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Washington Health Officials Add Three New Counties To Eligible Variance List

Washington Department of Health

Washington state health officials have added three more counties to list of those eligible to apply for coronavirus-related variances.

Grant County is the only one of the three east of the Cascades. It means 13 counties, including Spokane and Adams, are eligible to apply to move to phase two of the state’s four-phase protocol. If successful, they would join 10 other counties that have already advanced to phase two.

Most of the state’s counties are in phase one. That designation is valid until the end of the month, unless the state offers special variances.

Spokane officials sent in their revised application for a variance on Wednesday. They hope to get permission on Friday to open up more businesses, in time for the Memorial Day weekend.

The new counties must show they’ve had an average of fewer than 10 new cases per 100,000 residents over a 14-day period. Spokane County reported 13 new cases on Thursday, the largest increase in more than two weeks.