Cripple Creek casinos may close as Teller County moves to Safer At Home level orange

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Wildwood Casino, Cripple Creek, Colorado.

TELLER COUNTY, Colo.– Cripple Creek casinos may close as the state health department plans to move Teller County to level orange on the Safer At Home COVID-19 dial.

As of November 15, Teller County has 391 cases and 4 deaths. The state of Colorado has 159,234 cases and 2,234 deaths due to COVID-19.

Effective Monday, November 16, 2020 at 5:00 p.m., additional state restrictions that will go into place include, but are not limited to:

  • Personal gatherings are restricted to no more than 10 people from no more than two (2) households.
  • Restaurants may operate at 25% (down from 50%) of posted occupancy indoors, not to exceed 50 people, excluding staff.
  • Houses of worship and indoor events may operate at 25% (down from 50%) of posted occupancy indoors, not to exceed 50 people, per room.
  • Outdoor events may operate at 25% (down from 50%) of posted occupancy not to exceed 75 (down from 175) people, whichever is less.
  • Other commercial businesses, including gyms and fitness centers, may operate at 25% of posted
    occupancy indoors, unless they are otherwise designated as essential.
  • Casinos are CLOSED (unless a possible exception is granted based on county request).

The Teller County Board of County Commissioners responded to the announcement with the following statement:

Moving to Orange will affect all of Teller County but especially the casino industry in Cripple Creek. Casinos have been singled out in the Public Health Order as the only industry required to close under the Orange designation with the exception of alcohol only bars. We argued that casinos should remain open similar to restaurants, gyms, retail establishments, and schools. To date, only 5% of Teller County’s total cases have been traced to the Cripple Creek area. The casinos in Cripple Creek have done an exemplary job of compliance to COVID-19 state regulations. Their protocols, sanitation, temperature checks, and response to a small outbreak have all been handled effectively and expeditiously. Public safety is critical as is economic vitality and sustainability. This delicate balance must not favor one side over the other. We believe we must keep local businesses open and their people employed in a fair and rational manner, meanwhile taking every necessary health precaution to reduce disease transmission. More than 1,000 jobs are at stake and critical gaming tax revenue would be lost if casinos are shuttered.

Teller County Board of County Commissioners

The Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment (CDPHE) has indicated that they may allow casinos to remain open and will notify the county commissioners on Monday, November 16, 2020.

Teller County will join El Paso County and Pueblo County in level orange.

The following restrictions are in place for each level of the Safer At Home dial:

>> Click here to access the COVID-19 Dial dashboard.

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