UPDATE: Anne Arundel County has weighed in and will not follow the Governor’s latest directive.
Governor Larry Hogan today marked the beginning of the state’s first-ever Maryland Restaurant Week by announcing expanded capacity for indoor dining.
Effective Monday, September 21 at 5:00 p.m., capacity for indoor operations at restaurants may increase from 50 to 75 percent, with appropriate distancing, and following strict public health requirements consistent with the CDC, FDA, and the National Restaurant Association. Read the governor’s order.
Earlier in the day, the governor visited McGarvey’s Saloon and Oyster Bar in Annapolis to present a proclamation recognizing Friday, September 18 through Sunday, September 27 as Maryland Restaurant Week. The governor spent time in several Annapolis Recovery Zones, where restaurants, bars, and shops have adopted creative solutions to get safely back to business.
“As we continue with the third and final stage of our recovery, I want to commend our state’s restaurant industry for their incredible resilience this year and for their continued commitment to the health and safety of Marylanders,” said Governor Hogan. “To celebrate the first-ever Maryland Restaurant Week, I encourage Marylanders to support their favorite local businesses, whether you do so through delivery, curbside pickup, or by dining indoors or outside.”
While local jurisdictions have observed individual restaurant weeks over the past decade, this is the very first statewide observance. There are no entry fees or course requirements, and restaurants may offer special menus, discounts, or other promotions. The Maryland Office of Tourism has contributed $50,000 in sponsorship to support the marketing efforts of the Restaurant Association of Maryland.
According to statistics announced today by the U.S. Department of Labor’s Bureau of Labor Statistics, the state’s Leisure and Hospitality sector experienced the most job growth in August with an increase of 5,800 jobs—4,000 of which belong to Accommodation and Food Services. Starting in May, when Governor Hogan announced Phase One of recovery and the safe resumption of outdoor dining, Leisure and Hospitality has added 65,900 jobs, 53,400 of which belong to Accommodation and Food Services. Overall, the state has gained 183,200 jobs during the recovery.
As with Stages One and Two, Stage Three continues to be implemented in multiple phases with a flexible, community-based approach where individual jurisdictions make decisions regarding the timing of reopenings.
Anne Arundel County has not moved into Stage 3 and remains in Stage 2. According to Rick Hutzell, Editor of The Capital, Anne Arundel County will not follow the Governor at this point.
oops. They said no, John.
— Rick Hutzell (@HutzellRick) September 18, 2020