Contributed Photo: Takeout parking only signs were dropped off Friday morning in front of El Coronado restaurant in Downtown Safford.
Governor Doug Ducey’s executive order closes bars, allows restaurants to offer only dine-out options
By Jon Johnson
SAFFORD – In the wake of yesterday’s announcement from Governor Doug Ducey closing bars and limiting restaurants to takeout orders, the city of Safford is delivering signs to local restaurants dedicating street parking places for takeout orders only.
Safford City Manager Horatio Skeete and city employees helped deliver a number of signs to local restaurants Friday morning. Skeete said the quick action by the city was prompted to assist the businesses in these trying times.
“This is one of the ideas generated by meeting with local businesses and we felt it was something that needed to be done quickly,” Skeete said. “Hopefully, this will give them a chance to stay above water.”
Skeete said the city has about 30 more signs to deliver for lunch and dinner spots and that the city is concentrating on placing the signs at restaurants that do not offer a drive-through option. Those restaurants are now utilizing the signs to offer parking for its curbside service during the COVID-19 epidemic.
Click here to see a listing of local restaurants and links to their websites or Facebook pages.
Ducey’s order is effective by 5 p.m., Friday for any county with a positive novel coronavirus COVID-19 test and also closes movie theaters and gyms. Eight counties currently have positive cases; Maricopa – 34, Pinal – 10, Pima – eight, Navajo – three (with 11 new presumptive cases on the Navajo Reservation), Coconino – two, Yavapai- one, Santa Cruz – one, and Graham County with its lone case, so far. Graham County is waiting for test results on at least five tests and the Graham County Department of Health and Human Services is providing a mobile clinic testing facility at Pima Junior High School on Friday from 9 a.m. – 3 p.m.
Ducey’s order also calls on the National Guard to help restock shelves at grocery stores and food banks, halts all elective surgeries to free up medical services, delays expiration dates on driver’s licenses, and authorizes restaurants to deliver alcoholic beverages with food while allowing manufacturers, wholesalers, and retailers to buy back unopened products from both restaurants and bars. Cafeterias at nursing homes, hospitals and like businesses are exempt from the order.