Massachusetts To Transition to Phase IV of Reopening Plan March 22

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The following is a press release by the Governor’s office submitted to SOURCE media.

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BOSTON — Today, March 18 the Baker-Polito Administration announced that Massachusetts will advance to Step 1 of Phase IV of the Commonwealth’s reopening plan on Monday, March 22.

The Administration continues to take steps to reopen the Commonwealth’s economy with public health metrics continuing to trend in a positive direction. This includes drops in average daily COVID cases and hospitalizations. Massachusetts also continues to be a national leader in vaccination rates.

The Administration also replaced the Massachusetts Travel Order originally issued in July 2020 with a Travel Advisory, effective March 22. 

On March 1, Massachusetts loosened capacity restrictions for several industries and advanced to Step 2 of Phase III of the reopening plan. Since then, hospitalizations dropped by 20% and deaths dropped by 24%.

The seven day average of new cases in long-term care facilities dropped by 53%. The positive test rate remains below 2% and has been for several weeks now. The seven day average of new cases is also down over this time by 7%. 

Effective Monday, March 22, all communities in Massachusetts will move into Step 1 of Phase IV of the state’s reopening plan.

This will open a range of previously closed business sectors under tight capacity restrictions that are expected to be adjusted over time if favorable trends in the public health data continue. Effective on the planned advancement to Step 1 of Phase IV, the following large capacity sports and entertainment venues will be permitted to operate at a strict 12% capacity limit after submitting a plan to the Department of Public Health (DPH):

  • Indoor and outdoor stadiums
  • Arenas
  • Ballparks

Also effective on March 22, gathering limits for event venues and in public settings will increase to 100 people indoors and 150 people outdoors. Outdoor gatherings at private residences and in private backyards will remain at a maximum of 25 people, with indoor house gatherings remaining at 10 people.

Additionally, dance floors will be permitted at weddings and other events only, and overnight summer camps will be allowed to operate this coming summer. Exhibition and convention halls may also begin to operate, following gatherings limits and event protocols.

Other Phase IV sectors must continue to remain closed.

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