After governor announces reopening changes, businesses see light at the end of the tunnel

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ALBUQUERQUE, N.M.- Counties that have been stuck in New Mexico’s Yellow level of restrictions have a better chance of moving to Green or Turquoise.

As more people in the state get vaccinated, the governor announced relaxed gating criteria.

Bernalillo County is poised to move into Green level of restrictions on Friday.

It allows bars to open their outdoor spaces to 25% capacity.

Carri Phillis, owner of Effex Nightclub in downtown Albuquerque, said she doesn’t have enough outdoor space to justify opening yet.

However, she said knowing that the state is preparing to fully reopen by the end of June is a huge relief.

"I’m excited. I mean, it’s one of those things where you wait for so long, and then today happens and I kind of had a panic attack," she said. "I was like, ‘oh my gosh, we got to figure it out.’"

Phillis also owns The Salt Yard, which has two locations in Albuquerque. She said work will begin to implement COVID-safe practices and bring back employees. Phillis anticipates announcing plans to reopen next week.