Arizona Gyms, Pools To Open As Gov. Ducey Continues To Relax Restrictions

By Mark Brodie, Steve Goldstein, Katherine Davis-Young
Published: Tuesday, May 12, 2020 - 6:11pm
Updated: Wednesday, May 13, 2020 - 11:38am

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Gov. Doug Ducey
Arizona Republic/Pool
Gov. Doug Ducey speaks at a press conference about updates to COVID-19 restrictions in Arizona at the Arizona Commerce Authority conference center in Phoenix on May 12, 2020.

Gov. Doug Ducey will allow Arizona to continue reopening. Pools and gyms can open May 13, and professional sports can resume without fans May 16. But the governor is not expecting a return to normal soon.

The governor said he’s basing his decisions on a downward trajectory of cases, the state’s ability to treat patients and the availability of testing. He said the reopening process will be gradual. He’s still encouraging Arizonans to work from home when possible and minimize travel, saying this is not the end of social distancing.

“[Social distancing] is what has allowed us to get many of the victories that we’ve been able to claim in making different and better decisions to bring back our economy and it’s going to continue to be a focus," Ducey said. 

Arizona still lags behind most other states when it comes to testing per capita. Ducey said the state plans to increase testing with a focus on vulnerable populations in long-term care facilities and correctional facilities.

Some Arizonans certainly have taken advantage of the reopening of some businesses and restaurants, including C.A.S.A. Tempe. The Arizona Republic’s Patrick Breen photographed the packed bar and restaurant on Monday, the first day dine-in services were allowed to resume.

Ducey was specifically asked about the photo and how social distancing measures were being enforced, leading to a contentious exchange with reporters.

Arizona Capitol Media's Howard Fischer was among the reporters who would’ve liked an answer to that question. He joined The Show to discuss the governor's comments.

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