The Las Vegas Strip could soon be reopening as Nevada makes tentative plans to allow businesses across the state to open their doors for the first time since the spread of coronavirus first ground things to a halt months ago.
As The Hill reported, Nevada Gov. Steve Sisolak announced that the famed strip of hotels and casinos could reopen starting on June 4 as part of the second wave of reopenings in the state. As the report noted, Sisolak said that he would give another update after this week, but data is trending in the right direction for a reopening.
“If Nevada’s COVID-19 data continues to reflect positive or consistent trends through the Memorial Day Weekend, the Governor will announce a Phase 2 reopening date at the Tuesday press conference, along with business reopening and statewide continuing operation guidelines,” his office said.
The region’s economy is heavily reliant on tourism centered on the Strip, and the city’s mayor had previously floated a plan to allow the city to serve as something of a test case for reopening. That call led to a backlash against Mayor Carolyn Goodman, as many experts believed it was too early at the time to consider allowing casinos and hotels to open again. As The Inquisitr reported, Goodman even faced a recall effort among sharp opposition from some voters in the city.
Now, close to three weeks later, things seem to be moving in a positive direction. As The Hill reported, the Nevada Gaming Control Board has plans to hold a workshop with response measures and any actions that would need to take place for the reopening to go ahead as planned. The state’s resorts must submit safety plans to the board, putting in place ways to slow the spread of the virus and adopting measures like more sanitation stations, limited capacity at gaming tables, temperature checks at the entrance to establishments, and requiring employees and patrons to wear face coverings.
As the report from The Hill added, Nevada has been one of the hardest-hit states in the country, with an unemployment rate that has jumped to 28.2 percent. That is close to double the national average.
At the same time, the number of coronavirus cases in Nevada has been on the downswing. As the Las Vegas Sun reported, a total of 7.7 percent of the 3,657 tests conducted on May 20 came back positive, down from a peak infection rate of 12 percent.