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County clarifies what businesses, activities allowed under rules

Some can continue with limitations, others only in emergencies

The County of Maui has released an extensive list of activities and businesses allowed to operate under the emergency rules that went into effect Wednesday.

The rules, which mandated that people stay at home and work from home and shuttered many nonessential operations to protect against coronavirus spread, have left some business owners wondering what exactly they’ll be allowed to do in the coming weeks.

On its website Saturday, the county published “supplemental guidance” listing activities, businesses and industries, and whether they are permitted.

Some businesses are being allowed to operate only for emergency reasons. Automobile sales, for example, are not allowed, unless in critical situations, such as the replacement of a totaled vehicle or the purchase of a government vehicle. Spas and massage services are not allowed unless ordered by a physician — then they’re exempt as health care. Retail liquor stores must be closed unless they sell food or other conveniences.

Other businesses can continue, but with limitations. Fabric stores are allowed provided they are supplying or manufacturing health care-related items such as gowns or masks. Florists and flower farms can operate if delivering for funeral services and wholesale; direct public sales are not allowed. Liquor production can go on, but without tastings or bar operations, and workers must follow social distancing measures. Real estate sales can continue, but open houses are prohibited and sales must be by appointment only and for critical situations, such as financial difficulty on the part of the seller or legal requirements.

Basic services are allowed, such as mail delivery, public transportation, laundromats, health care facilities, financial institutions and property management. Stores and activities providing food and essentials, including farmers’ markets, ranches and fishing operations, are permitted. Commercial fishing, however, is prohibited from doing tours or charters, and individual fishing is limited to immediate household members only.

Businesses that are still operating are urged to follow social distancing rules and limit chances of exposure. For example, funeral services are permitted, including mortuary, cremation, burial or cemetery-related services, though people must comply with social distancing.

Hotels, motels and transient accommodations can remain open, including services or employees necessary to maintain safety, sanitation and essential operations. However, restaurants must be takeout, delivery or room service only.

Questions also have surfaced recently over whether beaches, the ocean and outdoor activities are allowed.

The supplemental guidance clarifies guidelines to say that beaches, which are not county and state parks, are “only for engaging in essential activities,” such as “fishing, swimming, surfing, stand-up paddling alone or with immediate household members only. No gatherings.”

It does not say whether they are open or closed, however.

County and state beach parks are closed, though, and Maui Police Department has said not to enter them.

Outdoor physical activities are allowed alone, or with members of one’s immediate household only. No group activities or sports are permitted, according to the document.

Leisurely driving and sightseeing is not allowed.

“The guidance provides further clarification for various activities, businesses and industries on whether they are permitted under the rules,” county spokesman Chris Sugidono said in a news release Saturday. “Please keep in mind that this guidance may be updated in response to this evolving emergency.”

The emergency rules are in effect through April 30.

To view the supplemental guidance, visit mauicounty.gov and click on “Supplemental Guidance – Public Health Emergency Rules.”

For questions, call the Mayor’s Office Call Center at 270-7855.

* Kehaulani Cerizo can be reached at kcerizo@mauinews.com. Colleen Uechi can be reached at cuechi@mauinews.com.

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