Shelby County enters second phase of coronavirus economic recovery

By Sherman Greer and Suzanne Gibson
May 20, 2020

Shelby County Mayor Lee Harris and Health Department Director Alisa Haushalter announced the second phase of reopening the economy at a COVID-19 Joint Task Force briefing May 18.  Nail salons, tattoo parlors, sports facilities, spas and other close contact businesses will have certain restrictions lifted in getting back to business.

“Although we still have a long way to go in Shelby County's fight against COVID-19, we have made substantial progress and are therefore prepared to enter Phase 2,” Mayor Harris said. “We all played a role in getting to this important mile marker. We all have a role to play to get to the next one.”

While the move to Phase 2 opens up more businesses and social movement, restrictions on social distancing and capacity still apply. Approved establishments are allowed to increase their occupancy from 25 to 50 percent, and up to 50 people can gather in public, provided they remain 6 feet apart and wear facial coverings.  

The last phase of Mayor Harris’ Back-to-Business plan includes larger gatherings of as many as 250 people. Given this substantial increase in mass gatherings, Harris intends for the county to remain in Phase 2 for a minimum of 21 days instead of the usual 14-day period.

On May 18, Shelby County reported 3,761 COVID-19 cases and 85 deaths. According to the Shelby County Health Department, more than 65 percent of residents recovered from the deadly virus and more than 52,227 were tested.

For more information about the Health Department’s COVID-19 response, visit

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