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Mass. Restaurants Want In On Phase One

More than 100 small restaurant owners have written to Gov. Charlie Baker and Lt. Gov. Karyn Polito asking to reopen for business next Tuesday and to be allowed to ramp up to full capacity within 30 days.

Baker has not said whether restaurants will be included in the first phase of reopenings that could start as soon as next week, but these restaurants laid out a set of their own criteria under which they think they can safely operate.

The restaurant owners, who are not members of the Massachusetts Restaurant Association, said they'd chosen Dave Andelman of Phantom Gourmet and Mendon Twin Drive-In, to speak for them.

"Hard-working industry employees have been denied the right to make a living, and many will lose their job permanently. To create a safe, legal framework to reopen, we deserve a seat at the table, guidelines and a timetable, now," the group wrote.

They pledged to reconfigure dining spaces and bars to meet six-foot social distancing standards, to sanitize, to put down marked lines outside for waiting, to clean or use disposable menus after each use, to test employee temperatures, to reduce the capacity of multiple-occupancy restrooms, to require masks at all times except for seated customers and to post pictures on social media to prove compliance.

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