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The Kentucky Association of Counties

Covid-19 Newsroom

Gov. Beshear announces details about a phased plan to reopen the economy

Phase 1 begins May 11.

This week, Gov. Beshear announced Healthy at Work, a phased plan for reopening businesses in Kentucky. The plan includes a tentative schedule for opening certain industries on May 11, May 18, May 25 and beyond. The phased strategy is built on a number of assumptions, including that there isn’t a spike in COVID-19 cases and that businesses can follow a number of public health guidelines.

“We’ve got to do this right. I believe we can do this right,” Gov. Beshear said. “When we phase back in to work, remember, you don’t need an in-person meeting. Use the telephone. And now that we are starting to open up health care, see your doctor if you need to.”

The tentative plan includes the following dates:

May 11 – Manufacturing, construction, vehicle and vessel dealerships, professional services (at 50% of pre-outbreak capacity), horse racing (without spectators), pet grooming and boarding

May 20 – Retail, houses of worship

May 25 – Social gatherings of no more than 10 people, barbers, salons, cosmetology businesses and similar services

Gov. Beshear also explained that for May 20, houses of worship would be allowed in-person services at a reduced capacity and that everything is contingent on being able to do social distancing, cleaning, sanitation and other accommodations.

“A crowd is still going to be a dangerous thing until we are further along in defeating this virus,” Gov. Beshear said. “It’s something we need to continue to avoid.”

The Governor said that some industries won’t be able to reopen under phase one, including restaurants, gyms, movie theaters, campgrounds, youth sports, summer camps, day cares (except for essential health care workers) and public pools.

“Another that we want to be in Phase 2 is gyms. Later, but not in Phase 1: movie theaters, campgrounds and youth sports. We hope in this summer, and we don’t know if it will be in June or perhaps early July, we hope that we will be able to do some youth sports,” the Governor said.

The 10 rules to reopening a business under the Healthy at Work plan are:

  • Continue telework where possible
  • Phased return to work
  • Onsite temperature/health checks
  • Universal masks and other necessary PPE
  • Close common areas
  • Enforce social distancing
  • Limit face-to-face meetings
  • Sanitizer/hand wash stations
  • Special accommodations
  • Testing plan

Industry groups and trade associations are encouraged to communicate with and gather input from their membership to develop and submit reopen proposals on behalf of their members. Individual businesses may submit via the online reopen form. All proposals will be evaluated according to White House guidelines and other public health criteria.

Learn more here: