COVID-19: Governor Mills Announces New Public Health and Safety Measures

With COVID-19 cases rapidly rising throughout the state of Maine, Governor Janet Mills yesterday announced new public health and safety measures to mitigate the spread of the virus. These measures include daily early closure of certain businesses statewide, the extension of the Keep Maine Healthy program, and an increase in the number of rapid COVID-19 testing sites.

Business Closures

Beginning Friday, November 20, 2020, certain businesses statewide must close for the night by 9:00 p.m. These businesses include:

  • All outdoor and indoor amusement venues
  • Movie theaters
  • Performing arts venues
  • Casinos
  • Businesses that provide seated food and drink service, including:
    • Social clubs
    • Restaurants
    • Bars and tasting rooms

This measure follows similar actions taken by Massachusetts, Rhode Island, Vermont, and New York, and will remain in effect through Sunday, December 6, 2020.

Extending the Keep Maine Healthy Program

To help businesses comply with these new measures, Governor Mills will invest $100,000 into the Coronavirus Relief Fund to extend the Keep Maine Healthy public awareness campaign into January 2021. The campaign, which launched in June 2020, uses social media, digital, television, and streaming media advertising to encourage Maine residents to take actions that limit the spread of COVID-19.

Additional COVID-19 Test Sites

Beginning Friday, November 20, 2020, an additional 52 Walgreens pharmacies will begin offering free drive-through rapid COVID-19 antigen testing. This testing is available to anyone in Maine who is experiencing symptoms of COVID-19. Next week, three more Walgreens pharmacies will begin offering testing, bringing the total to 65 Walgreens sites throughout Maine.

For questions regarding these new public health and safety measures, or any of Governor Mills’s Executive Orders related to COVID-19, please contact government relations attorneys Ann Robinson, or Newell Augur.