Mayor Anticipates Approval for Loosened Restrictions on Maui
October 12, 2021, 8:10 PM HST
* Updated October 14, 5:09 AM
While the mayor said he has obtained a verbal okay from Governor David Ige, he’s holding back on calling loosened restrictions official until the Governor puts his signature on paper.
In an uncharacteristic move, Maui Mayor Michael Victorino detailed proposed changes to the County’s Emergency COVID-19 Rules and Orders, that if approved, are expected to take effect at 12:01 a.m. on Sunday, Oct. 17, 2021.
In past briefings, the Mayor has refrained from delving too far into details of pending requests to avoid public confusion.
The newly proposed changes include:
- Increasing social gatherings for indoors to 10 and outdoors to 25. (This applies to gatherings at home).
- Extending hours for bars and restaurants from 10 p.m. to midnight.
- Allowing 10 guests per table, instead of five at restaurants.
- Allowing unvaccinated patrons who have received a negative COVID-19 test 48 hours prior, to dine indoors.
“Many of you know that I’ve allowed spectators for indoor and outdoor sports events that are not [under] DOE jurisdiction,” said Mayor Victorino. Details regarding specific numbers are forthcoming, but the Mayor said, “You’ve seen what Honolulu has done. We’re basically following their lead in that respect.”
Maui’s Safer Outside rules went into effect on Sept. 15, following a spike in Delta variant cases across the state. It included limited hours and reduced capacity at select businesses. An earlier request to ease restrictions was denied on Oct. 1, as state health officials at the time said that it was “still too soon to let our guard down.”
“I want to give credit to all of the businesses and the community and our residents throughout Maui County for making this possible,” said Mayor Victorino. “You have all done a fantastic job in bringing down the numbers, and I’m very proud of you.”
Maui had just three new COVID-19 cases total on Tuesday including: one on Maui (+1 probable); and one on Moloka‘i. But Mayor Victorino reminded the public that the numbers are from the weekend, saying, “We’re still not out of the woods yet.”
“I’m beginning to feel a lot more optimistic. I’d like to say it in this way–I’m feeling a lot like Christmas is around the corner,” he said.
Also during Tuesday’s press briefing, the mayor outlined plans for the upcoming Halloween holiday.