When Tulare County received the OK from the state to move ahead to “Stage 2.5” of the state's plan for reopening businesses, it paved the way for dine-in restaurants to offer dine-in services.

Restaurants in Tulare County who submit a plan for reopening to offer dine-in services can fill out the plan here: https://covid19.tularecounty.ca.gov/business-and-financial-resources/reopening-your-business/

The link is on the Tulare County Health and Human Services COVID-19 website under business resources.

Once the restaurant submits its plan for reopening, it's certifying it will comply with state guidelines, said county spokesperson Carrie Monteiro. That then gives the restaurant the green light to reopen to offer dine-in service. Monteiro said as of Friday morning about 20 restaurants in the county had submitted their plan.

Restaurants will still have to abide by social distancing guidelines of keeping people six feet apart. The guidelines also allow restaurants to open at 50 percent capacity.

Originally, areas such as restaurant dine-in service, hair salons and barber shops were in Stage 3 of the state's reopening plan. But in an effort to more quickly reopen the state's economy, areas such as restaurant dine-in service, hair salons and barber shops have been placed in Stage 2.5 and have all been given the green light to open in Tulare County.

A number of local restaurants have already begun to offer dine-in service based on the 3-2 vote by the Tulare County Board of Supervisors to move into Stage 3.

Governor Gavin Newsom plans to announced guidelines next week that will allow some counties to move into Phase 3, which would include how such places as movie theaters could begin to open.

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