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COLUMBIA, S.C. – Gov. Henry McMaster today announced that all previously recommended guidelines for restaurants and other establishments that attract groups of people are now mandatory. The governor’s Executive Order establishing these new measures will go into effect Monday, August 3.

“These limited restrictions are temporary, they are measured, and they are targeted towards what we know works,” said Gov. Henry McMaster. “These measures give South Carolina the best chance to slow the spread of the virus without shutting down the state’s economy – which we cannot and will not do – as many continue to call for.”

Additionally, the governor continued his call for all South Carolinians to wear face coverings when appropriate, and he encouraged local governments to adopt face covering ordinances. The governor also ordered that face coverings must be worn in all state government buildings according to guidelines and procedures developed by the state Department of Administration, effective August 5th.

These guidelines for restaurants, first established by AccelerateSC, have been strongly recommended until now. They are now mandatory and include the following:

Operating dine-in services at no more than 50% of the certificate of occupancy issued by the fire marshal.

Employees and patrons shall be required to wear masks or face coverings.

Tables are to be spaced to keep diners at least six feet apart.

No more than 8 customers per table unless from the same family.

Standing or congregating in bar area of restaurant is prohibited.

Establishments that possess a state permit to sell alcohol shall be subject to these restrictions.

Other types of businesses, facilities, venues, events or mass gatherings which are permitted to open but are required to implement AccelerateSC guidelines include the following: festivals, parades, concerts, theaters, stadiums, arenas, coliseums, auditoriums, grandstands, amphitheaters, gymnasiums, concert halls, dance, halls, performing arts centers, parks, racetracks, or similarly operated entities. These guidelines include, but are not limited to, the following:

Attendance may not exceed 50% of the certificate of occupancy issued by the fire marshal – or 250 persons – whichever is less.

Require the wearing of masks or face coverings as a condition of admission or participation.

Enact social distancing, cleaning and hygiene practices as recommended by AccelerateSC

End the sale of alcohol at 11:00 PM.

Businesses, event organizers, and others responsible for events that may exceed the occupancy rules may receive clarification allowing the event to proceed if they can satisfactorily demonstrate an ability to comply with federal and state COVID-19 procedures and protocols to the Department of Commerce.

Visit https://accelerate.sc.gov/guidelines for more guidelines.