Dear friends and neighbors:

This has been a very important week for businesses and our larger community. I’ve been pushing for weeks for our state to accelerate the reopening of our restaurants, fitness centers and other businesses. Well, those efforts are paying off in the form of new metrics announced Thursday that will allow such facilities to reopen Monday at 25 percent of capacity.

While there is still a lot of work to do before we can get back to normal, this is a start. This shift in policy provides a small but critical lifeline that will enable our local businesses to keep their doors open in the weeks and months to come. I hope my efforts to encourage reopening restaurants and gyms safely will mean we actually have businesses to return to when this is all over.

From here, I’ll continue to push to improve the metrics of the state’s shutdown guidelines to more accurately reflect reality in our local communities, as we achieved this week. I’ve long felt that having to choose between public health and reopening our businesses has been a false choice; the metrics on reopening, however well-intended, do not account for our unique local circumstances. I am convinced that we can reopen safely and sensibly, and I won’t be satisfied until our communities are fully functioning for everyone’s benefit.

Best regards,