Even though he abided by the guidance, albeit with an appointment-only provision and limited hours, Murphy clearly wasn’t happy about it. “It wouldn’t be my definition,” Murphy said at a Monday briefing, “but that’s the definition at the federal level, and I didn’t get a vote on that.”
As it turns out, some states (and the federal government) have very different ideas of what’s considered essential or nonessential. And some companies have even declared themselves essential, like craft and fabrics chain JoAnn Fabrics and GameStop.
Liquor stores have also been deemed essential in most states. Earlier this month, the Wine and Spirits Wholesalers of America asked states to keep stores open “so as to not encourage bad actors to pop up black-market liquor operations,” according to industry magazine Drinks International.
“Gov. Tom Wolf should consider the huge impact his decision has had and reevaluate the complete closure of all Fine Wine and Good Spirits stores in Pennsylvania,” the presidents of the Distilled Spirits Council and American Distilled Spirits Association wrote in a joint op-ed published by the Lehigh Valley Morning Call on Tuesday.
A previous order by Ducey issued last week allows for hair salons in Arizona to stay open, despite other states prohibiting them because of the close contact involved. “We’re sanitizing everything that our guests are touching, door handles, chairs and underneath the chairs,” one Tucson salon worker told TV station KOLD. “We’ve gotten rid of all our magazines just so they’re not touching those.”
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At least 30 states and Washington, D.C., have handed down shelter-in-place or stay at home orders of varying levels of severity, according to CNN. Most have ordered nonessential businesses to close, but what’s considered essential can vary from state to state, aside from the obvious ones: medical facilities, grocery stores, pharmacies, and gas stations, to name a few.
The exception is Pennsylvania, where the state-owned wine and liquor stores have been closed since March 17 — St. Patrick’s Day.
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