SANTA FE, New Mexico — New Mexico officials said they're “tightening” the definition of essential businesses to exclude some "big box" stores that sell some essential supplies as the state on Wednesday reported a record-high number of Covid-19 cases for the second day in a row.
In order to accept in-person customers as of Thursday, "large retailers" will be required to generate more than a third of their revenue from essential goods like food.
That means stores like Hobby Lobby, which sells arts and craft supplies, or Ross Dress for Less, which mostly sells clothes but occasionally sells food, will have to serve customers curbside or through delivery only, said Nora Meyers Sackett, a spokesperson for Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham.
It's unclear if stores like Target and Walmart, which sell groceries, or REI, an outdoor retailer that has a bike shop, might be deemed essential and allowed to remain open under the new rules without seeing a breakdown of their sales.
“Regardless, they are encouraged and indeed urged to be good partners in this public health effort and reduce operations to curbside exclusively to the greatest extent possible,” Sackett said.
Essential retailers still may not have more than 75 customers inside a store or exceed 25% maximum capacity.