HONOLULU — Gov. David Ige Monday set additional vaccination benchmarks for gatherings and restaurants.
“As Hawai‘i’s public-health outcomes improve and our economic situation appears to be stabilizing, I am ending several of the emergency provisions that have been in place for over a year,” said Ige.
“By August, I hope the public-health situation will allow me to do the same for others. We can get there if people become informed about their safe and effective vaccination options and choose to get their injections. Remember, the state pushed back the Aug. 15 rollout of the Safe Travels program to Oct. 15. While challenging at the time, it was necessary.”
When the state achieves a 60% vaccination rate:
• Social gatherings of up to 25 people will be allowed indoors, and 75 outdoors;
• Restaurants: Up to 75% capacity (with maximum groups size of 25 indoors and 75 outdoors).
Statewide vaccination goals will not affect the counties’ COVID-19 policies regarding structured events, weddings, etc. This applies only to travel, social gatherings and restaurants.
When the state achieves a 70% vaccination rate:
• All restrictions terminate. Social gatherings are no longer restricted, and restaurants will continue to be regulated in the normal course by the state Department of Health, which may establish new, permanent rules in light of the pandemic.
All of this is subject to continued monitoring by the DOH for the impact of variants on COVID-19 case numbers, health-care capacity, etc. The state and counties will make appropriate adjustments as needed.
Inter-island Safe Travels program to end
Ige also signed a 21st emergency proclamation related to COVID-19, which officially brings the inter-county Safe Travels program to an end at 11:59 p.m. on June 14. As of June 15, no inter-county testing or quarantine requirements will be in effect, and all Safe Travels program and other restrictions will end for inter-county travel.
“If current trends hold, I expect both the eviction moratorium and the driver’s-licensing provisions to expire in August. We’ve learned a lot about acting with care, and I am hopeful these lessons will carry us forward,” said Ige.
Other provisions of the 21st emergency proclamation:
• Reflects the Legislature’s enactment of Senate Bill 540 and the possibility that the counties and Judiciary will designate emergency period infractions. SB540 allows for lesser emergency-period penalties to be adopted by the governor or a mayor; As of Monday, Ige had not signed SB540. He has until June 21 to decide whether he will veto the bill and until July 6 to veto, sign the measure or allow it to become law without his signature;
• Clarifies that all persons seeking a vaccination exception to the travel self-quarantine must provide consent and authorization to allow the DOH and providers to use and access vaccination information as expressly allowed in the Safe Travels program;
• Restores the Hawai‘i public-procurement code, including the purchase of health and human services;
• Restores licensing requirements for occupational and physical therapy;
• Restores administrative support for child support enforcement.
• Includes rules for the Child Care Grant Program.
While the 21st emergency proclamation extends the eviction moratorium for those unable to pay rent, renters and landlords are encouraged to seek and accept the rental-assistance relief being distributed in each county.
The proclamation also allows for the extension of expirations for driver’s licenses, state IDs and instructional permits that expired during the emergency period. This extension allows county driver’s licensing centers to recover from the ongoing effects of the pandemic on availability of services.
The 21st emergency proclamation is effective now and will expire on Aug. 6.