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What restrictions are in place for businesses?
** All "non-life-sustaining" businesses in Pennsylvania have been ordered CLOSED by Gov. Tom Wolf effective 8:00 p.m. on Thursday, March 19, 2020 **
what businesses are starting to re-open?
Pennsylvania Governor Tom Wolf is using a phased, regional approach to allow certain types of businesses to re-open - provided they comply with strict social distancing practices and CDC guidance for proper cleaning. Here is a list of businesses, arranged by category and updated frequently, that shows which type of business is open or must remain closed.
WHO DO I CALL TO REPORT A MONTGOMERY COUNTY RESTAURANT or business IN VIOLATION OF THE GOVERNOR’S ORDER?
Please call us at 610-631-3000 to report any Montgomery County business that’s in violation of the governor’s order.
what type of business is considered "non-life-sustaining"? can my business be open? should I close?
Pennsylvania Governor Tom Wolf released this document (that is updated frequently) that lists all different types of businesses. They are arranged by category of their industry, like manufacturing or hospitality, and then sub-categorized even further. There is a column on the right-hand side that lists whether your business can maintain physical operations (i.e. be "open" or "closed").
There is an extensive list of Frequently Asked Questions to the Governor’s Office about this. We suggest you start there if you have questions about your particular field of business.
Still have questions? Here’s who you should contact:
For Business Owners: Call 1-877-PA-HEALTH, press Option 1 or email: email@example.com
For Everyone Else: Call 1-877-PA-HEALTH, press Option 2
Additional Information for Restaurants: Businesses that offer carry-out, delivery, and drive-through food and beverage service may continue to do so, but eating and drinking inside restaurants and bars is temporarily prohibited. These businesses offering carry-out, delivery, and drive-through food and beverage should employ social distancing best practices and be aware of the Trump Administration’s guidance to avoid gatherings of 10 or more people.
What agencies can enforce closures?
- Pennsylvania Liquor Control Board
- Pennsylvania Department of Health
- Pennsylvania Department of Agriculture
- Pennsylvania State Police
- Local officials, using their resources to enforce closure orders within their jurisdictions
ARE THERE STEPS I SHOULD BE TAKING AT MY WORKPLACE TO HELP PREVENT THE SPREAD AND KEEP MY STAFF AND CUSTOMERS HEALTHY?
For All Types of Business:
Pennsylvania Secretary of Health Dr. Rachel Levine signed an order effective April 19, 2020 that establishes protocols for protecting workers still employed at life-sustaining businesses - and the customers who visit them.
In addition to the social distancing, mitigation and cleaning protocols, businesses that serve the public within a building or defined area are ordered to implement the following, based on the size of the building and number of employees:
- Require all customers to wear masks while on premises, and deny entry to individuals not wearing masks, unless the business is providing medication, medical supplies, or food, in which case the business must provide alternative methods of pick-up or delivery of goods, except individuals who cannot wear a mask due to a medical condition (including children the age of 2 years) may enter the premises without having to provide medical documentation;
- Conduct business with the public by appointment only and, to the extent that this is not feasible, limit occupancy to no greater than 50 percent of the number stated on their certificate of occupancy as necessary to reduce crowding in the business and at check-out and counter lines in order to maintain a social distance of 6 feet, and place signage throughout each site to mandate social distancing for both customers and employees;
- Alter hours of business so that the business has sufficient time to clean or to restock or both;
- Install shields or other barriers at registers and check-out areas to physically separate cashiers and customers or take other measures to ensure social distancing of customers from check-out personnel, or close lines to maintain a social distance between of 6 feet between lines;
- Encourage use of online ordering by providing delivery or outside pick-up;
- Designate a specific time for high-risk and elderly persons to use the business at least once every week if there is a continuing in-person customer-facing component;
- In businesses with multiple check-out lines, only use every other register, or fewer. After every hour, rotate customers and employees to the previously closed registers. Clean the previously open registers and the surrounding area, including credit card machines, following each rotation;
- Schedule handwashing breaks for employees at least every hour; and
- Where carts and handbaskets are available, assign an employee to wipe down carts and handbaskets before they become available to a new customer.
For Restaurants and Food Retailers:
- Restaurants must go to a “take-out only” model of serving customers
- Restaurants: Businesses that offer carry-out, delivery, and drive-through food and beverage service may continue to do so, but eating and drinking inside restaurants and bars is temporarily prohibited.
How can I get paid time off through my employer?
You would need to speak to your employer in regards to paid time off.
My employer is still open. I’m concerned about the public coming in and want you to shut down our business.
At this current time, Montgomery County has no enforcement to shut down businesses.
is there any type of government assistance available for my business?
The Pennsylvania Department of Community and Economic Development is working with the Small Business Administration (SBA) to coordinate the launch of the SBA’s Disaster Relief Loan Program. In anticipation of the approval of this program, any business that is interested in applying for low-interest loans should review the loan application process to ensure they have all of the necessary paperwork in advance. The time for application approval is not known, but SBA has said before that it will take between 10-18 days for a successful application to receive their money.