As a result of improved COVID-19 health metrics across the state, Governor Hogan announced yesterday that Maryland will begin to move into Stage Three of the ‘Maryland Strong: Roadmap to Recovery’ with additional safe and gradual reopenings. Stage Three will be implemented in multiple phases with a flexible, community-based approach that empowers individual jurisdictions to make decisions regarding the timing of reopenings.
As part of the state’s initial entry into Stage Three, Governor Hogan announced the following additional safe and gradual reopenings that will take effect Friday, September 4 at 5 p.m.:
INDOOR THEATERS: Indoor theaters where live performances occur or motion pictures are shown may open to the general public at 50% capacity, or 100 people per auditorium—whichever is less—with appropriate health and safety protocols in place.
OUTDOOR VENUES: Outdoor venues where live performances occur or motion pictures are shown outdoors may open to the general public at 50% capacity, or 250 people—whichever is less—with appropriate health and safety protocols in place.
RETAIL AND RELIGIOUS FACILITIES: Capacity for retail establishments and religious facilities may increase from 50 to 75 percent.
SCHOOLS: The governor thanked the State Board of Education for voting to require those school systems that have not developed a plan for returning any students for any in person instruction until 2021 to reevaluate their reopening plans by the end of the first quarter.
Last week, the governor announced that, as a result of improved COVID-19 health metrics, every county school system in Maryland is authorized to begin safely reopening, but made clear that the legal authority and final decision making on safe openings rests with county boards of education. Guidance to support the safe reopening of schools can be found here.