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Georgia Gov. Kemp Signs Executive Order to Lift Many of State’s Pandemic Restrictions

ATLANTA — With three COVID-19 vaccines being administered, states all across the country are lessening their pandemic restrictions, including Georgia. Georgia Gov. Brian Kemp signed an executive order last Friday to lift many of the state’s last remaining pandemic restrictions, effective immediately through the month of May.

The order occupancy limitations for restaurants that were in place to limit the exposure of contagions, and it also ends protocols for close-contact businesses such as gyms, movie theaters and barbershops.

The executive order strongly encourages patrons to continue to practice social distancing and wearing masks in public establishments, and for shops and restaurants to utilize contactless operations where appropriate.

The executive order, which is 28 pages long, also ends mask requirements for restaurant workers, lessens restrictions for live performance events and allows sports organizations such as the Atlanta Braves and Atlanta United to increase occupancy.

Georgia joins a group of other states with lessening restrictions, including Texas who ended most of its restrictions in March 2021. According to The Atlanta Journal-Constitution, governors in Alabama, Arizona, Mississippi, Connecticut and West Virginia have also decreased their COVID-19 restrictions. Additionally, Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis signed an executive order on Monday, May 3 that suspends all of the state’s pandemic restrictions. However, the order still allows private businesses to require face masks for its workers and customers and to enforce social distancing.

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