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Full details from Governor Hogan on moving to Stage 2

| June 03, 2020, 05:23 PM

Rams Head

Governor Larry Hogan began his press conference today with comments on the death of George Floyd and the peaceful protests in Baltimore City, as well as the Maryland primary election.

On The Death of George Floyd and Peaceful Protests in Baltimore City: 

“I want to begin by taking a moment to address the senseless murder of George Floyd, which has served as yet another reminder that we still have a long way to go to live up to our nation’s highest ideals. In recent days, protests have been held in cities across America, including in Baltimore City, where thousands of young people and community leaders have expressed their frustrations peacefully while working together with law enforcement to stand up to and help stop a small group of people with a violent agenda.

“As one Baltimore activist said, ‘We won’t let outside agitators tell the story of Baltimore.’ I’m proud that during this difficult time, Baltimore City has set an example for the rest of America, and I want to thank Mayor Jack Young, Commissioner Harrison, the Baltimore City Police Department, the Maryland State Police, the MTA and MDTA police, along with the citizen soldiers of the Maryland National Guard. Most importantly, I want to thank the residents of Baltimore, who are showing the power of a strong, compassionate, and united community.”

Content Continues Below

Rams Head

On The Maryland Primary Election:

“I also want to address what we all saw yesterday and over the past months from the State Board of Elections regarding the problems with the primary election, the fact that thousands of Marylanders either did not receive their ballots or received erroneous or late ballots—all of which is completely unacceptable. The most basic responsibility of the State Board of Elections is ensuring that free and fair elections are conducted accurately.

“There were obviously significant failures, there are questions that need to be answered, which is why we are calling on the SBE Administrator to prepare a full and complete report to me, the Board of Public Works, the Secretary of State, the presiding officers of the Maryland General Assembly, and to the public, no later than July 3.

“I am also requesting that the Maryland General Assembly immediately begin oversight hearings to determine what caused the failures and how they can be corrected. I want to assure you that we are going to take whatever actions are necessary to make sure that those responsible correct these problems in order to safeguard our democratic process, and ensure that the November election is free of these failures and these issues.”

On Stage 2:

Governor Larry Hogan announced that Maryland will begin to move into Stage Two of the ‘Maryland Strong: Roadmap to Recovery,’ with a safe and gradual reopening of workplaces and businesses, along with additional personal services. This comes after the state’s positivity rate dropped to single digits, and total current hospitalizations fell to their lowest level in more than seven weeks.

As with Stage One, Stage Two will be implemented with a flexible, community-based approach that empowers individual jurisdictions to make decisions regarding the timing of re-openings. All 24 of the state’s jurisdictions have now entered Stage One.

“Moving into Stage Two is an important step forward for our state after what has been a very difficult period,” said Governor Hogan. “The people of our great state have endured so many significant personal, medical, and economic challenges. But in the face of the most daunting challenge in our lifetime, the people of Maryland have been resilient, they’ve never lost hope, and they are showing what it truly means to be Maryland strong.”

NEW UNIVERSITY OF MARYLAND SCHOOL OF MEDICINE LAB FULLY OPERATIONAL FOR COVID TESTING. The governor also announced today that, as part of the state’s long-term testing strategy, the University of Maryland School of Medicine’s Institute for Genome Sciences clinical lab is now fully operational and beginning to process COVID-19 tests, including the tests the state acquired from South Korea. In April, the governor announced an initial $2.5 million investment in partnership with the University of Maryland, Baltimore to launch this large-scale testing initiative. This signature, state-of-the-art lab will be the backbone of the state’s sustained testing strategy, pre-positioning the state for any second wave and the coming flu season.

STAGE TWO BEGINS FRIDAY, JUNE 5 AT 5:00 PM:

To begin Stage Two, Governor Hogan announced that he will be lifting the order requiring the closure of non-essential businesses. The list of open businesses in Maryland will include manufacturing, construction, large and small retail shops, speciality vendors, wholesalers, warehouses, and offices including information technology firms, legal offices, accounting, banking and financial institutions, insurance agencies, design studios, advertising and architectural firms, and media production companies. Read the governor’s order here.

Additionally, real estate offices, travel agencies, auto dealer showrooms, bank branches and various other offices may all safely reopen with public health and safety guidance recommendations in place. This guidance includes:

  • Wearing face coverings whenever face-to-face interaction takes place.
  • Conducting temperature checks for workers and other personnel.
  • Limiting the proximity of employees by rotating employee hours.
  • Instituting split schedules, shifts, or shorter work weeks.
  • Staggering start, break, or shift times.

Employees who can telework should continue to do so whenever possible.

ADDITIONAL PERSONAL SERVICES. Additional personal services including nail salons, massage therapists, tanning salons, and tattoo parlors may resume operations at up to 50 percent capacity, by appointment only, and with appropriate health and safety guidelines.

REOPENING OF STATE GOVERNMENT. Maryland state government will also begin returning to more normal operations on Monday, June 8. The Motor Vehicle Administration and other customer-facing agencies will begin reopening select branches to customers on a limited basis by appointment only. Staff will be required to wear face coverings and will have plexiglass dividers at each station. With more Marylanders back to work, transit will begin to return to a more normal schedule and the Maryland State Department of Education will continue with its gradual plan to reopen child care centers.

REOPENING GUIDANCE. As additional industries and activities begin to resume, the Maryland Department of Commerce continues to develop and issue guidance and best practices to help businesses reopen safely. These resources are available at open.maryland.gov/backtobusiness.

NEXT STEPS. State officials and the Maryland Coronavirus Recovery Team will continue to watch the data closely, and if encouraging trends continue, the next step, likely coinciding with the end of the school year, will be to consider opening additional amusement, fitness, sporting, and other summertime activities.

Visit governor.maryland.gov/recovery for more information about the ‘Maryland Strong: Roadmap to Recovery.’

Rams Head

Category: COVID, Local News, NEWS, Post To FB

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