UPDATE: County Executive Johnny Olszewski has requested Maryland National Guard support in Baltimore County.
Original story below…
ANNAPOLIS, MD—Governor Larry Hogan held a press conference on Monday morning in which he announced further efforts to address the ongoing coronavirus pandemic.
Governor Hogan is ordering the closure of all non-essential businesses effective at 5 p.m. on Monday.
This is not a shelter-in-place order, however residents are encouraged to stay home as much as possible. Anyone who doesn’t need to leave their neighborhood should stay at home.
“Let me be clear, we are not issuing or ordering a shelter-in-place directive, or forcing people to stay home,” said Governor Hogan. “However, we are telling all Marylanders to follow all of the directives. Unless there is an essential reason to leave home, stay home.”
Additional information on the closure of non-essential Maryland businesses can be found here.
Maryland officials will be using federal guidelines to determine what qualifies as an essential business that remains open.
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Additionally, Governor Hogan is announcing a $175 million economic relief package for Maryland small businesses and workers.
The Maryland Department of Commerce will offer up to $125 million in loans and grants to small businesses and nonprofits through the Maryland Small Business COVID-19 Emergency Relief Fund.
This includes a $75 million loan fund and a $50 million grant fund, with $1 million in grants dedicated to non-profits, will provide working capital to be used for payroll, rent, fixed-debt payments and other mission critical cash operating costs.
Businesses and nonprofits with under 50 full- and part-time employees will be eligible, and loans will range up to $50,000 and grants up to $10,000.
Governor Hogan has allocated $5 million and the Maryland Department of Labor has allocated $2 million to collaboratively launch the COVID-19 Layoff Aversion Fund.
A total of $7 million in funds will be available to provide flexible rapid response services to proactively support businesses and workers undergoing economic stresses due to COVID-19.
More information on these resources is available at https://businessexpress.maryland.gov/.
Governor Hogan has signed an emergency order to protect families from price gouging on everyday household items and essentials. Retailers who attempt to exploit this crisis will be prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law.
As part of Maryland’s hospital surge plan, Governor Hogan has ordered the establishment of an Alternate Care site at Baltimore Convention Center and Hilton Hotel. This will be a joint partnership in collaboration with UMMS and Hopkins.
The governor has asked FEMA to deliver 250 beds and 50 bed packages to support the initiative.
As part of the governor’s hospital surge plan, the University of Maryland Medical System has agreed to reopen Laurel Hospital, which will make another 135 beds available.
Governor Hogan has directed the Maryland National Guard and the Maryland Department of Health to collaborate with Prince George’s County and the University of Maryland Medical System on a pilot assessment location at FedEx Field in Landover.
The governor has enacted an emergency order to authorize a fast-track process to bring more testing capacity online without FDA approval, dramatically shortening a process that would ordinarily take several months.
The Maryland Department of Health is issuing an order requiring health care providers to prioritize tests for hospitalized and chronic care patients, symptomatic first responders, and symptomatic nursing home patients.
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