Gov. Wanda Vázquez

Puerto Rico Gov. Wanda Vázquez Garced.

Puerto Rico Gov. Wanda Vázquez Garced informed this afternoon that the island will remain under the current restrictions with the new Executive Order 2020-060. These measures will be in place in an ongoing effort to curtail the spread of coronavirus (COVID-19).

The new executive order, which comes into effect Saturday, August 1, continues the months-old curfew from 10:00 p.m. to 5:00 a.m., applicable to both residents and visitors.

Moreover, some businesses that had been previously allowed to reopen under the former economic reactivation plan shall remain banned from operating. These include gyms, bars, clubs, "chinchorros," casinos, and others that the governor deemed are prone to cause "agglomerations" of people.

Likewise, common areas in hotels, apartment buildings, and housing complexes - such as pools and gyms - must also be closed.

The dry law also remains into effect from 7:00 p.m. to 5:00 a.m., under which sales of alcoholic beverages are prohibited. The sales of these items are also banned on Sundays. The governor stressed that citizens are not allowed to bring their own liquor to places that are barred from selling alcohol, although she didn't specify how this provision would be enforced.

Meanwhile, beaches must only be used for physical or sports activities, including: surfing, walking, jogging, swimming, among others. People will not be allowed to use these spaces for leisure or to bring seats and "neveritas" (portable mini-fridges). The governor also emphasized that beaches will remain closed on Sundays.

By contrast, supermarkets, drugstores, hardware stores, and restaurants will be allowed to operate on Sundays, although food establishments must only provide carry-out, drive-thru, or delivery services that day.

"The evidence provided by the Department of Health and, as discussed in meetings with the Puerto Rican medical task force, the Puerto Rico Science Trust, the Ponce medical task force, the Statistics Institute, and the Puerto Rico Tourism Company, shows that the transmission community represents the highest percentage of positive cases of COVID-19," the governor said.

The new executive order will be into effect until August 15, nearly a week after the primaries. 

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