On Friday, Feb. 12, indoor dining returns to Portland before most schools are expected to begin only limited reopenings.
The change comes as Multnomah County and surrounding counties in the metro region had fewer than 200 new COVID-19 cases per 100,000 people in the previous two weeks. Restaurants can host 25% of their usual capacity (and a maximum of 50 people).
"Reopening schools is not a light switch that can be turned off and on at a moment's notice, but the local processes to return students to classrooms are happening right now and have been for several weeks," says Charles Boyle, spokesman for Gov. Kate Brown.
Health officials in the Portland region urged people to continue to practice caution: "The metro region is still in the high-risk category, which means the virus is still circulating widely in our communities," said Washington County health officer Dr. Christina Baumann in a statement. "Until more people are vaccinated, we must continue to practice safety measures to protect our most vulnerable residents."
Gyms and entertainment venues can begin to open as well. Nursing homes may allow visitors.