DENVER – Governor Jared Polis provided an update on the state’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic today. Gov. Polis was joined by Sarah Tuneberg, Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment, and Brittany Bowlen, Denver Broncos to announce that the Broncos will have limited capacity starting on Sept. 27 when the Broncos square off against Tampa Bay.
“Colorado is Broncos Country and I know that everyone, including my family, has been eager to get back to football Sundays and I am thrilled to announce today that for the Denver Broncos’ game against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers on September 27, we will be allowing a limited number of fans to attend,” said Gov. Polis. “We are able to take this step due to Coloradans doing our part in wearing masks and avoiding large groups and the commitment and dedication of the Broncos to go above and beyond in putting together an experience for fans that is as safe as possible. As I’ve been saying all along, this virus isn’t going away any time soon and we’ve got to figure out a way to live with this virus.”
Capacity at the stadium will initially be limited to about 7.5% of the stadium capacity or approximately 5,700 fans. Due to its very large size, the stadium is set up as a series of outdoor events, all following the state’s outdoor event guidance. The state and the Broncos organization will continue working together to ensure the safety of fans and players is protected and they will together re-evaluate increasing fan attendance for future home games.
Every fan entering the stadium will be required to wear a mask and practice social distancing like they would in any other public place. Any fan who does not comply with mask-wearing guidelines or social distancing requirements will be required to leave the stadium. Tailgating is not permitted in parking lots and congregating in parking lots, concourses or the stadium bowl is prohibited.
The franchise will assign entry gates based on seat location and Broncos fans are asked to provide additional time in order to abide by social distancing requirements during the security process.
Fans should stay home if they are sick, showing any COVID-19 symptoms or if they have come in close contact with anyone who tested positive for COVID-19. Please visit one of the state’s free, quick and easy community testing sites to get tested for COVID-19.
The organization has set up safety enhancements at Empower Field at Mile High, staff will go through a health screening and temperature check, are required to wear PPE at all times, and Broncos staff will have gone through COVID-19 safety training. The Broncos have received this approval from the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment, per the public health order requiring professional sports to get any plans for spectators approved by the state. Other venues interested in taking a similar approach must apply for a variance in conjunction with their local health department.
Gov. Polis was joined by Sarah Tuneberg, Senior COVID-19 Advisory, and Innovation Response Team Leader, to announce a new partnership between the state of Colorado and Google and Apple that will leverage cutting-edge technology to help us slow the spread of COVID-19. It’s called Exposure Notification services that all Coloradans can opt-in to on their phone later this month. This mobile phone service will allow people to know if they might have been exposed to COVID without compromising their privacy or data. This is entirely optional. Privacy and security are at the core of the design of the service. The service will be offered to both iOs and Android users in Colorado. If someone opts-in, they can be notified if they’ve been exposed to the virus from another person also using the service.
The technology does not track location and does not share anyone’s identity with Google, Apple, other users, or the State. But, it can give an early heads up if someone using the service has been exposed to someone with COVID-19. Every Coloradan can make the individual choice if they’d like to use this service. Colorado is one of the first states in the country to deploy this technology. Read the frequently asked questions.
In addition, the governor announced that three counties would be moving into the Protect Our Neighbors level: Mesa, Gilpin, and Rio Blanco.
Gov. Polis today also took action in response to the COVID-19 pandemic, extending executive orders temporarily suspending certain statutes to maintain eligibility for Coloradans enrolled in Medicaid and the Children’s Basic Health Plan, providing assistance to residential and commercial tenants at risk for eviction, and ordering expedited unemployment insurance (UI) claim processing.