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Lt. Gov. pushing colleagues to lift all outdoor COVID restrictions by Nov. 1

Published: Oct. 14, 2021 at 3:17 PM HST|Updated: Oct. 14, 2021 at 4:26 PM HST
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HONOLULU (HawaiiNewsNow) - As Hawaii’s COVID numbers continue on a steep decline, the Lt. Governor says he’s calling on state and county leaders to drop more restrictions.

“We’re moving into the next phase of the pandemic. A phase where we should be able to lift restrictions on outdoor activities completely,” said Josh Green. “That’s hopefully where they’ll head by November 1. It makes sense.”

That means no limits on how many people can gather at events outside.

Green says by the beginning of next month he expects Hawaii’s COVID numbers to be where they were prior to the Delta surge.

“We’re close. Every two weeks we’ve been dropping by 50% - our case counts,” he said. " And if we continue at this pace, which we will at this point, our positivity rate will be probably under 1.5% in a couple weeks. Our case counts will be in the double digits again and so will the hospitalizations.”

Honolulu’s Mayor says he’s optimistic outdoor restrictions will be loosened soon -- but didn’t offer a timeline.

“We’re telling people to plan for big things,” said Rick Blangiardi.

Meanwhile, he did say he’d been apart of discussions to bring major sporting events back to the state.

“We met with ESPN recently. We told them they should go on with the Hawaii Bowl and the basketball tournament,” Blangiardi said.

As for when changes could be made to some indoor restrictions Green says if the numbers keep trending down he’d like it to happen two weeks after outdoor restrictions are dropped.

While people will likely still be encouraged to wear masks inside he says, “Having limitations on gatherings once most people are vaccinated won’t do much.”

Friday marks the one year since the state enacted its Safe Travels program. Green says at this point there are no plans to change it.

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