The Mills Administration announced today that it will extend the requirement for certain businesses statewide to close by 9:00 pm in order to limit activities that could contribute to the transmission of COVID-19. This applies to restaurants and “amusement venues” previously outlined by Governor Mills.
This notice of extension comes in conjunction with Dr. Nirav Shah’s announcement today of an upward trend in the number of hospitalizations in Maine as well as a reversal of the 7-day positivity rate for testing for the COVID-19. Until today’s announcement, there had been a gradual downward trend in that rate. As of today, the positivity rate for testing for the COVID-19 has risen to 5.43%, a rate that remains below the national average. Two weeks ago, the positivity rate was at 4.6%. As of today, Dr. Shan, Director of MaineCDC, said there are 177 currently hospitalized statewide with 48 of them in intensive care and 19 on ventilators.
“With more people getting sick, going into the hospital and dying from COVID-19 in Maine, it is clear we cannot afford to relax this rule now, especially as we wait to see the full impact of this holiday season on the rate of the virus transmission in our state,” said Governor Mills in a press release issued by her office today. “Maintaining an early closing time for businesses will keep them open for the majority of their operating hours while curbing late night gatherings where we are more likely to lower our guard. I encourage all Maine people who want to sustain their favorite small businesses through these winter months to continue to order take out delivery which is still allowed after closing time.”
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