Framework for Reopening the City of Rehoboth Beach

Delaware is in Phase 2

Governor Carney Announces Additional COVID-19 Restrictions to Confront Winter Surge

Most establishments limited to 30 percent capacity; larger retail limited to 20 percent to reduce crowds; 10 p.m. curfew instituted at restaurants and bars; additional enforcement measures announced; Stay-at-Home advisory in effect December 14-January 11

Governor John Carney signed the fourth revision to the omnibus emergency order, announcing additional restrictions to confront the winter surge of COVID-19 hospitalizations in Delaware. Additional restrictions include: 

  • Businesses above 100,000 square feet are limited to 20 percent of stated fire capacity. 
  • All other businesses, including most retail stores and all restaurants, are limited to 30 percent of stated fire capacity. 
  • Retail below 5,000 square feet, all Houses of Worship, and funeral services are limited to 40 percent of stated fire capacity. 
  • A 10 p.m. curfew will be imposed at Delaware restaurants and bars.
  • Exercise classes at gyms are limited to 10 people and exercise machines must be spaced 10 feet apart
  • Indoor gatherings at businesses or indoor spaces open to the public must be limited to the lesser of 30 percent of the venue’s stated fire capacity, or 10 people.

Click here to read Governor Carney’s modification.

Employees are excluded from business capacity restriction calculations. 

All new restrictions took effect at 8 a.m. on Monday, December 14. Governor Carney’s fourth revision also formally authorizes previously announced restrictions:

  • Stay-at-Home Advisory: Delawareans are strongly advised to stay at home and not to gather with anyone outside their household from December 14-January 11 to reduce the dangerous surge of COVID-19 cases and hospitalizations.
  • Universal mask mandate: Delawareans and visitors must wear masks anytime they are indoors with anyone outside of their household.

“These additional restrictions are intended to protect Delaware’s hospital capacity and protect lives this winter,” said Governor Carney. “Health care workers are on the job around the clock, caring for the sick. We all need to follow their lead and do our part to protect others. Don’t gather with anyone outside of your household. Any interaction is riskier when community spread is at current levels. Wear a mask whenever you’re around someone outside your household – even if they’re family or friends. Wash or sanitize your hands frequently. COVID-19 can cause serious illness and worse, especially for our most vulnerable friends, family members, and neighbors. Please take this seriously.”

Delaware entered Phase 2 of the economic reopening on June 15, 2020. Delaware will delay moving to Phase 3. Governor Carney’s Phase 2 reopening plan builds on the Phase 1 plan and provides additional general and sector-specific guidance for Delawareans and Delaware businesses.

View all active COVID-19 restrictions under the Twenty-Seventh Modification to the State of Emergency.

Application for Outdoor Seating

House Bill 349 was signed by Governor Carney allowing outdoor dining and consumption of alcohol outdoors through March 31, 2021. The bill extends the State of Emergency provisions allowing food and drink establishments to sell alcoholic beverages for take-out, curbside or drive-through service, and to expand their outdoor seating space, increasing their square footage and overall seating capacity. Restaurants may continue to apply to use sidewalks for outdoor seating by submitting an PDF icon Application for Outdoor Seating. 

At their October 6, 2020, special meeting, the Rehoboth commissioners approved a policy regarding the use of public outdoor space. Restaurants must have a straight and continuous minimum of five feet of sidewalk in front of any outdoor seating that must be maintained at all times. Space allows pedestrians to move up and down the sidewalks without adjusting their path because of the outdoor seating. The approved policy also requires that outdoor tables be set eight feet apart from each other. A barrier is needed between the tables and the pedestrian path if a restaurant is serving alcohol. Commissioners also approved tents and canopies without sides to be used in outdoor dining areas.

Outdoor heaters that are fueled by propane were also approved. Electric heaters or open flame are not allowed under the policy. The heaters must also be placed at least five feet from a restaurant's entrance and exit. The heaters must be secured and can only be in place during operating hours. 

The City's Building and Licensing staff will continue to work closely with all restaurants for their outdoor seating plan as we move into the fall and winter months. 

These policies will stay in effect through March 31, 2021. 

City of Rehoboth Beach Modifies Face Covering Requirement

The Rehoboth Beach commissioners unanimously voted to modify the City’s Proclamation of Civil Emergency and Order that face coverings are required in all public places. The decision was made at their July 7, 2020, special meeting. While the health and safety of our community remain the top priority, the commissioners have reevaluated and determined they will be lifting the requirement of face coverings at the beach. All persons within the City of Rehoboth Beach are required to wear a face covering in all public places, including streets, sidewalks, parks, the Boardwalk and commercial establishments, with the following exceptions:

  • Facial coverings shall not be required while actively bathing in ocean water.
  • Facial coverings shall be required while entering and leaving the beach. Face coverings shall not be required to be worn while on the beach when social distancing of 6 feet is possible.
  • Facial coverings shall not be required to be worn while exercising when social distancing is possible. Exercise is defined as a strenuous activity requiring physical effort, carried out to sustain or improve health and fitness.

Helpful Links

Know Your COVID-19 Status Find a Testing Site Near You

Delaware's Response to Coronavirus Disease -

Delaware's Recovery and Reopening -

Delaware Health and Social Services -

Delaware News -

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention -

City of Rehoboth Beach CodeRED -

City of Rehoboth Beach Proclamation of Civil Emergency and Order Concerning the COVID-19 Pandemic:

PDF icon City of Rehoboth Beach Proclamation of Civil Emergency and Order

PDF icon City of Rehoboth Beach Proclamation of Civil Emergency and Order - First Modification

PDF icon City of Rehoboth Beach Proclamation of Civil Emergency Order - Second Modification

PDF icon City of Rehoboth Beach Proclamation of Civil Emergency and Order - Third Modification

PDF icon City of Rehoboth Beach Proclamation of Civil Emergency and Order - Fourth Modification