• The San Juan Daily Star

Coamo, San Germán mayors issue EOs restricting business hours

Coamo Mayor Juan Carlos García Padilla

By The Star Staff

The mayors of Coamo and San Germán issued executive orders Thursday restricting the operations of businesses in an effort to curb the spread of COVID-19 as the new corornavirus variant omicron spreads rapidly.

Other municipalities at press time were expected to follow suit.

Coamo Mayor Juan Carlos García Padilla issued Executive Order No. 38, which restricts business from operating between the hours of 10 p.m. and 5 a.m., from Friday to Sunday, Jan. 2, 2022 as part of prevention measures related to the excessive increase in active cases of COVID-19 in that town.

García Padilla said the municipality is canceling and prohibiting any public or private activity in public facilities such as town squares, coliseums, community centers, courts, parks and streets in order to avoid crowds and prevent the spread of infections. Vaccination and testing activities are the only ones authorized within town limits.

“Because of the increase of more than 650 active cases as of December 29, 2021, I am restricting hours of operations to from 5 a.m. to 10 p.m. on the aforementioned days; that includes restaurants, bars, pubs, coffee shops, sports bars, food trucks, activity centers and any other place that serves drinks or prepared meals,” the Coamo mayor said. “We are going through, like the whole country, a health crisis and we have to be careful to control the rebound that affects thousands on the island.”

García Padilla clarified that at 10 p.m. businesses will not be able to have customers waiting for service and that only the staff will remain, after that time, for cleaning work. At 11 p.m. the premises must be completely closed. Gas stations that sell other products may not sell alcoholic beverages or food for use on their premises between 10 p.m. and 5 a.m.

“The Public Order Code establishes a penalty of $500 for violation of the restrictions,” García Padilla said. “People also risk having their municipal licenses revoked. The installation of sound systems in public places, karaoke bars, as well as the gathering of people outside commercial premises is prohibited. We are not authorizing the closure of streets, placement of tables, chairs, inflatables or any other element that encourages crowding.”

San Germán Mayor Virgilio Olivera Olivera, meanwhile, announced the content of Executive Order No. 05 (Series 2021-2022), which will be in effect in that municipality until Sunday, Jan. 9.

“All businesses in San Germán are ordered to terminate the sale of alcoholic beverages at 10 p.m. and close them at 11 p.m.,” he said. “The municipal police, along with the state police, will be ensuring compliance with this” executive order.”

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