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Iowa governor loosening business restrictions starting May 1 in 77 counties, Woodbury County not included

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Counties to maintain mitigation efforts
Iowa counties to maintain mitigation efforts until at least May 15.


JOHNSTON, Iowa (KTIV) -- Iowa Gov. Kim Reynolds says the state will start taking a "targeted approach" to loosening restrictions across the state. But for now, Woodbury County will not be a part of this approach.

During her news conference Monday, Reynolds said starting May 1 she would be lifting certain restrictions in counties that are seeing stabilization and downward trends with COVID-19.

On Friday restaurants, fitness centers and retail stores in 77 of Iowa's 99 counties can reopen at 50% of their normal operating capacity. Reynolds added that malls may reopen at 50% capacity as well, but play areas and food court dining will remain closed.

Woodbury County is the only western Iowa county where this will not happen. For Woodbury County and the other 21 counties, current mitigation measures will remain in place until at least May 15.

The governor says social and recreational sporting events will continue to be limited to 10 people. But limits involving spiritual and religious gatherings will be lifted.

Reynolds said businesses and churches approved for reopening must adhere to social distancing measures and guidelines from the Iowa Department of Public Health.

Reynolds has also allowed libraries to open as well, so long as they operate at 50% of their capacity. Speedways and race tracks will also be able to reopen so long as they do not permit any spectators to attend in person.

All other closures will be extended for the entire state through May 15. This includes the following:

  • Bars are to remain closed, but can still offer carry-out, drive-thru or delivery services.
  • All theaters are to remain closed.
  • Casinos or any other facility conducting pari-mutuel wagering or gaming operations are to remain closed.
  • Social and Fraternal clubs are to remain closed.
  • All bingo halls, bowling alleys, pool halls, arcades and amusement parks shall remain closed.
  • Museums, aquariums and zoos are to remain closed.
  • Playgrounds, campgrounds and swimming pools are to remain closed.
  • Salons, medical spas, tattoo establishments, barbershops, tanning facilities and massage therapy establishments will remain closed.

While some restrictions are being lifted in parts of Iowa, Reynolds is still urging older Iowans or anyone with severe health conditions to continue to remain at home.

The 22 counties that will maintain mitigation efforts are:

  • Woodbury County
  • Allamakee County
  • Benton County
  • Black Hawk County
  • Bremer County
  • Dallas County
  • Des Moines County
  • Dubuque County
  • Fayette County
  • Henry County
  • Iowa County
  • Jasper County
  • Johnson County
  • Linn County
  • Louisa County
  • Marshall County
  • Muscatine County
  • Polk County
  • Poweshiek County
  • Scott County
  • Tama County
  • Washington County


JOHNSTON, Iowa (KTIV) -- Iowa Gov. Kim Reynolds is scheduled to hold a news conference Monday at 11 a.m. to update the public on the state's response to the COVID-19 coronavirus.

KTIV App Users: To watch the news conference on, click here.

Click here to watch the news conference on KTIV's Facebook page.

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Dean Welte

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