San Juan County Granted Variance to Move to Phase 2

This story has been updated since it was first published…

The variance application submitted Friday afternoon was approved by the Secretary of Health mid-day on Saturday, allowing San Juan County to proceed to Phase 2 of the Governor’s four-phased Safe Start Washington plan effective immediately.

San Juan County Council Chair Rick Hughes highlights the importance of this approval, “Our community can now start to slowly re-open, a much-needed step for many of our local businesses. I appreciate the quick work of the San Juan County team in submitting the application, and the State Secretary of Health for prompt review and approval. If we all closely follow the requirements in place to minimize the risk of transmission, I’m confident we can proceed to Phase 2 safely and responsibly.”

An individual business may only open under Phase 2 once it can do so safely by meeting the guidelines for Phase 2 opening found on the Governor’s website. A few are listed below:

Now that San Juan County is in Phase 2, face coverings are required in all public businesses as per San Juan County Health Officer order 2020-4. To help educate the public and customers of this critical requirement to ensure the health of our community several printable posters have been developed. Businesses have 48 hours from the move to Phase 2 to post signage- mid-day on Monday the 25th.

In addition, as per San Juan County Health Officer order 2020-1 and 2020-5, the ban on transient lodging for non-essential travel remains in place until the Governor moves San Juan County to Phase 3. The ban on camping and transient moorage remains in place as well, though camping is now allowed on the non-ferry served islands.

Please remember that in both Phases 2 and 3, high risk populations are strongly encouraged to stay home to the full extent possible. More information on high risk populations is available from the CDC.

For more information about COVID-19 and the ongoing San Juan County response, visit

Posted on May 23, 2020 at 4:53 pm by

Categories: Business, Government, Health & Wellness
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