Natrona County authorities on Monday released phased reopening guidelines for individuals and businesses, a sign that a return to some semblance of normalcy may be materializing.

The plan will be further discussed at a news briefing set for 2 p.m. Tuesday. It will be available on the City of Casper YouTube channel, the Casper-Natrona County Health Department Facebook page and local ABC and FOX channels.

"The implementation of this plan is a direct result of the incredible, selfless sacrifices the people of Natrona County have been making to keep our community safe," Natrona County Health Officer Dr. Ghazi Ghanem said in announcing the plan Monday. "We believe in our community's ability to adhere to these phased re-opening guidelines. It will take all of us continuing to do all we can to come back strong."

Also Monday, the county's emergency operations center announced that restaurants can serve patrons seated outdoors, provided certain guidelines are followed.

The county is still at a 'moderate' risk level -- the second-highest on a scale of normal, low, moderate and high risk.

The guidelines generally call for the public and employers to take extreme precautions including wearing face coverings during interpersonal interactions that occur within a six-foot distance, leaving home infrequently, staying at least six feet away from others, limiting out-of-state travel and keeping schools closed.

"Your adherence to these guidelines are designed to keep Natrona County safe," county health officer Dr. Mark Dowell said. "Your adherence to these guidelines will be crucial for our collective success in fighting this disease and for opening our economy as soon as possible."

"The virus is not going away, it will continue to be a risk throughout the summer and will have a significant impact in the fall and winter months," Dowell added. "We have been blessed by the geography and the hard work of infection control and the Emergency Management Team and all of the community response to prevent a worst-case scenario with high cases and deaths from this virus."

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