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Tucson restaurant owner reacts to Gov. Ducey Executive Order lifting occupancy limits

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TUCSON (KVOA) - In his midtown restaurant Friday, Barrio Charro owner Ray Flores said minutes after Governor Doug Ducey's executive order lifting capacity limits at restaurants statewide, Flores got texts from his managers and started fielding questions from customers on social media. He even got one from his son.

"We get asked everything and of course my 11-year-old son just asked me does that mean you can all come to my baseball tournament this weekend, so it hits the full gamut of experience for us," Flores said.

Flores is the president of Flores Concepts. He and his family own several restaurants in the Old Pueblo. He tells News 4 Tucson his businesses simply cannot just re-open to full capacity.

"It's not going to be overnight for us because we have to put back tables, take tape and stuff off the floor," Flores said. "There's a lot of things we need to do operationally including finding more staff because we've been operating on a reduced staff capacity because we've been operating because we've been operating under a reduced occupancy capacity."

"We have a very walk before we run mentality and make sure that we're ensuring the safest possible outcome for our guests as well as our staff members," Gary Hickey, executive chef of Flores concepts said.

As he and his staff begin to figure out how to move forward, Flores said his restaurants will follow Pima County guidelines.

"We have Pima County Health permits, those are critical to our operating practices," he said. "What's good with Pima County is going to be good with us. Hopefully, with some guidance from the Pima County Health Department, we'll go back to a number more like what we had before but within the ranges of what the health department advises for us to be operating under."

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Eric Fink

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