In his message Friday to county residents, County Executive Elrich said:
I know that reopening our County in the wake of the COVID-19 health crisis is foremost on everyone’s mind. I want you to know that I am committed to working to protect the health of our residents as best as possible. That is how we made decisions for Phase I of our reopening, which began on Monday.
On Wednesday, Governor Larry Hogan announced Phase II of the reopening of Maryland. Each county has been allowed to enact reopening procedures in a manner that is best for its residents. We are proceeding based on the science and data and in consultation with our public health officer and other health experts. Our decisions and actions are similar to those of our neighboring jurisdictions.
For now, we are maintaining the stay-at-home order. We are evaluating Governor Hogan’s new Executive Order and are in the process of determining if any of his Phase II provisions will work with our Phase I policies and guidelines. Following guidelines from the CDC and other public health experts, each phase should have about 14 days of improvement before moving to the next phase.
Please know that we are actively trying to drop the number of new cases, especially through increased testing and contact tracing. When new cases of COVID-19 show up, those people most likely did not know they were carriers. The quicker we can identify carriers who don’t show symptoms, the easier it is to slow the spread. We are aggressively pursuing multiple testing possibilities. As you can imagine, it is a complicated process involving tracking individual tests and results and payments for tests. We are planning these efforts with a first focus on areas around the County and in facilities that are hardest hit.
I have an obligation to all of you to be cautious in our decisions. Montgomery County still has the State’s second-highest number of COVID-19 cases. That is why we will continue to follow the data and science to ensure that our residents, visitors and businesses are safe and that we slow the spread of COVID-19 in our County and the region.
Shady Grove Transfer Stations Reopens
The Shady Grove transfer station resumes normal operations today, after being closed due to the pandemic. The facility’s hours are 7 am-5 pm Monday through Saturday (at both entrances) and 9 am-5 pm on Sunday (Route 355 entrance only).
Business Microenterprise Stabilization Program financial assistance applications
Montgomery County will begin accepting applications to its Microenterprise Stabilization Program (MSP) from 10 am Wednesday, June 10 through 5 pm on Tuesday, June 16. The form will be posted on the MSP site on June 10. Visit the site now for information on eligibility requirements and required documentation.
The MSP, developed in response to the COVID-19 health crisis, is designed to provide financial assistance to Montgomery County for-profit businesses with five or fewer employees, businesses with no employees, including sole proprietors and independent contractors, that experienced a loss in revenue as a result of the current health crisis.
Montgomery County Releases Additional Guidance for Business Reopening and Recovery
As Montgomery County continues reopening as part of Phase 1 of the COVID-19 pandemic recovery, County officials released additional guidance to help business owners as they bring their organizations back online. This guidance, in the form of a Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) document, can be found on the Montgomery County website.
These FAQs guide business owners to the proper documentation in areas such as outdoor dining, requirements for reopening, and information about looking ahead to Phases 2 and 3 of recovery.