May 15, 2020

Ohio Governor Announces Additional Dates for Reopening

Alert | Public Law Alert

Governor Mike DeWine has announced dates and protocols for the re-opening of several additional sectors of Ohio’s economy. The Governor is facing intense pressure from members of the Ohio General Assembly who want the entire economy opened immediately with no restrictions.  The following industries now have dates when they will be able to resume operations.  

Day Care Centers will be allowed to reopen on May 31st with reduced staff/child ratios.  Child Care Centers currently operating are doing so on a special pandemic license.  Day care facilities that did not apply for a pandemic license may re-open on May 31st so long as they implement certain safety precautions.  
Reduced Staff/child ratios:

  • Infants – No more than 4 per staff member, no more than 6 in a room;
  • Toddlers – No more than 6 per staff member, no more than 6 in a room;
  • Preschoolers – No more than 9 per staff member, no more than 9 in a room; and
  • School Age – No more than 9 per staff member, no more than 9 in a room.

Children must have their temperature taken at drop off and the child must wash their hands upon entering the classroom.  Any child or staff member with a temperature in excess of 100 degrees must be sent home.  It is being suggested that facilities operate a curbside drop off and pickup if practical and limit those who can enter the facility. Childcare providers must follow strict handwashing protocols which are detailed in Ohio Appendix B of Administrative Code 5101:2-12-13. Children will be required to wash their hands prior to leaving the facility when they are picked up.  

Due to restrictions on the number of children in a room, facilities may erect temporary walls to divide space up so long as the divided space meets established size requirements and the dividers are made of material that can be sanitized and meets requirements set by the Department of Commerce, local building department, State Fire Marshall or local fire safety inspectors.

Due to the high cost associated with these measures the state is going to make $61 million in CARES Act money available to child care centers.  Information on how to obtain this funding will be posted on the Jobs & Family Services website.

Campgrounds may reopen on May 21st. Opening guidance for campgrounds have been posted. They are required to close facilities such as playgrounds, pools or other recreational activities that have not yet been re-opened.  Buildings that are open must abide by social distancing requirements.  Only one family group is allowed per campsite with no campsite allowed to have more than 10 people.  Facilities, including bathhouses will have to be cleaned and sanitized frequently.  Snack Stands and restaurants will have to abide by the enhanced guidelines announced including having appropriate space between guests.  Campground staff will have to be monitored for signs of illness and sent home should they become symptomatic.

Deputy Registrars will reopen on May 26th.  People will be able to renew their drivers license, plates, handicap placards etc. The state is upgrading the queue line for deputy registrars and individuals should expect to have to wait in their cars as deputies will be required to follow social distancing guidelines in their facilities. The General Assembly provided for a 90-day grace period for individuals whose license/plates have expired.  

Horse Racing will reopen on May 22nd.  Spectators are prohibited from attending the races.  This does not give casinos or racinos authority to re-open. The Ohio Racing Commission has adopted Resolution 2020-11A outlining when facilities can re-open and have adopted the “Standardbred & Thoroughbred Protocols for Return to Racing."  This Resolution covers a wide variety of topics including how employees are housed when at the track, requirements for the jockey room and how staff of the facility are to operate.

Gyms & Fitness Centers are permitted reopen on May 26th. The guidance for these facilities has not yet been released.  It is anticipated that the guidance will be out in the next 24 hours.

Sports Leagues for non-contact or limited contact sports will reopen on May 26th.  Guidance has not yet been released.

Pools are able to open on May 26th. This does not include pools found in water parks, amusement parks or other types of entities that have not yet been re-opened.  Further guidance will be forthcoming.

Today the media released a draft document developed by the Ohio Department of Education which was shared with the State Board of Education this week.  Rather than being prescriptive, this document lays out principles and goals districts may use as they plan for the upcoming school year. Nothing in this document has been officially endorsed or approved. It was developed for discussion only however it does provide insight into issues the Department believes are going to be relevant as K-12 education resumes in the fall.

With today’s announcements most of Ohio’s economy has dates as to when it can re-open. Remaining are the large event type facilities such as movie theaters, amusement parks, zoos, sporting venues and playgrounds.  The remaining businesses are places where individuals would come in close to contact to each other or where social distancing is a challenge.   We will provide additional information as it becomes available. 

Roetzel has assembled a team of attorneys who can assist clients as they operationalize restrictions created by public health orders. Feel free to reach out to any of the listed attorney.

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