YORK – Counties in northwest and northcentral Pennsylvania will move to the yellow phase of COVID-19 reopening on May 8, while all other counties in the state will remain under Governor Wolf’s stay-at-home order, according to Senator Kristin Phillips-Hill (R-York).
The yellow phase of reopening will allow businesses with in-person operations to open under strict health guidelines and building safety orders to reduce the risk of infection. Telework must still continue where feasible. School closures and restrictions on congregate care, prison visits and large gatherings of more than 25 people will remain in place. Indoor recreation, health and wellness facilities and entertainment venues will remain closed, and restaurants and bars will still be limited to carry-out and delivery only.
Counties moving to the yellow phase include: Bradford, Cameron, Centre, Clarion, Clearfield, Clinton, Crawford, Elk, Erie, Forest, Jefferson, Lawrence, Lycoming, McKean, Mercer, Montour, Northumberland, Potter, Snyder, Sullivan, Tioga, Union, Venango, and Warren.
All other counties in Pennsylvania will remain under Governor Wolf’s stay-at-home order. Only businesses deemed life-sustaining by the Wolf Administration are permitted to operate in those areas of the state.
Phillips-Hill expressed deep frustrations that local employers and workers will still be forced to remain at home while businesses in other Pennsylvania communities are allowed to reopen safely under the governor’s plan.
“We have seen many industries on the other side of the Mason-Dixon line continue to operate, and soon other parts of the state will be out of the stay-at home order as well. Meanwhile, the governor’s home county continues to be shut down. York Countians have been beyond patient during this pandemic. Protecting public health and our economic health are not mutually exclusive goals. Many businesses could reopen if given similar considerations as our state-owned liquor stores have been afforded,” she said.
The Senate approved legislation in April that would have allowed certain businesses in the state to reopen if they followed guidance from state and federal health experts to properly protect the health of customers and employees. Governor Wolf vetoed that legislation, adding another layer of uncertainty employees and employers throughout the state.
The Senate Health and Human Services Committee and the Senate Local Government Committee will hold a joint hearing on Monday, May 3 beginning at 10 a.m. to allow lawmakers to directly question members of the Wolf Administration about the reopening plan. The hearing will be streamed live at PASenateGOP.com.