Safe Store Rules Go Into Effect April 3 to Help Prevent Spread of Coronavirus

This article was published on: 04/2/20 9:38 PM by Mike Minarsky

Effective upon the opening of each retail establishment for the first time on April 3, 2020, every retail establishment in the state will be required to take additional protective measures to reduce the risk of transmission of COVID-19 between and among customers, employees, and other persons such as delivery drivers and maintenance people. The order requires the commissioner of the Economic and Community Development to issue mandatory statewide rules prescribing such additional protective measures. Such rules will be mandatory throughout the state and supersede and preempt any current or contemplated municipal order.



Occupancy, store layout, and managing customer flow

  • Occupancy capped at 50% of store capacity. At entrance, staff will maintain a count of the number of customers entering and exiting stores.
  • Clearly mark 6’ spacing in lines on floor at checkout lines and other high-traffic areas and, as much as practicable, provide ways to encourage 6’ spacing in lines outside the store.
  • Post conspicuous signage and floor markings to direct customers and limit bottlenecks and/or encourage spacing and flow in high-density areas.
  • Have aisles be one-way in stores where practicable to maximize spacing between customers. Identify the one-way aisles with conspicuous signage and/or floor markings.
  • Maximize space between customers and employees at checkout lines, including, but not limited to, only using every other checkout line, where and when possible.
  • Install Plexiglas shields to separate employees from customers at checkout lines and other areas in the store where practicable.


  • Communicate with customers through in store signage, and public service announcements and advertisements, there should only be one person per household during shopping trips, whenever possible.
  • Discontinue all self-serve foods (e.g., salad bar, olive bar) and product sampling.
  • Allow “touchless” credit card transactions. If not possible, sanitize credit card machines (including pen) regularly and consistently.
  • Cart and basket handles sanitized between uses (by staff).
  • Wherever possible, employees will wear gloves and face masks at all times that they are interacting with customers and/or handling products.

3 Responses to “Safe Store Rules Go Into Effect April 3 to Help Prevent Spread of Coronavirus”

  1. Wiliiam Blackburn

    You want to charge more per month than a fully staffed daily newspaper charges for online access??? I don’t see the overhead expense comparison at all.

  2. Mike Minarsky

    It’s not more at all. If you are comparing our monthly charge to the .99 first 2-3 months access price, it would seem so. However, the Bulletin is $5.99/month after the first .99/month. We charge the same amount while also producing on demand podcasts, both audio and video to give area residents local information. Most, you can’t get anywhere else and nobody else does it. I think that makes us rather unique. I think the Norwich Bulletin creates a very good product. I read it too. I’m a big fan of John Shishmanian and his photography. But again, we’re different. We do different things. I hope you find value in what we do. Thanks for your comment!

  3. Mike Minarsky

    As far as your overhead cost comparison, I would point you again to value. I’m not sure if you are disputing our pricing model based on what gross margin % should or should not be? Plus, as far as a physical newspaper is concerned, my guess is, and I can’t speak for those companies, their online pricing has nothing to do with their circulation overhead. Now that insinuates those companies are being reactive to market trends compared to being proactive. As far as our operation, we are proactive only. We’ve only produced a digital product and what we have is unique. Are some of our stories the same as other outlets? You bet. Is most of our content items that started here? Yes. I just hope that we can provide VALUE to our customers. Thanks again for the feedback!

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