SAN LUIS VALLEY — A new public health order is expected from the Governor’s office on Friday, April 16, that will shift more of the decisions regarding COVID-19 response and prevention from the state to the local level. Statewide mandatory use of the COVID-19 Dial is expected to end, although it can still be used as guidance.
One thing that will not change is the current statewide mask order that was modified on April 3 and extended for at least another 30 days, public health officials reiterated.
In counties with one-week COVID-19 incidence rates in excess of 35/100,000 — currently Alamosa, Conejos, Rio Grande, and Saguache counties — masks must also be worn in public indoor settings where 10 or more unvaccinated individuals or individuals of unknown vaccination status are present. This should be considered a minimum standard.
Public health authorities strongly encourage continued use of masks and other precautions until a higher percentage of our population is fully vaccinated. One thing to note, however, is that private business owners have the right to require masks no matter what. Officials ask that people be respectful when frequenting places of business regarding their requirements.
In all counties, masks are still required in schools, including extracurricular activities, childcare centers, indoor childrens’ camps, public-facing government facilities, healthcare settings, personal care services such as hair salons, body art,nail salons, congregate care facilities, prisons, and jails.
As of Thursday, April 15, there were currently 89 known active cases of COVID-19 in the San Luis Valley. Incidence rates are also noted below for the counties in excess of 35/100,000.