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COVID-19 Coronavirus Updates and Guidance

The County is taking a number of actions to keep residents safe and minimize the spread of COVID-19. Find status information for County operations and services.

Baltimore County News

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Keyword: be safe to stay safe

State Laws and Guidelines Will Continue To Be Strictly Enforced

Baltimore County Executive Johnny Olszewski today announced that Baltimore County will continue alignment with state actions, which will allow operations at restaurants to increase from 50 to 75 percent capacity, with appropriate distancing, and following strict public health requirements consistent with the CDC, FDA, and the National Restaurant Association, effective Monday, September 21 at 5 p.m.

Governor Hogan’s Executive Order is available here (PDF).

According to State metrics, Baltimore County’s positivity rate is currently 2.3 percent—a reduction of 81 percent since May 29, 2020.

County Executive Olszewski released the following statement:

“Baltimore County continues to see progress in major health metrics as we have gradually and safely reopened our economy. While we are continuing to align with the state, we cannot let our guard down.

In Baltimore County, we’re focused on getting our kids back in school, which requires all of us to do our part to slow the spread of this virus. We have to Be Safe to Stay Safe by wearing face coverings and socially distancing—especially while indoors—to protect ourselves and our loved ones.

This dangerous disease is still with us and we must continue to follow public health guidance. We know that COVID-19 spreads more easily indoors than outdoors, so as we move forward today, we continue to urge residents to prioritize less risky activities in their support of restaurants, such as carry-out and outdoor dining.

In the days and weeks ahead, we will continue to strictly enforce state and local ordinances—any businesses found to be violating face-covering or social distancing mandates will be held accountable.

As with every step we have taken, we will continue to monitor this situation and will do whatever is necessary to protect public health. We're still in this together and can only get through this together.”

Face Coverings Still Required

Under state and local order, individuals ages five and up are required to wear face coverings in any indoor business, service, organization or establishment that serves the general public.

This includes, but is not limited to, retail establishments, recreational establishments, theaters, houses of worship and other locations open to the public.

Individuals ages five and up are required to wear face coverings when outdoors and unable to consistently maintain at least six feet of distance from individuals who are not members of their household.

Individuals are not required to wear a mask if eating or drinking while seated. In accordance with Governor Hogan’s orders, face coverings are still required when otherwise moving in or about a restaurant or bar premises.


State Laws and Guidelines Will Continue to be Strictly Enforced

Baltimore County Executive Johnny Olszewski today announced that, effective Friday, September 4, at 5 p.m., Baltimore County will align with state actions to begin moving into a modified Stage Three plan, which will allow enclosed and outdoor theaters to reopen and retail and religious facilities to expand indoor capacity.

Governor Hogan’s Executive order is available here (PDF).

County Executive Olszewski released the following statement:

“Baltimore County has taken significant steps to combat the COVID-19 pandemic while gradually and safely reopening our economy. Thanks to our efforts, and the efforts of County residents to protect themselves and their loved ones, we’ve seen continued progress.

I’ve consistently said that a patchwork approach to reopening only confuses residents, puts businesses who are just miles apart on unequal playing fields, and limits the public health impact of any individual jurisdiction’s decisions. By continuing to align with the state, Baltimore County is providing clarity for our residents—though these steps do not mean we can let our guard down.

It’s critical that we all continue to do everything we can to slow the spread of this virus. That means following the science which says wearing face coverings and socially distancing wherever possible are still our best tools in the fight against COVID-19. We have to Be Safe to Stay Safe to protect ourselves and our loved ones.

This dangerous disease is still with us and I urge all our residents and businesses to continue to follow the best public health guidance. In the days and weeks ahead, we will continue to strictly enforce state laws and guidelines—any businesses found to be violating face-covering or social distancing mandates, will be held accountable.

As with every step we have taken, we will continue to monitor this situation and will not hesitate to do whatever is necessary to protect the public’s health. We're still in this together and can only get through this together.”

According to State metrics, Baltimore County’s positivity rate has remained below five percent since July 7, 2020, and is currently 4.4 percent—a reduction of a 67 percent reduction since May 29, 2020.

Baltimore County’s case rate is 1,800 cases per 100,000 residents—35 percent lower than Prince George’s County, 22 percent lower than Baltimore City and two percent lower than Montgomery County.

Under Governor Hogan and Secretary Neil’s latest orders:

  • Indoor theaters may operate up to 50 percent capacity or 100 people, whichever is lower. State reopening guidance for theaters is available here (PDF).
  • Outdoor entertainment venues may operate up to 50 percent capacity or 250 people, whichever is lower.
  • All retail establishments and religious facilities may now operate up to 75 percent capacity.

Under the state order, indoor dining at food service establishments remains limited up to 50 percent capacity.

Face Coverings Still Required

Under state and local order, individuals ages five and up are required to wear face coverings in any indoor business, service, organization or establishment that serves the general public. This includes, but is not limited to, retail establishments, recreational establishments, theaters, houses of worship and other locations open to the public.

Individuals ages five and up are required to wear face coverings when outdoors and unable to consistently maintain at least six feet of distance from individuals who are not members of their household.

Individuals are not required to wear a mask if eating or drinking while seated. In accordance with Governor Hogan’s orders, face coverings are still required when otherwise moving in or about a restaurant or bar premises.

Baltimore County Expanding Enforcement Efforts

To date, Baltimore County has already issued notices to multiple bars and restaurants across Baltimore County for violation of state COVID-19 requirements. County officials continue to regularly inspect establishments for compliance and are currently in the process of hiring additional staff to further enhance the County’s ongoing response efforts.


Campaign to Highlight Ravens’ Calais Campbell, Orioles Legend Brooks Robinson, Health Leader Dr. Leana Wen to Convey Simple Message Aimed at Slowing the Spread

Baltimore County Executive Johnny Olszewski today announced the “Be Safe to Stay Safe” campaign, a public health and education initiative aimed at encouraging residents to properly wear masks and follow other key hygiene practices to slow the spread of COVID-19 and save lives.

The campaign, which features Baltimore Ravens defensive lineman and five-time Pro Bowl player Calais Campbell, Orioles Hall of Fame Third Baseman, Brooks Robinson, national public health expert Dr. Leana Wen, and local radio personalities, includes a series of announcements being aired throughout the region on local television and radio stations, as well as social media outreach.

Be Safe to Stay Safe. Practice social distancing and wear a mask in public places.

 

“The science is clear: face coverings are one of our best tools in the fight against COVID-19. We have to do everything we can to slow the spread of this virus and our “Be Safe to Stay Safe” campaign will convey this simple message to educate, inform and protect County residents,” said County Executive Johnny Olszewski. “I want to thank all those who have added their voices to this new effort. Together we can continue to take the necessary steps to protect ourselves and our loved ones. Remember, Be Safe to Stay Safe, Baltimore County!”

Campaign Begins Today

Beginning today, the campaign will air on Baltimore-area broadcast and radio stations—including Orioles and Ravens broadcasts—as well as billboards throughout the County, MTA buses and light rail cars, as well as on social media and other digital platforms.

“Our African-American and Latinx communities have been hardest hit by this virus,” said Baltimore County Health Officer Dr. Gregory Wm. Branch. “This effort will emphasize the importance of using face coverings, social distancing and avoiding large gatherings to help slow the spread among our neighbors that continue to be disproportionately affected by the pandemic.”

In the coming days, the “Be Safe to Stay Safe” campaign will be posting signage at County-owned properties and facilities as well as displaying signage, table-tents, and more at restaurants and businesses in partnership with local Chambers of Commerce.

Additionally, Baltimore County will be distributing 10,000 facemasks to residents to promote public awareness about the risks of COVID-19 and help protect our residents by providing facial coverings to keep them and others safe.

For more information on COVID-19 resources, please visit the Coronavirus Updates and Guidance page.

Ways to Watch

Watch the “Be Safe to Stay Safe” video clip on YouTube.


 
 
Revised September 11, 2017