Gov. Walz Announces Four Week Dial Back to Slow COVID-19 Surge
TJ Leverentz | Nov 18, 2020 AT 8:41 am
(KWNO) - Minnesota Governor Tim Walz has issued Executive Order 20-99, ordering a dial back of specific activities meant to slow the spread of COVID-19.
Beginning Friday, November 20, at 11:59 p.m. and lasting until Friday, December 18, in-person social gatherings with other households are prohibited; bars and restaurants are dialed back to take-out and delivery service only; gyms, fitness studios, entertainment venues, event spaces, and similar establishments will need to close; and adult and youth sports are paused.
The order also discourages out-of-state travel.
"We're at a dangerous point in this pandemic. As many of you have seen it's raging across the upper Midwest and across the nation," said Walz during a Wednesday night address. Walz said Minnesota has some of the highest infection rates in the world.
The governor says the surge has causes staffing shortages at care facilities along with police officers and fire fighters. He also said teachers are being infected in their communities which is preventing in-person learning.
Retail businesses, childcare centers, salons, and places of worship may continue to operate with proper precautions in place.
Schools will continue to operate under the Safe Learning Plan, which shifts between in-person, distance, and hybrid learning depending on the local conditions of the virus. Organized Youth Sports organizations and programs must stop all in-person activities—including practices, group workouts, games, and tournaments.
Higher education institutions, in consultation with their governing boards, may offer in-person classes or activities consistent with MDH guidelines for offering in-person or on-site activities and programming at higher education institutions. Higher education institutions must follow guidelines available at MDH's Institutes of Higher Education website.
An email from the Governor's office says that small businesses struggling as they do their part to combat the spread of COVID-19 will be able to get a share of $10 million in Small Business Relief Grants. Governor Walz says, "This funding will support an additional 1,000 businesses that have applied for the grant program. It supplements hundreds of millions of dollars in small business support that Minnesota has allocated since the beginning of the pandemic."