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Anne Arundel County on reopening plans

Posted at 6:11 PM, Mar 10, 2021
and last updated 2021-03-10 18:11:43-05

ANNAPOLIS, Md. — "It came a little sooner than we would have expected," County Executive Steuart Pittman said, speaking about Governor Larry Hogan's orders to relax many COVID restrictions now in place.

Pittman says he could initiate a new executive order keeping tighter restrictions in place, but decided against that.

"We've tried that in the past, It's been difficult for the businesses, for the residents, for everybody to have different guidelines in different jurisdictions," he said.

Increases in the number of people vaccinated and case metrics trending better as of late made this decision easier.

Restaurant restrictions have been one of the more controversial subjects here in the county, now that capacities are going to 100% the County Executive does not see that as a problem.

"They're not above 50% now and restaurants still have their social distancing requirements and their table distancing requirements so they can't get to nowhere near 100% because of fire code. It ain't gonna happen."

With tables spread apart and no gathering at the bar, Pittman feels restaurants should be safe.

The county executive said he could implement a new order to restore some of the restrictions but he feels only one restriction will stay in place.

"Our plan is to only do that for the social gathering limits. We feel very strong that people should not be gathering in their homes having parties, more than 10 people. Even 10 people is even questionable."

As the end to this pandemic seems closer, Pittman wants to caution to our behaviors.

"We don't want people to think this is over. We don't want people to take off their mask, we want this distancing thing to continue and for people to be careful."