In a sign of the dramatically uncertain nature of next steps, more states have issued orders to partially reopen their economies, while others have extended closure orders that were set to expire at the end of the month.
Alaska, Colorado, Georgia, Minnesota, Mississippi, Montana, Oklahoma, South Carolina, Tennessee, and Vermont all have taken the first step towards a gradual reopening. While some of these states have loosened restrictions more aggressively than others, some common themes emerge. Businesses that do reopen must try to maintain social distancing, operate at reduced capacity, and take measures to ensure the safety of their employees and customers. In some instances, the orders refer to CDC guidelines. In others, the orders set forth a number of express requirements (for example, Alaska requires reopened retail operations to follow CDC cleaning and disinfecting guidelines, or close for 72 consecutive hours per week).
Many states and local jurisdictions have Stay at Home orders that are set to expire by the end of the month. We anticipate closure extensions for many of these jurisdictions, given that testing and contact tracking continue to be challenges. For example, the California Bay Area counties have already extended orders through the end of May, and the Governors of Delaware and Connecticut announced that reopening is premature.