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Read the full text of Anchorage’s Emergency Order 16, the modified hunker-down order

  • Author: Anchorage Daily News
  • Updated: November 26, 2020
  • Published November 25, 2020

Anchorage Acting Mayor Austin Quinn-Davidson on Wednesday announced that the municipality will return to a limited hunker-down order for the month of December, with no indoor dining allowed at restaurants or bars, stricter gathering size limits, more limited capacity at various businesses and the closure of indoor entertainment facilities. Additionally, everyone within the municipality “shall limit outings and physical contact with those outside of their household” under the order, which takes effect at 8 a.m. Dec. 1 and runs through 8 a.m. Jan. 1.

Read the full text of the new emergency order below.

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ISSUED BY THE ACTING MAYOR OF THE MUNICIPALITY OF ANCHORAGE PURSUANT TO ANCHORAGE MUNICIPAL CODE SECTION 3.80.060H. Anchorage is on the brink of overwhelming our public health capacity, endangering the lives and wellbeing of the people of Anchorage. For several weeks in a row we have been reaching dangerous new highs in the numbers of new cases and numbers of people hospitalized for COVID-19. To reduce the level of COVID-19 transmission in our community we need individuals to temporarily return to hunker down behaviors, and we need businesses to temporarily close where they cannot keep individuals six feet apart, masked, and prevent lingering.

The following findings about COVID-19 motivate these mandates and recommendations. First, COVID-19 is a respiratory virus. It moves from person to person through tiny respiratory droplets and aerosols that are released when a person with COVID-19 coughs, sneezes, talks, or sings. People become infected by inhaling these droplets or aerosols. Second, this virus spreads easily to people who are in close contact to a person with COVID19, especially indoors, and especially when the contact lasts more than fifteen minutes. Third, even people with no symptoms can be highly infectious to the people around them. Fourth, keeping a safe distance-at least 6 feet-away from other people outside your household is the best way to reduce transmission and prevent infection. Fifth, face coverings help protect the wearer and other people from COVID-19. Because of the above, Anchorage now needs the following restrictions on public interactions to preserve health and save lives in our community.


1. Individuals. Everyone in the Municipality of Anchorage (the “Municipality”) shall limit outings and physical contact with those outside of their household. On the occasions when individuals leave home, they shall maintain physical distancing of at least six feet from any person outside their household whenever possible. Individuals m physically going to their workplace if it is possible to work remotely and should avoid physically entering indoor spaces outside the home to the greatest extent possible, instead using curbside or delivery services, minimizing the number of shopping trips, and minimizing the number of household members on each outing. Individuals are required to wear a face covering or mask in public, as detailed in Emergency Order 13. Individuals are also strongly encouraged to practice recommended hygiene, including regular hand washing.

2. Requirements for Individuals Likely to be Contagious with COVID-19. Individuals likely to be contagious with COVID-19 are required to minimize contact with others as follows:

a. People who are exhibiting symptoms of COVID-19 (including the following symptoms when not attributable to other known causes: coughing, shortness of breath, fever, fatigue, chills, muscle pain, sore throat, headache, congestion or runny nose, diarrhea, or new loss of taste or smell) shall stay home except to seek medical care and testing.

b. As detailed in the State’s Health Order No. 6, individuals who have traveled from outside Alaska are required upon arrival/return to limit contact with others pending negative COVID-19 testing results or to self-quarantine.

c. Household members of those who are possibly contagious should exercise physical distancing and enhanced hygiene within the home, and refrain from leaving the home to the extent possible.

d. Individuals who learn that they have been a close contact of a positive case (within 6 feet for fifteen minutes during a 24-hour period) shall quarantine for the length of time directed by a public health professional.

e. Individuals who have tested positive for COVID-19 shall remain in isolation during their infectious period, which is ten days following symptom onset (or a positive test date if asymptomatic) or for a different time period directed by their health care provider.

3. Gathering Limitations. All individuals must wear masks or face coverings and maintain six feet of physical distancing between household groups at all gatherings. Gatherings are defined as meetings or other events that bring together people from multiple households at the same time for a shared or group experience in a single room, space, or place such as auditorium, stadium, arena, conference room, meeting hall, or other indoor or outdoor space. All indoor gatherings are limited to six people in a single enclosed indoor space. All outdoor gatherings are limited to 10 people. The following exceptions apply to the gathering limits:

a. The gathering limitation does not limit drive-in events where groups remain within separate vehicles spaced at least six feet apart (or ten feet apart if singing by audience members is anticipated) so long as no food, drink, or other goods are passed between vehicles.

b. The gathering limitation does not apply to daycares, day camps, or educational institutions for grades pre-K through 12. For capacity limitations for daycares and day camps, see Attachments A and B. Educational institutions with grades pre-K through 12 are subject to an indoor capacity limitation of 50% of classroom occupancy based on building and fire codes.

c. Wedding and funeral services without food or drink are subject to a limit of 20 people. Wedding or funeral receptions with food or drink are subject to the above limits of six people indoors or ten people outdoors.

d. The gathering limitation does not apply to gathering for the purpose of worship or political expression where masks are continuously worn and where food and drink are not consumed. Worship services and political expression gatherings are instead subject to a 50% indoor capacity limitation based on building and fire codes, and physical distancing should be maintained continuously between different households. All places of worship and political expression that are open to the public for gatherings must create written COVID-19 mitigation plans, maintain hard copies on site, make the plans available to congregants or other visitors, and train staff on implementation of the plans. Religious communities and individuals facilitating political expression are strongly encouraged to be more stringent by conducting virtual gatherings online, limiting any in person gatherings to 25% of indoor capacity, and eliminating in-person singing by congregants or choirs.

e. The gathering limitation does not apply to indoor shopping special events, such as holiday bazaars. These entities are instead subject to the limitations and other criteria in Attachment C.

f. University classrooms may continue to operate under the prior 15-person indoor gathering limitation.

4. Hospitality Industry (Including Bars, Breweries, Restaurants, and Nightclubs) Closed Except for Outdoor Dining, Take-out and Delivery Service. All restaurants, bars, breweries, and nightclubs and similar entities are closed except to allow outdoor dining, take-out, and delivery service. The outdoor areas of restaurants, bars, and breweries are limited to table service, with each table ten feet apart or greater, measured edge to edge. Outdoor tents must have the equivalent of two sides open to allow ventilation. Other outdoor dining situations (like tents designed to shelter a single household) must be submitted to the Anchorage Health Department for approval prior to use under this EO. Additional requirements for outdoor service are provided in Attachment D.

5. Bingo Halls, Theaters, Private Clubs, and Other Recreation and Entertainment Facilities Closed. Indoor entertainment and recreation facilities, including bingo halls, theaters, bowling alleys, and arcades must be closed.

6. Organized Sports Subject to Limitations and Closed to Indoor Competition. Organized sports teams may not gather with or compete against other teams indoors. Teams may not conduct indoor practice that requires players to be within ten feet of each other, but may conduct indoor trainings or practices that allow physical distancing to be maintained, subject to the requirements in Attachment E. Outdoor sports may continue subject to the requirements in Attachment E. Teams from the Municipality of Anchorage that cannot play or practice in the Municipality should not travel outside the Municipality for practice or competition.

7. Indoor Gyms, Recreation and Fitness Centers are Capped at 25% of Capacity and Group Classes Limited. Indoor gyms, recreation and fitness centers are limited to 25% of building occupancy based on fire and building codes. Indoor group fitness classes require ten feet of physical distancing between participants. Additional requirements for indoor gyms and fitness centers are provided in Attachment F.

8. Salons and Personal Care Service Providers Limited. Salons and personal care service providers are limited to 25% of fire code capacity. Additionally, these entities must cease providing services that require the removal of a mask such as facials or beard trimming. Additional requirements for this industry are provided in Attachment G.

9. Retail and Other Public-Facing Businesses. Retail stores and all other public-facing businesses not mentioned above are limited to 25% of building occupancy and must operate in a manner sufficient to permit customers to have six-feet of physical distance from other household groups. These businesses are encouraged to prioritize telephone and online ordering; increase their offerings of curbside, entryway, and delivery services, and implement reserved hours of operation limited to high-risk populations.

10. Legible Visitor Logs Required. Any establishments serving the public in a sit-down setting, or for an in-person appointment or service lasting fifteen minutes or longer shall require all adult customers or clients to sign in with legible contact information including first and last name, phone number, and email address in case it is needed for state or local contact tracing efforts. This information may be kept electronically. This information must be retained by businesses for not less than 30 days. Information in the visitor log will not be collected unless needed for contact tracing or enforcement of this order.

11. Communication to Employees and Others of Known COVID-19 Exposure Required. All businesses and other entities must promptly communicate to their employees and state and local public health departments (email: if a known or probable COVID-19 exposure occurred in the workplace. Businesses and other entities must assist the state and local health departments in the process of informing customers or clients of a known COVID-19 exposure at the workplace.

12. Additional Requirements for Hotels and Other Lodging. Management at hotels and other places of lodging must regularly inform employees working within the lodging and state and local public health departments ( whether and to what extent the hotel is housing individuals who are in quarantine or isolation due to travel, possible exposure to COVID-19, or a diagnosis of COVID-19. Hotel management must inform employees that the names of individuals with COVID 19 shall be kept confidential, and that a violation of confidentiality may result in disciplinary action by management. Hotels must supply personal protective equipment, sufficient sanitation opportunities, and adequate cleaning supplies to employees.

13. Remote Work. Employers must require employees to work from home when their work can be accomplished remotely without significantly impeding business operations. Employers shall not knowingly permit symptomatic employees or others likely to be contagious with COVID-19 to enter the workplace or work outside the home.

14. Penalties. In addition to fines and other penalties currently provided by law, violations of this emergency order may result in mandatory suspension of activities or closure of individual businesses, non-profits, and other entities for a period of up to two weeks.

ISSUED this 25th day of November, 2020.

Austin Quinn-Davidson, Acting Mayor

Municipality of Anchorage, Alaska