Greenville Mayor Errick Simmons issues a new order that regulates how certain businesses operate during the COVID-19 pandemic. The order mandates that all businesses that offer drive-thru or drive-up service maintain strict social distancing guidelines. In a recent statement, the mayor makes clear that these businesses include, but are not limited to, "restaurants, churches, pharmacies, food pantries and any and all other establishments, businesses and organizations to lend themselves to drive-in or drive-up experiences and/or services."
While businesses are permitted to provide drive-up services, Simmons' mandate requires that patrons keep their windows up and only lower the window when receiving services from a business or organization. The order goes on to say, the 1st violation would be considered a misdemeanor offense resulting in a warning; whereas, violations thereafter would result in a fine of up to $500. This new order would be effective immediately.
This comes after recent controversy between Greenville's mayor and area church leaders, stemming from a previous order issued by Simmons that placed restrictions on houses of worship during the COVID-19 pandemic. Church leaders referencing the First Amendment's freedom of religion provision in response to those controversial orders.
Meanwhile, Governor Tate Reeves' shelter-in-place order remains in effect. The governor recently asked for seven more days before lifting certain restrictions. Reeves adamant about wanting to re-open safely.