Wayne business owners respond to new restrictions

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Gov. Pete Ricketts announced last Friday they will be moving from Phase 4 to what's being called Phase 3.1.

WAYNE, Neb (KCAU) –Wednesday, Nebraska businesses will be taking a step back in their opening up plan.

Gov. Pete Ricketts announced last Friday they will be moving from Phase 4 to what’s being called Phase 3.1.

“It is what it is, the idea is to get through this pandemic the best that we can,” said Bill Melena.

Melena is the owner of the White Dog Pub in Wayne, Nebraska. He said while this year has been hard, he will continue to follow new guidelines set forth.

“We will just follow their rules and, hopefully, that will get us towards an end in sight a little bit faster where we can be a little bit more opened up, and free with walking around in here, and get people more comfortable to come back out in the community and enjoy themselves,” said Melena.

Ricketts’ 3.1 phase will require patrons at bars and restaurants to be seated unless they are using the restrooms or playing games with a maximum of eight people per party.

The Table Coffee Shop manager Lisa Lenihan says she does not foresee this being an issue.

“It’s just part of the plan, you know. We are going to follow the rules, but I don’t think that we will be affected much, since most of our people are coming and going anyways, so it works for us,” said Lisa Lenihan.

Lenihan says with the arrival of students to Wayne, businesses has picked up, helping with the financial losses of closing earlier this year.

“Since the beginning, we have been taking precautions and nothing has really changed other than wearing masks and 50 percent capacity, but we have still been able to make that work and students love to be in this atmosphere of studying,” said Taylor Ostrom, a student at Wayne.

With a continued increase in cases, some business owners say they hope more precautions aren’t necessary.

“We always worry with backtracking a little bit, I mean, I definitely don’t want to close the salon down again, if it’s necessary then we will do that, but I feel like right now we are doing everything to stay safe,” said Tamya Gamble, the owner of Hair Envy Salon.

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