CHICO, Calif. - COVID-19 infection trends have Butte County on pace to move to the more restrictive red tier next week. That means business owners yet again must prepare to take a hit financially.
It has been very difficult for businesses like The Pour House in Chico to make constant changes to their restaurant.
"I am worried if we can't have much of an indoor space," said Owner of Pour House, Gary Lewis.
After Butte County Public Health announced Tuesday that the county could be heading back to a more restrictive tier, Lewis said he is now worried for his business.
"Now, we try to imagine what is going to happen if it is windy, rainy, and thereby not having any outdoors and then limited to 25% only indoors...I could imagine that at some point it gets to a point where it makes more sense to close," said Lewis.
The Chico Chamber of Commerce said that businesses would be hit hard if the county goes back into the red tier.
"The restaurants I have been in contact with, they can't even pay their rent or cover their overhead operating at 25% capacity and of course, with the weather changing, everyone is going to have to have to move inside," said President for Chico Chamber of Commerce, Katy Thoma.
Lewis said that although he has about 20 heat lamps set up on his outdoor patio, he doesn't think this will be enough for people to want to sit outside.
"I don't see people wanting to live through the outdoor experience," said Lewis.
He said that short-term, the restaurant may be able to financially afford being open 25% indoors with no outdoor services but any longer than four to five months, and the restaurant would have no choice but to close.
Right now, The Pour House can seat up to 160 people outside and 100 people inside.
For more information on what can and can't be open in the states tier system, click HERE.