Kemp lifts many COVID-19 rules on Georgia businesses

Georgia News

Georgia Gov. Brian Kemp greets supporters after he speaks during a news conference at the State Capitol on Saturday, April 3, 2021, in Atlanta, about Major League Baseball’s decision to pull the 2021 All-Star Game from Atlanta over the league’s objection to a new Georgia voting law. (AP Photo/Brynn Anderson)

ATLANTA (AP) — Georgia Gov. Brian Kemp is removing many remaining requirements for social distancing and masked employees from businesses.

The Republican governor says the state’s efforts to control COVID-19 have been successful even as its vaccination rate lags and federal officials continue to warn that the infection rates remain relatively high.

Georgia Democrats say now is not the time for the governor to let the guard down.

“Brian Kemp has failed Georgia at every stage in this pandemic, and now he’s ending even the most bare-bones restrictions keeping Georgians safe,” said Maggie Chambers, of the Democratic Party of Georgia.

Kemp had imposed mask mandates on many businesses. Except for in the health care sector, he lifted those mandates on Friday.

Among other changes, restaurants are no longer required to have any distance between tables. Kemp says social distancing is now only “strongly encouraged,” not required.

Movie theaters are no longer required to enforce any seating distance between unrelated customers.

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