Dona Ana restaurant capacity increased to 75 percent, La Posta struggles to staff for Cinco De Mayo

Las Cruces News

LAS CRUCES, N.M. (KTSM) — Dona Ana County moved from green to turquoise on the state’s COVID-19 color chart on Wednesday, which means restaurants can operate at 75-percent capacity.

The owner of La Posta, a restaurant in Mesilla, said that he’s thrilled to be open this Cinco De Mayo.

“We were crying last year on Cinco De Mayo, we were shut down — curbside only,” said owner Tom Hutchinson.

However, even though he can operate at 75-percent capacity, he doesn’t have enough servers to wait tables, saying he can only staff enough people to open at 25-percent capacity.

“I have seven servers on my floor today. I’m normally staffed with about 18 on Cinco De Mayo. So we’re just not able to accommodate the crowds,” said Hutchinson.

Fewer servers mean long waits to be seated, but some La Posta customers told KTSM 9 News they don’t mind the wait.

“Well it’s going to take time for staff to come back up,” said Martin Mark Maese. “I have to understand and be patient.”

Las Cruces resident Leland Harty said he’s happy that he can actually dine inside a restaurant this Cinco De Mayo.

“Happy to be able to be out, spend some time with friends, have a couple of cocktails, enjoy myself — some little resemblance of normalcy,” said Harty.

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