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Maryland Update: Governor Hogan Announces Additional COVID-19 Restrictions

Just one week after ordering new business restrictions to combat the recent surge of COVID-19, Governor Larry Hogan announced further mitigation measures in Maryland that will dial back business operations.

On November 17, 2020, Governor Hogan issued Executive Order 20-11-17-01, which amends and restates Executive Order 20-11-10-01 (which we previously summarized here).  The amended order goes into effect at 5:00 p.m. on Friday, November 20, 2020.

The amended order, titled “Regulating Certain Businesses and Facilities and Generally Requiring Use of Face Coverings,” has the greatest impact on restaurants and other foodservice establishments (which now includes banquet and catering halls).  In addition to reducing indoor dining to only 50% of the establishment’s maximum capacity, bars and restaurants will not be permitted to stay open for indoor dining or serve alcohol after 10:00 p.m.—although they may continue carry-out and delivery service.

In addition, racetracks, outdoor entertainment venues, and sports stadiums will be limited to 250 persons regardless of its size.  Notably, the Secretary of Health no longer has the authority to grant waivers for stadium occupancy limits.  Religious facilities and retail establishments may not exceed 50% of maximum occupancy, and individuals may now remove face coverings to verify their identity for bona fide security purposes.  All other provisions of the prior order remain in place.

The amended order does not interfere with the more stringent restrictions in Montgomery and Prince George’s Counties.  Employers operating elsewhere should determine whether their local jurisdiction has published orders more restrictive than the statewide mandate.

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Epstein Becker & Green, P.C., continues to monitor developments in the DMV and throughout the country.  Readers may contact the authors or their EBG attorney with any questions or needs for assistance in operational compliance or addressing any other COVID-19-related issue.