Governor says it’s a further to help stop the spread of the coronavirus.
Annapolis, Md (KM). Governor Larry Hogan has taken some strong measures to help reduce the spread of the coronavirus in Maryland. “This morning, I have enacted an executive order which closes all non-essential businesses, organizations, establishments and facilities in Maryland, ” the Chief Executive said in a news conference on Monday in Annapolis. .
The Governor says some of the businesses, organizations, associations and establishments which can stay open during the coronavirus emergency are “health care and food, agriculture, energy, public works, community-based government operations, and the defense and the industrial-base sectors, law enforcement, public safety, transportation, critical manufacturing, financial services and water and wastewater.”
Among those essential businesses are grocery stores, pharmacies, laundromats, dry cleaners, janitorial firms, self-storage facilities, convenience stores, liquor stores, law firms, bail bonds and the courts.
Some of the businesses which have previously been ordered closed by the Governor include casinos, racetracks, simulcast betting facilities, enclosed malls, gyms, restaurants, bars, except for carryout, take out and delivery services.
Governor Hogan also says he’s seen too many people in large crowds who are not taking the COVID-19 emergency seriously He’s strongly encouraging them to take heed of the crisis. “Because of this irresponsible and reckless behavior, beginning today, even further and more aggressive enforcement actions will be taken by state and local authorities to disperse these gatherings,”: he said.
Last week, the Governor issued an executive order banning gatherings of more than ten people. “Let me repeat once again as strongly as I possibly can: if you are enraged in this type of activity, you are breaking the law, and you are literally endangering the lives of your family, your friends and your fellow citizens,” he said.
But he says he’s not issuing a shelter-in-place order. “And we are telling you unless you have an essential reason to leave your house, you should stay in your homes,” the Governor says.
As part of his news conference, Governor Hogan announced a $175-million relief packages to assist small businesses, employees and non-profits which have been negatively impacted by the coronavirus pandemic. “This will bring together resources from two of our key state agencies; the Maryland Department of Commerce and the Maryland Department of Labor to help hard-pressed Marylanders and small businesses, to help them get through this difficult period,” he says
Hogan says the state’s unemployment insurance program is “ramped up” to help those who need it. “If you’ve been laid off, you can immediately file a claim, by phone, or e-mail or by submitting an application on line,” he says. “Unlike other states, Maryland has no waiting period whatsoever. So claims can be filed right away, immediately.”
“Today’s action of closing non-essential businesses is to protect the health of Marylanders and to save lives,” Governor Hogan says.
By Kevin McManus