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Vermont: State-by-State COVID-19 Guidance

VERMONT

February 25, 2021:

On February 25, 2021, the Vermont Department of Public Health announced that Vermonters age 65 and older can start making appointments as of February 25 to receive their COVID-19 vaccinations at Walgreens locations. Statewide clinics for this age group which will begin taking appointments March 1.

February 23, 2021:

On February 23, 2021, the Vermont Department of Public Health announced new gathering guidelines for individuals who have been fully vaccinated. To be considered fully vaccinated, two weeks must have passed since the individual’s final dose of the vaccine. This updated guidance allows vaccinated individuals to gather with one other household.

February 22, 2021:

On February 22, 2021, the Vermont Department of Public Health announced a change in travel policy for individuals who have been fully vaccinated against COVID-19. According to the update, fully vaccinated people who travel to and from Vermont will no longer need to quarantine, effective Tuesday, February 23. To be considered fully vaccinated, travelers must have received the final dose at least two weeks before travel and must be prepared to present proof of vaccination, such as the federally issued card received during vaccination.

February 15, 2021:

On February 15, 2021, Governor Scott signed Addendum 11 to Amended and Restarted Executive Order 01-20, which extended Order 01-20 through March 15, 2021. The directives set forth in Addendum 10 remain unchanged.

On February 12, 2021, the Vermont Department of Public Health announced that Vermonters age 70 and older will be able to book an appointment for their COVID-19 vaccine starting February 16, 2021.

February 1, 2021:

The Vermont Department of Public Health announced that vaccination sites will be open for those who are eligible for a vaccine beginning on February 2, 2021.

January 25, 2021:

On January 22, the Vermont Department of Public Health announced the launch of a new web page where Vermonters age 75 and older will be able to book an appointment for their COVID-19 vaccine, starting Monday, Jan 25.

January 11, 2021:

On December 15, Governor Scott signed Addendum 9 to Amended and Restarted Executive Order 01-20, which extended Order 01-20 through January 15, 2021. The directives set forth in Addendum 8 remain unchanged.

On November 20, Governor Scott extended the Amended and Restated Executive Order 01-20, i.e., the State of Emergency Declaration, through December 15. All other directives under Addendum 8 remained unchanged.

November 16, 2020:

On November 13, Governor Scott signed Addendum 8 to the Amended and Restated Executive Order 01-20. This new order extended all directives imposed under 01-20 to December 15, 2020. More specifically, the new order implemented the following restrictions effective November 14 at 10:00 p.m.:

  • Social gatherings involving multiple households are suspended. These include holiday parties and birthday celebrations.
  • Restaurants (1st Class Licensees) must close for in-person dining by 10:00 p.m. Please note curbside pickup, delivery, and take out may continue past 10:00 p.m.
  • Bars and social clubs (2nd and 4th class licenses) must close for in-person consumption of food and beverages but can offer curbside pickup, delivery, and takeout of food and beverages, including alcohol.
  • Youth and adult recreational sporting events are suspended, including practices.
  • All businesses must reinstate telework to the maximum extent possible.

November 10, 2020:

On November 10, Governor Scott announced a 14-day quarantine mandate (or 7 days with a negative COVID-19 test) for non-essential travel. The mandate applies to residents who travel outside the state and visitors upon entering the state. Essential travel is defined as travel for the purposes of attending school, college, or work, seeking personal safety or medical care for self or others, parental custody/visitation, or obtaining food, beverage, or medications. Governor Scott also reiterated his recommendations for social gatherings to be limited to 10 people from trusted households.

November 5, 2020:

On October 15, 2020: Governor Phil Scott issued Addendum 6 to the state’s COVID-19 State of Emergency order, extending it until November 15, 2020. On October 16, 2020, Scott issued Addendum 7 to the State of Emergency order, limiting the ability of ice rinks within the state to take any additional reservations for use between October 16-30, 2020.

September 15, 2020:

On Friday, September 11, Governor Scott signed into order Addendum 5 to Amended and Restated Executive Order 01-20. Addendum 5 simply extended the expiration date of Executive Order 1-20 to October 15, 2020. The order was previously set to expire on September 15, pursuant to Addendum 4. All other provisions of Addendum 4 remain in full force and effect.

As a reminder, Governor Scott passed the Amended and Restarted Executive Order 01-20 on June 15, 2020.

The new order also clarified mask use during strenuous activity—a face mask or covering is not required when someone engaging in strenuous exercise or activity can maintain a physical distance of six (6) feet from others.

August 26, 2020:

On August 26, Governor Scott announced the Agency of Education will provide Vermont schools with personal protective equipment (PPE) before the start of school on September 8. Specifically, the state will provide school nurses with gloves, surgical masks, face shields, and hand sanitizer. These kits will be provided to schools free of charge.

August 19, 2020:

On August 18, Governor Scott announced an increase to the maximum grant award for Economic Recovery Grants for Vermont businesses negatively impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic. Now, businesses in eligible industries (lodging, retail, hospitality, arts, travel, and event facility sectors with continued capacity constraints) can receive up to an additional $100,000 in grant funding, for a total of $150,000 from the program. The increased maximum award is available both to new applicants to the program and to those businesses that have already received a $50,000 grant. More information can be found at the Economic Recovery Grant Program website.

August 18, 2020:

On August 18, Governor Scott signed Addendum 4 to Amended and Restated Executive Order 01-20. The intent of this rule is to clarify an exception for remote learning that is consistent with the policy intent of the exceptions afforded by 33 V.S.A. § 3511(7), which allows exceptions for school closing days, snow days and vacation days. This clarification will result in an increase in school age full-time child care capacity statewide. “Family child care home” means a child care facility which provides care on a regular basis in the caregiver's own residence for not more than 10 children at any one time. Of this number, up to six children may be provided care on a full-time basis and the remainder on a part-time basis. As used in this subdivision, care of a child on a part-time basis shall mean care of a school-age child for not more than four hours. Gov. Scott also delegated to the Secretary of Agency of Human Services such further authority to undertake measures to expand the State’s capacity for school-age child care.

August 10, 2020:

On August 7, Governor Scott announced a new grant program to help mitigate operational expenses and losses for child care providers impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic. The Operational Relief Grant (ORG) program includes $12 million in federal Coronavirus Relief Funding to help child care programs offset pandemic-related expenses and losses. Grant applications are open now through August 26 and award notices are anticipated by September 11. Eligible applicants include child care and afterschool programs, summer day camps, parent child centers and agencies that serve as fiscal agents for local Children’s Integrated Services.

August 6, 2020:

On July 30, Governor Scott issued an Executive Order to set Tuesday, September 8 as the universal start date for student instruction. The purpose of this action is to give schools additional time to prepare their systems and staff. After discussions with health experts, Governor Scott encouraged districts to work towards expanding the number of in-person instruction days, but recognized that many are beginning with a hybrid approach.

On July 30, 2020 Governor Scott announced a Hazard Pay Grant Program established in Act 136 of 2020. Employers in public safety, public health, and health care and human services whose employees worked to help mitigate or respond to COVID-19 may apply for hazard pay grant funds for their employees. Grants will be awarded through an online application process and funds will be distributed on a first-come, first-served basis until the Program’s $28 million in funding is allocated. Covered employers may request funding to provide $1,200 or $2,000 in hazard pay to each employee who meets the below eligibility requirements:

  • Is employed by a covered employer that has applied for a grant through the Program
  • Performs a job that had an elevated risk of exposure to COVID-19 during the period of March 13, 2020 to May 15, 2020.
  • Was unable to perform his or her job remotely or to telework
  • Except in the case of employees of home health agencies and nursing homes, earns an hourly base wage of $25 or less
  • Worked at least 68 hours from March 13, 2020 to May 15, 2020 in order to be eligible for the $1,200 grant, and 216 hours to be eligible for the $2,000 grant.
  • Is not eligible to receive monetary benefits for the performance of his or her job under any program authorized or implemented by the federal government.

Governor Scott also announced on July 30 expanded eligibility for Economic Recovery Grants for Vermont businesses negatively impacted by COVID-19. Under the original eligibility criteria, a business was required to have at least one W-2 employee who was not an owner of the business. Beginning August 3, the one W-2 employee may be an owner of the business. Businesses that originally chose not to apply, or already applied and were deemed ineligible and believe they may be eligible under these new criteria, are encouraged to contact the Department of Taxes at 802-828-6611 or the ACCD at 802-828-1200.

July 27, 2020:

On Friday July 24, Governor Scott announced strengthened mask requirements through the enactment of Addendum 2 to Amended and Restarted Executive Order No. 01-20. The amendment, effective August 1, 2020, requires everyone to wear masks or other cloth facial coverings any time it is not possible to maintain a physical distance of at least six feet from someone outside of their household. This Addendum shall continue in full force and effect until midnight on August 15, 2020, at which time the Governor, in consultation with the Vermont Department of Health and the Department of Public Safety, shall assess the emergency and determine whether to amend or extend this Addendum. As a reminder, the Amended and Restarted Executive Order No. 01-20 required the commuting public to wear facial coverings over their nose and mouth when using public transportation conveyances, including busses, trains, and ride services and when in a mass transportation stations or terminals, including airports. In other instances, it had encouraged, but not required, Vermonters to wear facial coverings over their nose and mouth any time they interacted with others from outside their households, Similarly, businesses and non-profit and government entities previously could require, but were not mandated to require, customers or clients to wear masks.

As before, exceptions exist for those engaging in a strenuous exercise or activity, those under the age of 2, those with a medical or developmental condition that is complicated by a facial covering, and those with difficulty breathing. A person who declines to wear a mask or cloth face covering because of a medical or developmental issue, or difficulty breathing, shall not be required to produce documentation, or other evidence, verifying the condition.

Businesses and other entities shall implement measures notifying customers or clients of the requirement to wear masks or facial coverings. This may include, but is not limited to, requiring customers to wear masks, having signage explaining mask requirements, and denying entry or service to those who decline to wear masks.

Guidelines set forth by the Secretary of the Agency of Commerce and Community Development (ACCD) continue to apply, such as permitting limited alternatives to face masks in limited workplace settings, such as in the case of retail cashiers, where translucent shields or “sneeze guards” are acceptable in lieu of a mask.

July 15, 2020:

Governor Scott announced an extension of the State of Emergency initially set to expire on July 15, 2020. The amendment extends the State of Emergency in full force until midnight on August 15, 2020 unless extended thereafter and clarifies the emergency feeding operation includes certain vulnerable populations. The executive order continues to implement several restrictions: emergency management response, healthcare facility visitation restrictions, a ban on non-essential travel for state employees, and temporary suspension of healthcare regulation and licensing requirements.

The order continues to encourage safe work environments and personal practices, like face coverings in public and practicing social distancing. The order also provides guidance for Vermont citizens on limiting exposure by encouraging facial coverings, remote work, and social distancing, among other recommendations. With certain industry exceptions, indoor and outdoor gatherings are limited to 25 people. Fairs and festivals are canceled. Travelers, including Vermont residents who travel elsewhere, are required to complete a quarantine period of 7 days following a negative COVID-19 test or 14 days if the individual does not receive testing.

Governor Scott also announced the launch of Vermont’s Health Care Provider Stabilization Grant Program for implementation beginning July 17, 2020. The grant, administered by the Agency of Human Services, is for eligible health care and human service providers which sustained loss revenues or incurred increased expenses due to COVID-19. The grant will be administered in two cycles with the first application period being July 17 through August 15. Eligibility requirements include but are not limited to the following: (1) must be a Vermont-based organization in operation on or before February 1, 2020, (2) demonstrated loss of revenue or increased expenses due to COVID-19, (3) completion of application and submission of requested documentation, and (4) disclosure of received financial relief to date. A webinar with more information will be held on July 20, 2020 from 6 to 7 PM EDT.

Finally, Governor Scott announced $25 million in grants for Vermont dairy farmers and processors through the Vermont Agency of Agriculture, Food & Markets (VAAFM) to provide relief due to lost income and increased expenses due to COVID-19 since March 1, 2020. Applications open July 17, 2020. Additional information on the grant application process and eligibility can be found here.

July 13, 2020:

Governor Scott announced $30 million in housing assistance for landlords, renters, homeowners, and those experiencing homelessness through two programs available starting July 13. The first program will administer $25 million of these funds through the Vermont State Housing Authority (“VSHA”). Applications, eligibility requirements, and other information for VSHA’s program can be found here.

The second program will administer the remaining $5 million in mortgage assistance payments for eligible low-income homeowners through the Vermont Housing Finance Agency (“VHFA”). Applications, eligibility requirements, and other information for VHFA’s program can be found here.

July 1, 2020:

Governor Scott announced Vermont’s Economic Recovery Grant Program commencing July 6th, 2020. Businesses who pay rooms and meals or sales and use tax will receive grants through the Department of Tax.

Additionally, other eligible private businesses and non-profits can qualify for grants through ACCD. The maximum amount is $50,000 and each business or organization may only receive one grant. The grant is determined by multiplying indicated/reported gross annual revenue by 10%. Further detail can be found here. Eligibility is determined based on the following criteria:

  • Business was open and active prior to February 15, 2020.
  • Business is open at the time of application for the grant or is required to close due to restriction and can verify its intent to re-open when COVID-19 restrictions are open.
  • Business has experienced a drop in total revenue of 75% or more for any one-month period between March 1, 2020 and August 31, 2020 when compared to the same month in 2019.

June 29, 2020:

Governor Phil Scott announced an expansion of counties from which travelers can visit Vermont without a 14-day quarantine to benefit Vermont’s hospitality sector. Starting July 1, counties in states with a ratio of less than 400 active COVID-19 cases per one million are approved to travel without a quarantine requirement. In addition to counties in the New England area and New York, the following states and DC will have approved counties: DE, MD, NJ, OH, PA, VA, WV. An updated map of approved counties can be found here. Quarantine restrictions for travel to and from other regions remain in place. Businesses in the lodging industry can find more information regarding their specific obligations here.

June 23, 2020:

Governor Scott announced a change to the Unemployment Insurance (“UI”) program that increases the maximum weekly benefit to UI claimants from $513 to $531 starting in the first week of July. The Vermont Department of Labor is moving to UI Tax Rate Schedule 1, reducing individual employers’ UI tax rates starting July 1, 2020.

June 22, 2020:

On June 19, Governor Scott announced Vermont’s plan to raise state occupancy limits, which will take effect on June 26, 2020. The state will raise the occupancy limit to 50% capacity or one person per 100 square feet of customer facing space for event venues, arts, culture and entertainment venues, and restaurants. Occupancy for indoor events is capped at 75 people and organized outdoor events are capped at 150 people.

The Administration provided additional guidance on mandatory health and safety requirements.

June 17, 2020:

Governor Scott announced several measures to gradually ease restrictions on Vermont long-term care facilities, hospitals and those over age 65.

Vermont will begin a phased reopening of long-term care facilities under newly issued guidance. Starting June 19, long-term care residential facilities can allow for up to two (2) visitors per resident, per day. The visits must be conducted outside only and adhere to guidance issued by DAIL around social distancing temperature checks, and record keeping of all visitors.

The Administration also announced an updated visitation policy for hospitals that provides guidance to health professionals, patients, and their families. The changes announced in the guidance will serve as a baseline requirement for all hospitals. Individual hospitals will develop visitation policies specific to the needs of their facilities and availability of supplies.

Lastly, Vermont residents over age 65 are no longer required to stay home. However, there is a continued need to take special precautions when leaving their home, including:

  • Continue to follow all CDC and VDH guidance, including keeping six feet apart, frequently washing hands with soap and water, avoiding others when sick, and more.
  • Avoid high risk areas (positive rate, trend in case rates, outbreaks).
  • Whenever possible, choose outdoor activities and keep indoor contact brief.
  • Minimize face to face contact while talking or while doing activities that require exertion.
  • Watch the size of the room and the number of people in the room

June 15, 2020:

Governor Scott extended Vermont’s state of emergency declaration until July 15. Under the declaration, the state will see an eased process for receiving aid at a state and municipal level. It also allows state officials to put forward additional public health regulations or remove those already in place.

May 29, 2020:

Today, Governor Scott signed Addendum 16 to Executive Order 01-20, titled “Close Contact Businesses; Large Social Gatherings.” The order indicates as of June 1, 2020, social gatherings of up to 25 people are permitted in any indoor or outdoor confined space. However, the Agency of Commerce and Community Development (ACCD)’s occupancy limits for retail, recreational, dining, worship, event spaces, and other businesses still applies as well as social distancing requirements.

The order remains in effect until June 15, 2020.

May 26, 2020:

On March 22, 2020, Governor Scott signed Addendum 15 to Executive Order 01-20. This order amended certain restrictions previously imposed on outdoor restaurants, bars, and other establishments which serve food and beverages. Beginning today, restaurants and bars are permitted to resume operations in accordance with guidelines for restaurants as set forth by the ACCD. The new order allows establishments which hold first, third, or fourth class liquor licenses to offer consumption of alcoholic beverages independent of or with the sale of food outdoors. However, there are certain considerations to note:

  • The establishment must submit a notice of intent to apply for an initial or modified Outdoor Consumption Permit at liquorcontrol.vermont.gov;
  • Such notice must include a description of the outdoor area and what physical barrier will be used to define the intended space; and
  • The applicant must have legal control or local authority to bind the establishment to an agreement to use the permit in accordance with the regulations.

The Department of Liquor and Lottery (DLL) has 48 hours to process permit applications and applicants have until June 12, 2020, to obtain the approval of their local jurisdiction to operate under the permit pending a full determination by the DLL. In other words, establishments which do not receive a full license by then will no longer be able to operate as an “outdoor establishment.” Fees for an initial or modified permit are waived. This order does not prohibit restaurants, bars, and other establishments from continuing to offer food and alcoholic beverages to-go.

The order makes it clear fairs and festivals are not covered under this order and remain suspended until further notice. The entire order is set to expire at midnight on June 15.

May 21, 2020:

On May 20, Governor Scott announced a statewide economic relief and recovery package for businesses. The state received $1.25 billion from the Federal CARES Act and will issue the relief in two phases. Phase One involves four components: (1) financial assistance for food, lodging/accommodation, retail, agriculture and other loans and grants for similar small businesses; (2) housing assistance for property owners and addressing homelessness; (3) technical assistance for establishing a recovery program and Employee Assistance Program (EAP) to provide mental health services for business owners; and (4) marketing support/campaigns and consumer stimulus grants to encourage residents to support local businesses. Governor Scott did not share any details about Phase Two. Businesses looking for more information on the Vermont Economic Recovery and Relief Package can find the full details of the plan here.

May 15, 2020:

Today Governor Scott signed Addendum 14, extending the State of Emergency and all active addenda to that order, until June 15, 2020, at midnight. The order took effective immediately upon signing. Another important directive in the order encourages residents to travel only as needed. Permissible circumstances include traveling for personal safety, work, shopping and services at essential businesses, outdoor exercise with low or no direct physical contact, gatherings limited to group sizes 10 and under, and in-state hotel and campground facilities. It also reiterates the state’s orders for residents to follow the CDC and Vermont Health Department (VDH) guidelines. Additionally, it adds a new directive not previously set forth in previous orders but common in other states: for people age 65 and over or with underlying medical conditions to continue to shelter-in-place. In terms of face masks, the order informs businesses and other entities they can require customers or clients to wear masks.

The order also specifically addresses Addenda 6 and 7 to modify the limits to the operations for lodging facilities. Under this new order, lodging accommodations may be allowed for the following reasons: (1) emergency housing for homeless or other vulnerable people; (2) accommodations for healthcare workers or other essential workers which support public health, safety, or critical infrastructure, including out-of-state workers entering the state for the same purposes; (3) pre-determined quarantining of individuals by the state; and (4) lodging for state residents and others who self-quarantine for 14 days prior to staying within the state overnight. Lodging businesses may resume accepting reservations today for stays beginning May 22 and later. The businesses are required to post an alert on their website, if applicable, which advises patrons of the state’s health and safety guidelines.

Finally, the order clarifies Addenda 2, 4, and 5 which prohibited on-site food consumption, closed contact businesses, and required telework, respectively, remain in full force and effect. Addendum 6 also remains in effect as amended by Addenda 10, 11, 12, 13, and this Addendum. This order does not apply to businesses which have not been authorized to reopen.

May 14, 2020:

Yesterday, May 13, 2020, Governor Scott signed an Amendment to Addendum 6 to Executive Order 01-20. Under this order nonessential businesses and services may resume business under an incremental and phased approach once the Agency of Commerce and Community Development (ACCD) issues guidance to mitigate the risk of spreading COVID-19 as the businesses reopen. However, the ACCD’s guidance must first begin with nonessential retail operations; occupancy, social distancing, and training requirements will exist for all businesses. Critical businesses may still operate under preexisting guidance. Addendum 2 which prohibited on-premises food consumption, Addendum 4 which required the closure of close contact businesses, and Addendum 5 which required businesses to implement teleworking are still in effect. The new order takes effect Monday, May 18, 2020.

May 6, 2020:

Today, May 6, 2020, Governor Scott signed Addendum 13 to Executive Order 01-20, titled “Play Smart and Play Safe: Restart Phase V.” In this order, Governor Scott amended Addendum 6 in order to “make clear Vermonters may leave home to get fresh air and exercise and resume limited social interactions and gatherings of 10 or fewer, preferably in outdoor settings, provided that physical distancing and protocols for hygiene consistent with guidance from VDH and the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), are observed.” In other words, the order calls for residents to do the following:

  • Maintain social distancing of 6-feet when outside of the household
  • Frequently perform handwashing with either soap and water or hand sanitizer
  • Wear facial covering over nose and mouth outside of the household, if feasible
  • Self-quarantine for 14 days after non-essential travel outside the state
  • Limit social interactions to people in “trusted households,” i.e. those following the guidelines

The order also indicates effective tomorrow, May 7, businesses which support or offer outdoor recreational and fitness activities which require very minimal contact may resume operations under the following conditions:

  • Business is a state or municipal park, recreation association, trail network, golf course, big game check stations, and guided expeditions (campgrounds, marinas, and beaches must remain close).
  • Customers “arrive, play, and leave,” i.e. no congregating is allowed before or after activities, such as tailgating
  • Restrict activities/facilities to state residents only and implement signage and registration progresses to that effect
  • Contact sports and games are not permitted
  • Indoor facilities which require in-person transactions remain closed, such as lobbies, pro-shops, bars, etc. (goods may be distributed through curbside pickup or delivery)
  • Only open restrooms if cleaned and sanitized frequently

The CDC, ACCD, and VOSHA guidelines which pertain to employees of these businesses, such as temperature checks, health and safety training, and face coverings still apply. However, outdoor businesses and facilities with more than 10 employees must develop an industry-specific training program and cannot reopen until such plan is developed and implemented.

This order expires May 15, 2020, at midnight.

May 4, 2020:

Today, May 4, 2020, Governor Phil Scott’s Addendum 12 to Executive Order 01-20 took effect. This new order reemphasized the requirements set forth in Addendum 11 to Executive Order 01-20, also known as “Work Smart and Stay Safe- Restart VT: Phase I,” which began April 20. As a reminder, Addendum 11 required, among other things, businesses to implement social distancing, health, and sanitation measures as recommended by the CDC and Agency of Commerce and Community Development (ACCD). Under the new order, Governor Scott is requiring all businesses to develop and implement a health and safety training program which meets or exceeds Vermont Occupational Safety and Health Agency’s (VOSHA) standards. Any business which closed for at least seven days may not reopen until it has such plan on file and available to VOSHA upon request. However, businesses with fewer than ten employees, may but are not required, to implement a formal program.

Governor Scott’s order also set forth the requirements of Phase 3 of reopening: (1) crews with no more than 10 people may perform construction or work at an unoccupied site; (2) manufacturing and distribution plants may resume operations with no more than 10 people in any location (if low-density) so long as employees are six feet apart; (3) other supporting operations my reopen with no more than the necessary number of employees to facility curbside pickup and delivery services. Notably, the order also provides that manufacturing, construction, and distribution businesses may resume with the minimum number of employees necessary for full operations (the VOSHA requirements still apply, however) and critical businesses as defined in Addendum 6 may continue to operate under pre-established guidance (in addition to implementing the mandatory health and safety requirements by VOSHA). Finally, all other businesses are still required to support telecommuting and encouraged to continue services such as curbside pickup and delivery.

The order is set to expire at midnight on May 15, 2020.

Governor Scott also amended Addendum 3 to Executive Order 01-20, which suspended all non-essential adult elective surgeries and medical procedures. Today’s order permits clinics, diagnostic imaging centers, ambulatory surgical centers, and other care settings which have a minimal impact on hospital inpatient capacity and personal protective equipment (PPE) consumption to resume performing elective surgeries and medical procedures, including dental care. The order requires the Department of Health to issue guidance for such providers to safely reopen but also includes a provision which would allow the health department to rescind this order and resume the guidance in Addendum 3 should the resumption of operations be deemed unsafe or a burden on the state’s healthcare system. This order also expires at midnight on May 15.

April 30, 2020:

During a press conference on April 29, 2020, Governor Scott announced the state would be implementing more stringent COVID-19 testing and contact tracing measures. The new goal is to increase testing from 2,000 to 7,500 per week. The new measures will be rolled out in three phases. Phase One will focus on testing vulnerable populations and healthcare workers in settings with the most prevalent outbreaks. Phase Two will focus on groups of individuals instrumental to the reopening of certain industries throughout the state. This includes additional categories of healthcare workers, home health workers, and child care providers. The final phase, Phase Three, will continue to expand upon the categories of individuals included in the first two phases and will also include individuals under 14-day mandatory quarantines.

April 24, 2020:

On April 24, 2020, Governor Phil Scott signed Addendum 11 to Executive Order 01-20, titled “Work Smart & Stay Safe—Restart Vermont: Phase II.” This new order builds upon Governor Scott’s Addendum 10 to Executive Order 01-20 titled “Work Smart and Stay Safe- Restart VT: Phase I,” which began April 20.The first directive in this new order requires all entities to maintain the requirements set forth in the Phase I order and implement the following requirements based on guidance from the state health department, Agency of Commerce and Community Development (ACCD), and CDC: (1) employee screenings and temperature checks for respiratory illnesses at the start of a work shift: (2) signs at entrances indicating people with respiratory illness must not come in; (3) employees may not congregate on site; (4) employees with known contact with another employee diagnosed with COVID-19 must not present to work and must self-quarantine, for 14 days; (5) designate a health officer on-site at each shift; (6) employees must complete a mandatory training on health and safety requirements provided by VOSHA.

“Micro-crews,” with no more than 5 people per job-site may perform outdoor or construction work at unoccupied structures. Manufacturing and distribution operations can only allow 5 employees at a job-site at a given time and must maintain a social distance of six feet. Outdoor retail operations may resume operations with no more than 10 people, employees and customers included. For more information on Vermont’s Phase 2 reopening, see the full order.

The order terminates midnight May 15, 2020.

April 19, 2020:

On Friday, April 17, Governor Phil Scott signed Addendum 10 to Executive Order 01-20 titled “Work Smart and Stay Safe- Restart VT: Phase I,” which immediately took effect. The purpose of the order is to provide directives to residents and businesses to move forward with “reopening” the state.

The state will reopen in phases—Phase 1 is effective April 20, 2020. The process is dictated by the Agency of Commence and Community Development (ACCD) and will proceed as follows with the following ACCD guidance: (1) “micro-crews” which are no more than two people per location/ job site may perform outdoor work and construction in unoccupied structures. Supporting operations may resume with the minimum number of employees necessary to support curbside pickup and delivery services; (2) commercial retail operations, including outdoor operations, may resume with the minimum number of employees necessary to support curbside pickup and delivery services as well as warehouse operations which also offer those services. Orders, however, must be placed online or over the phone, meaning in-store transactions are still prohibited; (3) services which operate with one employee may resume operations so long as only one client or customer is present at the time the service is being offered; and (4) critical businesses and government agencies may continue to operate under Addendum 6 to Executive Order 01-20 and ACCD Sector Guidance.

The Order also set forth the following requirements for businesses: (1) employees cannot report to work if demonstrating symptoms of a respiratory illness and are required to immediately leave the workplace if they begin exhibiting such symptoms; (2) employees must maintain social distancing of six feet; (3) employees must wear non-medical cloth face coverings such as a bandana or scarf over their nose and mouth. Retail cashiers standing behind a “sneeze guard” or shield are exempt; (4) employees must have frequent access to soap and water or hand sanitizer, and all common areas, frequently touched surfaces must be disinfected throughout the shift and upon transfer from person to person, if applicable; and (5) no more than two people can occupy a vehicle when conducting work. Residents are encouraged (but not mandated by this order) to wear cloth face coverings whenever they are outside the household.

The order terminates at midnight on May 15, 2020.

April 17, 2020:

Governor Scott outlined a phase re-start of Vermont’s economy and signed an addendum to Executive Order 01-20. The Order implements new health and safety requirements in order to start getting more residents back to work. This includes social distancing, face coverings, and having easy and frequent access to soap and water or hand sanitizer. These requirements are for all businesses in operation during the declared state of emergency.

April 10, 2020:

Governor Phil Scott extended the State of Emergency declaration through midnight, Friday, May 15, 2020, through Addendum 9 to Executive Order 01-20. In addition to extending the declaration, Governor Scott’s order mandated the Agency of Commerce and Community Development (ACCD) to clarify the impact of the Stay Home/Stay Safe order on the real estate, financial, legal, and professional services industries. That guidance is still pending.

April 9, 2020:

On April 9, Governor Phil Scott enacted Addendum 7 to Executive Order 01-20 setting forth new quarantine restrictions for people traveling into the state. Effective immediately, any persons—regardless of resident status—entering Vermont from out-of-state must immediately self-quarantine for 14 days unless the trip occurred for an “essential purpose.” An essential purpose” under the order means “travel required for personal safety; food, beverage or medicine; medical care; care of others; and to perform work, services or functions deemed critical to public health and safety, as well as economic and national security, as set forth in Stay Home/Stay Safe.” Any “visitors” who exhibit signs and symptoms of COVID-19 or would be arriving from “hot spots” such as Florida, Louisiana, Detroit, Chicago, and New York City are prohibiting from entering the state.

The order also provides explicit restrictions for the suspension of “lodging operations.” “Lodging” is defined as hotels, motels, bed and breakfasts, inns, short term rentals, such as those made available through VRBO, Homeaway, AirBnb and other services, parks for recreational vehicles and campgrounds, all public and private camping facilities including those managed by the Vermont Department of Parks and Recreation, among other establishments. Under the order, lodging establishments may not accept new reservations or extend the existing reservations of patrons already on the premises unless an exception under section 6(a)-(d) applies.

April 5, 2020:

On Friday, April 3, 2020, Governor Phil Scott issued Addendum 8 to Executive Order 01-20 clarifying that any previous order with an expiration date prior to April 15, 2020, subject to the Stay Home/Stay Safe order must remain closed to the public until April 15.

March 31, 2020:

Today, Governor Phil Scott enacted Addendum 7 to Executive Order 01-20 setting forth new quarantine restrictions for people traveling into the state. Effective immediately, any persons—regardless of resident status—entering Vermont from out-of-state must immediately self-quarantine for 14 days unless the trip occurred for an “essential purpose.” An essential purpose” under the order means “travel required for personal safety; food, beverage or medicine; medical care; care of others; and to perform work, services or functions deemed critical to public health and safety, as well as economic and national security, as set forth in Stay Home/Stay Safe.” Any “visitors” (not defined) who exhibit signs and symptoms of COVID-19 or would be arriving from “hot spots” such as Florida, Louisiana, Detroit, Chicago, and New York City are prohibiting from entering the state.

The order also provides explicit restrictions for the suspension of “lodging operations.” “Lodging” is defined as hotels, motels, bed and breakfasts, inns, short term rentals, such as those made available through VRBO, Homeaway, AirBnb and other services, parks for recreational vehicles and campgrounds, all public and private camping facilities including those managed by the Vermont Department of Parks and Recreation, among other establishments. Under the order, lodging establishments may not accept new reservations or extend the existing reservations of patrons already on the premises unless an exception under section 6(a)-(d) applies.

March 30, 2020:

(Chittenden County): On Friday, March 27, 2020, at 5:00 p.m. The Chittenden County Regional Planning Commission (CCPRC) updated its resource document which compiles information from all 17 municipalities within the county. For example, the city of Milton is no longer activating water shut offs.

March 27, 2020:

On March 26, 2020, Governor Phil Scott announced an extension to his previous order which required public and private K-12 schools to close from March 18, through April 6, 2020. This new declaration requires schools to remain closed for the duration of the 2019-2020 school year. All schools must fully implement distance learning curriculum by April 13 and the Secretary of the Agency of Education will issue new guidance for end-of-year celebrations such as graduation by May 8, 2020.

The order also encourages, but not requires, schools to make their facilities and staff available to provide child care services for “essential persons.” Essential persons are employees of businesses which provide services or functions critical to public health and safety, economic and national security, and as further described in Executive Order 01-20 Addendum.

March 26, 2020:

(Chittenden County): The Chittenden County Regional Planning Commission (CCPRC) updated its resource document which compiles information from all 17 municipalities within the county. Relevant information includes the following: all town halls, with the exception of Milton, Shelburne, and Williston, are closed to the public (Milton, Shelburne, and Williston have modified their operations); Burlington, Huntington, and Winooski suspended utility disconnection procedures. Winooski’s Public Health Department also suspended all non-essential inspections. Other general COVID-19 information is available on CCRPC’s website which is updated regularly.

March 25, 2020:

Yesterday, March 24, Governor Scott issued an Executive Order directing all residents to stay at home except for essential reasons related to health, safety, and necessary supplies.  All businesses that are not deemed “critical to the public health and safety, and economic and national security” must close. Critical businesses include health care operations, critical infrastructure including utilities, telecommunications, airports, transportation, construction necessary for COVID-19 response and for critical infrastructure, critical manufacturing including food, retails serving basic human needs, fuel supply, hardware stores conducted online and by phone for delivery and curb-side where possible, transportation and agricultural equipment sectors, trash collection, agriculture, lodging where required for COVID-19 response, safety and sanitation services for buildings and residences, mail, media, financial institutions, providers of necessary goods and services to economically disadvantaged, and other vendors as necessary to support the COVID-19 response, critical infrastructure, and national security. The Order remains in effect until April 15, 2020.

This order does not include a number of categories of businesses that are deemed essential and critical in other states, counties, and cities. Businesses outside these categories may request that the ACCD deem them critical and will receive notification within 24 hours. ACCD has an FAQ page addressing what qualifies as critical. The ACCD deems all businesses identified in CISA guidelines as critical as well.

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