Tuesday’s announcement of new restaurant and retail restrictions by Governor Lujan Grisham has businesses scrambling to keep up and meet the requirements to remain open. While the indoor dining and shopping capacities were not curtailed, as many feared might happen, the new rules have left businesses with lots of questions about how to implement them and what the possible legal implications are for some. In particular, the mandate for employee spot checks at work and the collection of customer information has raised the hackles of a few business owners who fear that could be a violation of employees civil rights. Further complicating things are the litany of unanswered questions on how to enforce the new rules.
For example “Restaurants wishing to continue limited indoor dining must require customers who dine on-site to list their name and contact information in a logbook, and retain the information for no less than three weeks, to assist state regulators in contact-tracing efforts” according to the Governor. But this rule leaves many details out:
- What is included in “contact information”? Name, email, phone?
- Does the log have to have a certain format?
- What if the customer refuses? Are restaurants to refuse service?
- If they customer provides fake information or a fake name, are businesses to refuse service?
- Does just one person in the party have to be tracked, or is it every customer?
- Does this have to be done upon arrival, or can it be done as part of the check?
- Are businesses required to match ID to the logbook?
- Do outdoor diners also need to be tracked?
And the above questions only pertain to one aspect of the multiple new rules. Without clarification from the Governor businesses risk being cited for noncompliance, especially those operating in Albuquerque where an enforcement blitz is expected for this weekend.