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Yukon restaurants, bars can remain open

Despite concerns voiced by the city’s mayor, Yukon restaurants and bars will be able to continue serving their customers inside their buildings.
During a work session Monday, the city council reworked an earlier emergency proclamation related to the COVID-19 virus.
As of Tuesday, four positive cases of coronavirus have been confirmed in Canadian County.
However, Mayor Michael McEachern said he believes the number is higher, but fewer tests are being conducted in the county.
He pointed to nearby Oklahoma County, which had 41 cases as of Tuesday, and Cleveland County with 22 confirmed cases.
That is why McEachern said he is concerned about allowing businesses such as barber shops, nail salons and hair salons to remain open.
However, some other members of the council were concerned that by forcing those businesses to close, many might never reopen.
In addition, the original proclamation proposed Monday would have forced local bars to close, while allowing restaurants to continue serving customers in their dining rooms.
City Council member Shelli Selby said that seems unfair.
Selby said she prefers to allow the local bars to remain open, but to operate under the same guidance required of restaurants.
That includes limiting the number of people at a table to six and also separating tables by at least six feet.
The number of customers inside the establishment also would be limited.
“We’re shutting down two bars,” Selby said.
Nathan Cross, who is the manager of Grady’s 66 Pub, had told Selby that his business already is limiting the number of customers, plus it is working hard to make sure the building is thoroughly disinfected.
Selby also pointed out there were no restrictions on grocery stores.
Restaurants and bars are not a necessity, said McEachern. However, grocery stores are, in his opinion.
“It bothers me that we want to be less restrictive,” the mayor said. “I wouldn’t want anyone to die on my watch.”
The other issue that bothered some council members was a proposal that closes places like hair and nail salons and barber shops.
After significant discussion, the council agreed to allow the businesses to remain open with significant restrictions.
Those restrictions include making every other chair unavailable.
The restrictions were to go into effect at 11:59 p.m. Tuesday and initially would remain in place until April 13.
Violations of the proclamation, which was expected to be incorporated into a resolution on Tuesday, could result in a $700 fine and a misdemeanor charge.

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