Arizona Governor Extends Stay-at-Home Order, But Non-essential Retailers May Take First Steps to Reopening
Only one day before Arizona’s “Stay Home, Stay Healthy, Stay Connected” order was set to expire, Arizona Governor Doug Ducey issued Executive Order (EO) 2020-33. Governor Ducey announced the modified extension of the stay-at-home order at a press conference on the afternoon of April 29, 2020. Consistent with the previous order, Arizonans must continue limiting their time away from their homes, except for participating in “Essential Activities,” employment in “Essential Functions,” and utilizing services or products of “Essential Businesses.”
Although EO 2020-33 has not changed the classification of “essential” businesses or functions, the governor’s most recent order is the first step in the planned phased reopening of Arizona’s businesses and its economy. “Non-essential” businesses may only “maintain at least minimum basic operations” and conduct “activities that do not require in-person, on-site transactions.” However, retailers that were formerly classified as “non-essential” can begin ramping up operations in limited ways.
On May 4, 2020, previously closed retailers whose businesses “involve the sale of goods” can begin operations and sell goods through:
curbside delivery; or
On May 8, 2020, these same retailers may open and sell goods within their stores, as long as social distancing protocols are followed. EO 2020-33 also makes clear that although these retailers are permitted to begin reopening in phases, no retailers are required to open for business.
The extended stay-at-home order now remains in effect until May 15, 2020. Before Governor Ducey extended the stay-at-home order, we provided considerations for Arizona employers to limit the spread of COVID-19 as employees return to work and the workplace. “Retailers” and other businesses that are preparing for the reopening process may want to continue following updated state guidance and watch for new guidance. According to the order, open employers should “implement rules and procedures that facilitate physical distancing and spacing of individuals of at least six feet” as required and sanitation per expert recommendations and applicable legal requirements, such as guidance from the Centers for Disease Control as incorporated in the governor’s revised order. On May 1, 2020, Governor Ducey and the Arizona Department of Health Services announced a new guideline—Guidance for Retail—in anticipation of retail establishments resuming operations. Restaurants may want to review these new recommendations and watch for evolving guidance and timelines as Governor Ducey specifically referenced this impacted industry during the press conference and anticipates further planning with hospitality leaders across Arizona.