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Las Cruces hotels implementing new occupancy limits as virus cases rise

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Martha sanitizes the gym with an electrostatic spraying device at the Courtyard by Marriott Las Cruces at NMSU.

LAS CRUCES, New Mexico -- As New Mexico continues to shatter records for new daily virus cases, Las Cruces hotels must implement new occupancy limits.

"I'm not surprised with such an uptick in cases," said Amy Miller, the general manager at Courtyard by Marriott Las Cruces at NMSU. "It's a challenge and it's something that has to be done."

Starting Friday, hotels and motels that certified with the state's "Covid-19 safe practices" were limited to 60% occupancy. Establishments that have not completed the training are reduced to 25% occupancy.

On Thursday, Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham warned New Mexicans to not let their guards down.

"I have to believe we got tired," Lujan Grisham said. "We're incredibly physically and emotionally fatigued by this pandemic. Fair. But now we got to overcome it."

Miller told ABC-7 that revenue is down about 40%, compared with last year. Her staff of more than 50 at the beginning of the year was reduced to seven in March. Currently, she has about 40 people working at the hotel.

"It's really unpredictable right now, but in our case, it's been very steady and we're very grateful for that," Miller said.

Her staff is doubling down on cleaning protocols, wiping down public areas every two hours with a hydrogen-peroxide based cleaning solution, she said. Staff must wash their hands every 20 minutes. They have also acquired an electrostatic cleaning device.

"That's why we've been able to ride out this last wave," Miller said. "Hopefully we'll continue to do so because our guests are comfortable with us. They know that we're clean. They know that we're certified. They know that we're following every protocol to the utmost."

Kate Bieri

Kate Bieri is ABC-7’s New Mexico Mobile Newsroom reporter and co-anchors ABC-7’s weekend evening newscasts.

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