowly but surely, more restaurants are beginning to open and customers are beginning to feel more comfortable," Bobby Williams, CEO and co-owner of Lizard's Thicket and member of the AccelerateSC Response Team, said Thursday following the reopening of dining rooms on May 11. "Every day, we're seeing an increase. It's worked out very nicely. We wanted it slow. From Monday through yesterday, we've seen a nice increase with foot traffic. It's coming, but it's going to be a couple more weeks until we get back to full swing."
Williams said he expects McMaster any day now to reopen amusement and tourist attractions that enable customers to social distance in line with guidelines his team helped draft. Smaller, low-contact attractions like go-cart tracks will likely be the first toreopen, while larger theme parks will remain on the waiting list.
On Monday, restrictions on close-contact service providers like spas and hair salons, gyms and pools will be rolled back with recommendations stemming from the response team's sessions.
Lou Kennedy, CEO of Nephron Pharmaceuticals and fellow Response Team member, said her group pulled ideas from Center for Disease Control guidelines, as well as regulations used by YMCA and other organizations that continued...