ANNAPOLIS — Governor Larry Hogan directed local leaders to step up enforcement of public health requirements in bars and restaurants across the state.
State health officials have connected an increasing number of COVID-19 cases to non-compliance with face covering and physical distancing rules.
“The vast majority of bars and restaurants in our state are in compliance, but some are flagrantly violating the law and endangering public health,” said Governor Hogan. “You have the responsibility to enforce these laws. Violators should be warned, fined, have actions taken regarding their licenses, or closed if necessary. Local health departments, local liquor boards and inspectors, and local law enforcement agencies must work together to ensure public health is protected.”
As of July 14, the positivity rate among Marylanders under 35 is now 84% higher than it is for Marylanders 35 and over.
In recent weeks, at least 12 other states have moved to re-close bars and restaurants statewide or in targeted localities following COVID-19 spikes and outbreaks.
“Our continued economic health and recovery depend on the active and aggressive local compliance and enforcement of these critical public health measures,” said Gov. Hogan. “We cannot allow a small segment of willful violators to squander the collective efforts of the overwhelming majority of Maryland citizens and businesses.”
The state continues working to further increase the convenience and accessibility of COVID-19 resources and testing.