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Maricopa County reaches 'moderate' benchmark to reopen businesses

Some bars, indoor gyms and fitness clubs or centers, indoor movie theaters and water parks in Maricopa County can now reopen their doors.

PHOENIX — Maricopa County was among the counties in Arizona that met the benchmarks Thursday to reopen businesses that were once ordered to close their doors in an effort to slow the spread of the coronavirus. 

The business reopening status for Maricopa County was "moderate," meaning there were two consecutive weeks of 10 to 100 cases per every 100,000 people, a percent positivity between 5% and 10% and hospital visits for COVID-like illnesses in the region between 5% and 10%.

Gov. Doug Ducey issued an executive order on June 29 that ordered bars with specific licenses, indoor gyms and fitness clubs or centers, indoor movie theaters and water parks and tubing operators to close down. 

In the moderate setting, gyms must operate at 25% occupancy and need to implement the state health department's mitigation requirements.

Movie theaters, water parks and tubing can operate at 50% occupancy and need to implement the state health department's mitigation requirements. 

Bars and nightclubs that have a food establishment permit can operate at 50% occupancy but only if they are converted to "restaurant service" and outdoor dining is encouraged. 

Bars and nightclubs that do not have a food establishment permit cannot reopen in the moderate setting.

You can find the COVID-19 guidance for businesses here.

The Arizona Department of Health Services have previously allowed these types of businesses to reopen as long as they applied to do so and could prove that they were following COVID-19 guidelines to keep the public safe.

RELATED: As Arizona businesses prepare to reopen, what is the state doing to prevent a virus resurgence?

Here are the Arizona counties and their reopening status as of Thursday: 

  • Apache: Moderate
  • Cochise: Moderate
  • Coconino: Moderate
  • Gila: Substantial
  • Graham: Substantial
  • Greenlee: Minimal
  • La Paz: Moderate
  • Maricopa: Moderate
  • Mohave: Substantial
  • Navajo: Moderate
  • Pima: Moderate
  • Pinal: Substantial
  • Santa Cruz: Substantial
  • Yavapai: Moderate
  • Yuma: Substantial

Anyone who believes a business is not following the COVID-19 guidelines can report it to state health officials by submitting a complaint online or calling the COVID-19 Compliance Hotline at 1-844-410-2157.

At least 103 Arizona businesses were approved for reopening as of 5 p.m. Monday.

The Arizona Department of Health Services said Arizonans should take the following precautions to protect themselves from COVID-19:  

  • Wash your hands with soap and water or an alcohol-based hand sanitizer that contains at least 60% alcohol
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth with unwashed hands
  • Avoid close contact with others with others who are sick
  • Stay home when you're sick 
  • Cover your cough or sneeze
  • Wear masks in public 
  • Clean and disinfect frequently used surfaces
  • Stay at least six feet from others while in public