August 7, 2020
Today, the Administration announced new initiatives to stop the spread of COVID-19 and other important updates on the Commonwealth’s reopening. You can read details in the press release, while key components are highlighted below. I’ve also included resources and reminders on SBA programs for your reference.
REVISED GATHERINGS ORDER
Effective Tuesday, August 11, the Baker-Polito Administration will revise the Executive Order on gatherings to reduce the cap on outdoor gatherings from 100 to 50 individuals. The inside gathering limit will remain at 25 people. Please note: this will now apply to both public and private spaces. Read the revised Executive Order for more details.
PHASE III STEP 2 POSTPONED INDEFINITELY
Due to the recent increase in positive cases, Step 2 of Phase III of the Commonwealth’s reopening plan has been postponed indefinitely. Refer to the Order Authorizing the Reopening of Phase III Enterprises for a list of businesses in Phase III Step 2.
CHANGE TO RESTAURANT SECTOR-SPECIFIC PROTOCOLS
Restaurant protocols have been updated to state that alcoholic beverages may only be served for on-site consumption if accompanied by orders for food prepared on-site.
CROSS-AGENCY COVID ENFORCEMENT AND INTERVENTION TEAM
The Administration also announced a targeted cross-agency COVID Enforcement and Intervention Team that will be responsible for ramping up enforcement statewide and coordinating local intervention efforts at the local level in higher risk COVID-19 communities. Read more in the press release.
SMALL BUSINESS ADMINISTRATION UPDATES AND RESOURCES
- As you know, tomorrow (August 8) is the deadline for Paycheck Protection Program applications.
- The SBA released a PPP Forgiveness FAQ to support borrowers seeking loan forgiveness this week.
- The SBA Massachusetts District Office also released its Small Business Resource Guide, available online with tools and information to supports businesses in both business-as-usual and pandemic-related support.
- A reminder that SCORE, MSBDC, the Center for Women & Enterprise, and others offer virtual counseling and workshops to support small businesses; find an SBA Resource Partner here.
- If you have not done so already, sign up for Massachusetts District Office email updates, including information about upcoming sessions, here. (The August bulletin with scheduled events for the month is available here.)
From the beginning, we’ve said that every step of the Commonwealth’s reopening will be grounded in positive public health trends. As announced today, we’ve reached what, unchecked, could be an inflection point in the reopening and recovery process – and we all need to buckle down to hold the ground we’ve covered together.
Executive Office of Housing & Economic Development
The Commonwealth of Massachusetts
One Ashburton Place, Room 2101