Restrictions on JBLM return

George releases list of changes for base life

By Claire Nunn on November 16, 2020

As COVID-19 proliferates across the South Sound, Lt. Gen. Randy George, commander I Corps and Joint Base Lewis-McChord said the base must return to more stringent restrictions.

“Covid has required us to make some adjustments,” George said. “We have stayed in line with the majority of Governor Inslee’s restrictions.”

Yesterday, Governor Jay Inslee increased off base restrictions, prompting George to move his normal townhall up a day to make these announcements. Typically, George addresses the JBLM community every other Tuesday at 3 pm. A townhall was scheduled for Tuesday.

New restrictions will be the following, going into effect tonight at 11:59 pm through December 14.

• Commissary, shoppettes and PX/BX reduced to 50% capacity. All other public shopping areas, barber shops, etc to be 25% capacity.  Black Friday is still planned, but stay tuned to the Exchange's websites.

• Food places are take-out only.

• Warrior Restaurants are 25% capacity for eating in.

• Warrior Zone is open at 25% capacity.

• Gyms are open for active duty only.

• Swimming pools open for active duty only for fitness and military training.

• Faith based services are at 25% capacity.

• Bowling alley to be closed. The movie theater won’t re-open.

• No indoor social gatherings. Only households can be together inside (boyfriends and girlfriends considered parts of household). You can gather outside with 5 people outside your family.

• There are no changes to medical services or appointments, Waller Hall or child care.

• Winterfest will not be cancelled, however the ice skating will not happen.  Trees for Troops has not been impacted.  The tree lighting will be virtual.

• Holiday travel is not restricted for soldiers or airmen.  Those returning out of state may have to quarantine upon their return.  George said those decisions will be made at the unit's O-6 level.

• Visiting family members should quarantine before arriving here, plus receive a test per Governor Inslee's recommendations.  George asked military personnel to keep their command updated on visitors.

• Youth sports activities will pause seeing they are all moving indoors.  A refund will be issued.

In other news ...

• George said the base must balance training and caring for single servicemembers who are in barracks.

• Santa's Castle, Turkey Drop and Ham Grenade will still happen - coordinate with your chain of command.

• George said units will make decisions on any reduced mannings.  There is no blanket policy.

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• Currently Madigan does not have a shortage of bed space or ventilators.

• There is no news on whether a COVID vaccine will be mandatory to military personnel, however, George quipped that in his career taking a shot has never been voluntary.

The Lewis and McChord commissaries have already set purchase limits and implemented a 50% occupancy level at both stores.

The following (copied from JBLM’s Facebook page) are subject to rations:

-- Bleach / One/1 Unit

-- Disinfectant (Spray) / ONE/1 can

-- Sanitizer (Hand) / Two/ 2 unit

-- Hand Soap / TWO/2 Units

-- Wipes (Baby) / ONE/1 pkg

-- Wipes (Hand Sanitizing) / One/1 pkg

-- Flour / One/1 Bag

-- Rice / One/1 25lb bag or 2 smaller bags

-- Toilet Paper / One/1 Unit

-- Paper Towels/ One/1 Unit

-- Napkins / One/1 Unit

-- Tissues / One/1 Unit

-- Ramen Noodles / One/1 12pk or One/1 6 pk cups / No more than 12 Single Pk

-- Gallon Water Jugs/ Two/2 Jugs

-- Case Water One/1 Case


-- Chicken: 2 cuts each per transaction/visit

-- Beef: 2 cuts each per transaction/visit

-- Pork: 2 cuts each per transaction/visit

Other Items may be added at a later date due to supply and demand.

 Col. Skye Duncan, garrison commander said the supply chains look "solid."

Inslee announced Sunday the following rules to take effect statewide at 11:59 pm today (these are copied from the state's website):

If the activity is not listed, it should follow its current guidance. All K-12/higher education, health care, and childcare are exempt from the new restrictions and will follow current guidance. These restrictions do not apply to courts and judicial branch-related proceedings.
1. Indoor Social Gatherings with people from outside your household are prohibited unless they (a) quarantine for fourteen days (14) prior to the social gathering; or (b) quarantine for seven (7) days prior to the social gathering and receive a negative COVID-19 test result no more than 48-hours prior to the gathering. A household is defined as individuals residing in the same domicile.
2. Outdoor Social Gatherings shall be limited to five (5) people from outside your household.
3. Restaurants and Bars are closed for indoor dine-in service. Outdoor dining and to-go service are permitted, provided that all outdoor dining must comply with the requirements of the Outdoor Dining Guidance. Table size for outdoor dining is limited to a maximum of five (5) people. These modified restaurant and bar restrictions go into effect at 12:01 a.m. Wednesday, November 18, 2020.
4. Fitness Facilities and Gyms are closed for indoor operations. Outdoor fitness classes are permitted but are subject to and limited by the outdoor social gathering restriction listed above.
5. Bowling Centers are closed for indoor service.
6. Miscellaneous Venues: All retail activities and business meetings are prohibited. Only professional training and testing that cannot be performed remotely, as well as all court and judicial branch-related proceedings, are allowed. Occupancy in each meeting room is limited to 25 percent of indoor occupancy limits or 100 people, whichever is fewer.
Miscellaneous venues include: convention/conference centers, designated meeting spaces in a hotel, events centers, fairgrounds, sporting arenas, nonprofit establishment, or a substantially similar venue.
7. Movie Theaters are closed for indoor service. Drive-in movie theaters are permitted and must continue to follow current drive-in movie theater guidance.

8. Museums/Zoos/Aquariums are closed for indoor service.
9. Real Estate: Open houses are prohibited.
10. Wedding and Funerals: Ceremonies are limited to a total of no more than 30 people. Indoor receptions, wakes, or similar gatherings in conjunction with such ceremonies are prohibited.
11. In-Store Retail shall be limited to 25 percent of indoor occupancy limits, and common/congregate seating areas and indoor dining facilities such as food courts are closed.
12. Religious Services are limited to 25 percent of indoor occupancy limits, or no more than 200 people, whichever is fewer. Congregation members/attendees must wear facial coverings at all times and congregation singing is prohibited. No choir, band, or ensemble shall perform during the service. Vocal or instrumental soloists are permitted to perform, and vocal soloists may have a single accompanist. Outdoor services must follow the Outdoor Dining Guidance, found here, applicable to the structure or facility.
13. Professional Services are required to mandate that employees work from home when possible and close offices to the public if possible. Any office that must remain open must limit occupancy to 25 percent of indoor occupancy limits.
14. Personal Services are limited to 25 percent of indoor occupancy limits.
Personal service providers include: cosmetologists, cosmetology testing, hairstylists, barbers, estheticians, master estheticians, manicurists, nail salon workers, electrologists, permanent makeup artists, tanning salons, and tattoo artists.
15. Long-term Care Facilities: Outdoor visits are permitted. Indoor visits are prohibited, but individual exceptions for an essential support person or end-of-life care are permitted. These restrictions are also extended to the facilities in Proclamation 20-74, et seq. All other provisions of Proclamations 20-66, et seq., and 20-74, et seq., including all preliminary criteria to allow any visitors, remain in effect.
16. Youth and Adult Sporting Activities: Indoor activities and all contests and games are prohibited. Outdoor activities shall be limited to intra-team practices only, with facial coverings required for all coaches, volunteers and athletes at all times.

The Defense Department on Friday reinstated travel restrictions at seven bases for personnel as a result of the coronavirus pandemic in their local areas, according to a Pentagon document released Thursday. The bases are Grand Forks Air Force Base and Minot Air Force Base in North Dakota, Kirtland Air Force Base in New Mexico, McConnell Air Force Base in Kansas, Naval Support Activity Mid-South in Tennessee, and Naval Air Station Sigonella and Naval Support Activity in Italy.

As of November 9, 147 of 231 installations, or about 64%, have lifted travel restrictions, meaning they have met specific criteria including the base’s health protection condition level being above “Charlie” and essential services are available, according to the Pentagon.

The Pentagon is expected to reinstate more travel restrictions this coming week.

The JBLM Morale, Welfare and Recreation office is offering convenient take out options to facilitate your Thanksgiving plans.

“This year we are offering two Thanksgiving meal options in two different sizes,” said Dorte West, MWR business manager. “Customers can purchase entire meals cooked and ready-to-eat or a take-and-bake option, with everything prepared and ready for the oven.”

The first meal option feeds six to eight people with a choice of roasted turkey or glazed ham, homestyle cornbread stuffing, mashed potatoes with turkey gravy, green bean casserole, sweet potato casserole, homemade cranberry sauce with pickled peaches and a homemade pumpkin pie.

The second meal option feeds eight to 12 and includes a roasted turkey and a glazed ham, all the sides and desserts from the first meal option and a home-baked apple pie.

“We are accepting orders through Nov. 23,” West said. “If customers have any questions about orders, pricing or pickup, they can feel free to give us a call!”

West and her catering team can be contacted at 253-966-4998 or 253-966-3987 from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. weekdays. Orders will be ready for pickup between noon and 6 p.m. Nov. 25 and between 9 a.m. to noon Nov. 26.