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Baker-Polito Administration Announces Statewide Rollback to Phase 3, Step 1

Posted on December 9, 2020


Yesterday the Baker-Polito Administration announced that effective Sunday, December 13th, all communities in Massachusetts, including Danvers, will return to Step 1 of Phase 3, of the Commonwealth’s reopening plan (see full announcement here). This will reduce indoor capacities across a broad range of sectors of the economy and tighten several other workplace restrictions. The Administration announced the roll-back to respond to an increase in new COVID-19 infections and hospitalizations since the Thanksgiving holiday that is straining the health care system in Massachusetts.

Effective December 13, all communities will roll back to Phase 3, Step 1 of Massachusetts’ re-opening plan, including the following restrictions:

  • Outdoor gatherings at event venues will be limited to no more than 50 people
  • Hosts of outdoor gatherings of greater than 25 people will be required to provide advance notice of the gathering their local board of health
  • Indoor theaters and performance venues and higher contact indoor recreation businesses will be required to close to the public
  • Outdoor theaters and performance venues will be limited to 25% capacity, and no more than 50 people

In all communities, capacity will be reduced from 50% to 40% for the following sectors:

  • Arcades/Indoor and Outdoor Recreational Businesses
  • Driving and Flight Schools
  • Gyms/Health Clubs
  • Libraries
  • Museums
  • Retail
  • Offices
  • Places of Worship
  • Lodging (common areas)
  • Golf facilities
  • Movie Theaters (Maximum 50 people per theater)

The Administration also announced new guidelines for restaurants and other venues with seated dining, including:

  • Patrons must wear masks at all times except when eating and drinking
  • Restaurants must seat no more than six patrons per table
  • Restaurants must impose a 90-minute time limit on tables
  • Musical performances at restaurants will no longer be permitted
  • Food court seating must be closed in malls

Customers are encouraged to dine only with members of the same household.

The Administration announced new guidelines for workplaces and gyms, including:

  • In offices, employees must wear masks at their place of work when not in their own workspace and alone
  • Employers are encouraged to close or limit the use of break rooms
  • Patrons must wear masks at all times in gyms

The Administration continues to encourage all employers to offer teleworking to their employees when possible.

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