Governor Wolf announced on Friday that 13 additional Pennsylvania counties will move to the yellow phase of Pennsylvania’s staggered reopening plan, continuing a slow and steady strategy to permit businesses to get back to work. The counties include Allegheny, Armstrong, Bedford, Blair, Butler, Cambria, Fayette, Fulton, Greene, Indiana, Somerset, Washington and Westmoreland.
This update includes the Pittsburgh region and surrounding counties, which is a welcomed step forward for businesses in that area. These counties join 24 others that were moved into the yellow phase on May 1. The yellow phase lifts the governor’s stay-at-home order, allows childcare facilities to open if in compliance with distancing and cleansing guidance, individuals can gather with up to 25 others, and retail businesses can open with limitations to the number of people inside to half-capacity. Construction throughout the state was permitted to resume in accordance with the prior order on May 1. All businesses must adhere to the Pennsylvania Department of Health’s prior order requiring specific mitigation efforts, including masks to be worn by all employees.
The yellow phase maintains the same restrictions for dining facilities, which is carry-out, drive-through and delivery only. Further, it does not include the reopening of indoor recreation, health and wellness facilities, personal care services (such as gyms, spas, hair salons, nail salons, massage therapy providers), or entertainment facilities (such as casinos, theaters).
Simultaneously with this change, Governor Wolf extended the state’s stay-at-home order, or red phase, for the remaining counties until June 4. According to the governor’s press release, this does not mean that the stay-at-home order will not be lifted before June 4 for some counties. Nonetheless, this extension was met with much pushback from businesses in Philadelphia and throughout the southeast region of the state.
The final green phase will allow all businesses to reopen subject to CDC and Pennsylvania Department of Health Guidelines.
As the governor continues to move counties through the three-phase reopening plan, Pennsylvania businesses will want to keep watch of the rapidly changing reopening plans.