SANTA FE (KSMX)- New Mexico state health officials on Monday announced 62 additional positive tests for COVID-19 bring the state to a total of 686 positive tests.
Because of the surge of positive testing, Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham on Monday extended her public health emergency order and announced the extension of related public health orders to encourage social distancing and preserve safety equipment for health care workers.
The order is effective at 8 a.m., April 7.
As in the original public health order, New Mexicans are instructed to stay at home except for emergency or essential outings, and non-essential businesses that had been ordered to close in-person operations must remain closed.
The amended order includes a new requirement that all retail operations that are considered essential businesses – including grocery stores – shall limit occupancy in their retail spaces. The maximum number of customers in the retail space must be equal to 20 percent or less of the maximum occupancy of the retail space, as determined by the relevant fire marshal or fire department.
Hotels, motels, RV parks, and other places of lodging shall not operate at more than 25 percent of maximum occupancy, per the amended order which was reduced from 50 percent.
Additional entities that are deemed non-essential as part of the amended order and must cease in-person operations are automobile dealerships, payday lenders and liquor stores.
The extension also applies to a series of public health orders issued by the Department of Health Secretary Kathy Kunkel because their duration was linked to the executive order. Those orders include:
- Limiting nursing home visitation
- Limiting mass gatherings
- Closing casinos, horse-racing facilities and restaurants and bars (except for pickup and delivery) and restricting hotel and motel operations
- Closing all non-essential businesses and nonprofits
- Prohibiting non-essential health care services to conserve personal protective equipment for COVID-19 workers
- Regulating the sale and distribution of personal protective equipment due to COVID-19 related shortages