Arizona to help restaurants expand outdoor dining with another $1M

Jan 26, 2021, 10:45 AM
(AP Photo/Marcio Jose Sanchez)...
(AP Photo/Marcio Jose Sanchez)
(AP Photo/Marcio Jose Sanchez)

PHOENIX – Arizona added $1 million Tuesday to a state program helping restaurants with coronavirus safety measures.

Restaurants are to use the funding to augment outdoor seating, designed to lessen the spread of COVID-19. The program has been assigned $4 million since its December inception.

“Today’s funding will help restaurants purchase items like outdoor furniture and barriers so they can safely serve patrons,” Gov. Doug Ducey said in a press release.

“I’m grateful to the businesses across Arizona working to protect our communities and keep our economy moving forward,” he added.

The assistance program was established when Ducey signed an executive order that allowed dining past the usual patio boundaries.

The initial $1 million allocation was followed by $2 million earlier this month.

Funding has been provided to nearly all eligible businesses that have been approved for an extension of premises, the governor’s office said.

To be eligible, applicants must: comply with all COVID-19 related Executive Orders; demonstrate a new extension of premises that has been approved by the local governing body and the Arizona Department of Liquor, if applicable; plan to extend the premises for a minimum of three months; have fewer than 50 employees; be Arizona-owned and-operated, and more.

Arizona’s documented COVID-19 totals moved to 732,643 infections and 12,448 fatalities Tuesday, according to the Arizona Department of Health Services’ dashboard.

As of Monday’s update from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control, Arizona continued to lead the nation in average cases and deaths per capita over the last seven days.

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