WATERTOWN — Scott A. Gray thinks restaurants will finally be able to open up their dining rooms by the end of the week.
Mr. Gray, chairman of the Jefferson County Legislature, on Monday predicted that restaurants and other businesses will be able to start operating when the state gives the green light for Phase III of reopening.
“We should be on schedule,” he said, adding that the north country is following state requirements for the state’s coronavirus metrics.
“I see nothing to slow us down,” he said. “Everything is good.”
Last week, the governor’s office allowed restaurants to set up tables to have outdoor seating.
The state has indicated that Phase III doesn’t have to wait the 14 days that were required between Phase I and Phase II, so the developments can happen any time.
Restaurant owners have been waiting for the day that they can fully operate after three months of being impacted by the shutdown of the economy because of the virus.
It could be as early as Monday night or Tuesday that state guidances will be released that will let restaurants know what they will have to do to make it safe for their customers under social distancing rules.
The guidelines were being finalized, he said Monday night.
Mr. Gray also fully expects that the nonessential employees of the city of Watertown, the county, villages and towns can return to work in their offices, starting Monday.
However, he doesn’t know whether that means public meetings can be held by municipalities.