Mayor Craig A. Moe signed Executive Order No. 2020-27 that will take effect at 5:00pm on December 16, 2020.
In accordance with the Prince George’s County Executive Order, Mayor Moe signed the following to remain in a Phase 1 and modified Phase 2 stage of re-opening, so we can continue to fight the health and economic hardships during COVID-19:
WHEREAS, Pursuant to the powers granted to me by Section 2-176 and Section 2-177 of the Laurel City Code, I, Craig A. Moe, Mayor of the City of Laurel have declared a State of Public Health Emergency in the City of Laurel due to an outbreak of disease (COVID-19) which does constitute an imminent threat to the health, safety and welfare of the City and its citizens;
WHEREAS, the Order of the Governor of the State of Maryland Number 20-11-17-01, issued November 17, 2020, specifically authorized political subdivisions to issue more restrictive orders than issued by the Governor including requiring any businesses, organizations, establishments, or facilities to close or modify their operations; and/or requiring individuals to remain indoors or to refrain from congregating; and
WHEREAS, based upon data analysis of December 10, 2020, Prince George’s County had more than 45,520 confirmed positive cases of COVID-19; the County’s infection rate was 1.10; its positivity rate was 10.1%; hospital capacity was 48.8%; there had been 952 deaths and 4,443 hospitalizations; and
WHEREAS, the average daily case rate last week was 45.7 new cases per 100,000 residents, which places Prince George’s County and the City of Laurel in the “critical risk” category; and
WHEREAS, because recent increases in relevant metrics show Prince George’s County and the City of Laurel continued to be in the high-risk category of disease transmission, health experts have confirmed that the country is in a second wave of COVID-19 transmission exacerbated by behaviors from the recent Thanksgiving Holiday, upcoming winter months will lead to increased indoor activities, the influenza season and possibility of increased high-risk behavior during the upcoming holidays, Prince George’s County Executive Angela D. Alsobrooks, issued Executive Order No. 26-2020 requiring that Prince George’s County remain in a Phase 1/Phase 2 (modified) stage of re-opening with certain modifications to take effect on December 16, 2020 at 5:00 pm; and
WHEREAS, the City of Laurel located within Prince George's County, Maryland has also seen a recent increase in the number of positive cases of COVID-19, and after consultation with the City of Laurel Health Officer and in order to reduce the threat to human health, to protect and save lives, it is necessary and reasonable to implement the following measures to ensure public safety and welfare of all persons in the City of Laurel effective December 16, 2020 at 5:00 pm:
I. All Retail Establishments (including large retail, grocery stores and shopping malls) may
open with the following safeguards and capacity limits:
- May operate a 1 person/household per 200 square feet, or a maximum capacity of 25%, whichever is lower;
- Online shopping and payment via digital platforms should be encouraged as much as possible.
II. Indoor dining at restaurants and other similar establishments that sell food or beverages for
consumption in the City of Laurel ("Restaurants") is prohibited. Dining at banquets, receptions and meeting rooms in hotels, conference centers and similar establishments is also prohibited.
III. Restaurants may open to the general public, subject to the following conditions:
- Food or beverages are promptly taken from the premises, i.e., on a carryout or drive-through basis; or
- Delivered to customers off the premises; or
- Outdoor dining at Restaurants will be permitted if there is adherence the following rules:
- Establishment has current approval for outdoor dining or receives a Restaurant Temporary Outdoor Seating Area authorization;
- Ensure tables are seated at least six feet away from each other, except for households seated together;
- Do not allow groups larger than six persons to be seated together, except members of the same household;
d. Number of patrons should not exceed 50% capacity for outdoor dining space as approved by the City;
e. For at least 30 days to assist with contact tracing, must maintain a daily record of all patrons that consume food or beverages on premises;
f. Signage must be posted at each entrance advising customers and visitors:
- Compliance with face coverings rules are mandatory at all times when not eating or drinking;
- Must maintain social distancing of at least 6 feet apart when waiting to be seated or while seated at the bar;
g. All employees must receive health screenings prior to their shifts;
h. No food service in a buffet format;
i. Clean and disinfect each tables and chairs between each seating in accordance with CDC and MDH guidelines, using cleaning products that meet the criteria of the EPA guidelines for use against COVID-19;
j. Hand sanitizer and appropriate hand washing facilities must be available;
k. Use of single-use disposable paper menus or sanitize reusable menus between each seating;
l. Payment via digital platforms should be encouraged; and
m. Any other applicable laws or regulations.
- Gaming facilities and casinos such as MGM National Harbor and simulcast betting facilities (outside of horse racing establishments) may operate at 25% of maximum capacity. Use of appropriate personal protective equipment, including face coverings, by employees and patrons. Maintain physical distancing (greater than 6’), wherever possible. Adherence to other State directives is required, unless further amended by the County Health Officer and/or County Office of Emergency Management.
- For purposes of this Executive Order, Maximum Capacity means the maximum occupancy load under the applicable fire code, as set forth on the certificate issued for the establishment by a local fire code official. If no such certificate has been issued, the maximum occupancy is as determined by applicable laws, regulations and permits.
- The directives set forth herein will be enforced by the Prince George’s County Health Department, City of Laurel Police Department and the City of Laurel Office of the Fire Marshal and Permit Services
- A person who knowingly and willfully violates this Order is guilty of a misdemeanor and on conviction is subject to imprisonment not exceeding one year or a fine not exceeding $5,000 or both.
- Prince George’s County and the City of Laurel will conduct scheduled and unscheduled inspections of retail, restaurant and business establishments to check for compliance with this Order. Non-compliance with this Order may subject the owner and/or operator to a civil fine not exceeding $1,000 pursuant to the Prince George’s County Code, and the City of Laurel Code and may subject the establishments to closure pursuant to the legal authority of the Health Officer or other legal authority.
- This Executive Order supersedes any inconsistent provision of Executive Order No. 2020-26. All other provisions of Executive Order No. 2020-26, not inconsistent with this Executive Order including, but not limited to, Section II (Face Coverings) and Section III (General Rules for All Establishments Allowed to Open or Operate) remain in full force and effect; and
- If any provision of this Executive Order or its application to any person, entity, or circumstance is held invalid by any court of competent jurisdiction, all other provisions or applications of the Order shall remain in effect to the extent possible without the invalid provision or application. To achieve this purpose, the provisions of this Executive Order are severable.
This public health emergency continues to rapidly change, and the City will continue its efforts to monitor, and work with other public safety and health officials. The City will continue to re-evaluate conditions on a daily basis. Other City actions that will also be taken are listed below:
Since March 30, 2020 the following applied in the City of Laurel and those listed below shall remain in effect.:
All City basketball courts and areas are CLOSED.
All homeowner’s association’s in the City of Laurel are directed to continue to keep all basketball courts and areas CLOSED.
All City of Laurel parks has remained open but all applicable social distancing guidance published by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (“CDC”) and the Maryland Department of Health (“MDH”), shall be followed at all times. Face Coverings are required.
All City offices remain open; however, service delivery will be conducted online or by telephone when at all possible.
All City of Laurel picnic pavilions will remain CLOSED.
Laurel Police Officers or employees from the City’s Office of the Fire Marshal and Permit Services will enforce the above directives.
This Executive Order will take effect at 5:00 p.m. on December 16, 2020 and shall remain in effect until further notice or this Executive Order has been amended or rescinded.
You are also asked to continue to follow CDC recommendations and guidelines of social distancing, wearing a face mask that covers the nose and mouth, continue to wash your hands and clean surfaces regularly, and whether you are showing symptoms or not, to get tested. These are proven ways to slow the spread of the COVID-19 virus and keep yourself and your community safe. For a list of COVID-19 testing sites, visit https://coronavirus.maryland.gov/datasets/a0a3e101ebcb402db47873b59055b2a3.
Mayor Moe, the Laurel City Council and the City’s EOC will continue to monitor and keep current with actions and information pertaining to the pandemic outbreak and will be sure the residents, businesses, employees and visitors are kept well informed through our Social Media platforms. You can also visit our COVID-19 webpage at coronavirus.cityoflaurel.org, along with the CDC at www.CDC.gov, the Maryland Department of Health at www.health.maryland.gov and the Prince George’s County Health Department at https://www.princegeorgescountymd.gov/1588/Health-Services.