Curfew reprieve extended for Oklahoma bars, restaurants
OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) — An Oklahoma judge has extended a temporary restraining order allowing bars and restaurants across Oklahoma to stay open past an 11 p.m. curfew issued in November by Gov. Kevin Stitt in an effort to slow the spread of the coronavirus.
District Judge Susan Stallings heard arguments in the case Friday and extended the Dec. 29 order while she considers ruling in the lawsuit by bar owners who argue the governor doesn’t have legal authority to impose the curfew, according to court records.
Attorneys for the governor say state law gives Stitt “broad and flexible authority needed” to combat the spread of the virus.
On Saturday, Oklahoma has the sixth most new cases per capita in the nation with 1,218.16 per 100,000 residents, according to data from Johns Hopkins University. The state health department on Saturday reported 324,875 total cases and 2,738 deaths since the pandemic began, increases 4,289 cases and 35 deaths from Friday.
Oklahoma’s positivity rate of 26.3% is up from 14.5% on Dec. 25 and the seven-day rolling average of new cases has increased from 2,970.4 per day to 4,235.7, according to the Johns Hopkins data. The seven-day rolling average of deaths rose from 23.8 per day to 30.5.