Maine - COVID-19 Covered

Maine

Total Cases: 4,089 (August 13)
Tests Administered: 199,118 (August 11)
Fatalities: 126 (August 13)
Testing:
  • The Maine Department of Health and Human Services announced four additional COVID-19 “swab and testing” sites. (July 21) 
  • The Mills administration announces 18 new “Swab and Send” COVID-19 testing sites. (July 14) 

ECONOMIC RESPONSE

Essential Service Designations:

  • Governor Mills signed an executive order requiring all non-essential businesses to close physical locations until April 8. Under the executive order, essential businesses include those identified by the US Department of Homeland Security Cybersecurity & Infrastructure Security Agency Memorandum on Identification of Essential Critical Infrastructure Workers During COVID-19 Response. (March 24)
    • The order also added several other activities that Maine considers “essential,” including fishing and aquaculture, essential home repair, grocery, and household goods, and childcare providers. (March 24)

Labor & Workforce Guidance, Standards and Regulations:

  • Maine released official reopening guidance for businesses based on sector. Details for each sector can be found here.

Economic Stimulus & Relief:

  • The Mills administration approved an additional $4 million in COVID-19 prevention and protection awards. (August 11) 
  • Maine farmers were awarded aid totaling $16 billion under the Coronavirus Food Assistance Program created through the CARES Act. (August 11) 
  • The Mills Administration announced that $1 million from the Coronavirus Relief Fund will be allocated towards expanding services to reduce racial and ethnic disparities during the COVID-19 pandemic. (July 30) 
  • Governor Mills announced rent assistance will double from $500 to $1,000 through the COVID-19 Rental Relief Program. (July 30) 
  • Pandemic Emergency Unemployment Compensation has granted an extra 13 weeks of unemployment benefits to those who have finished their normal weekly payments. (July 1) 
  • Governor Mills announced an extension to the states COVID-19 Rent Relief Program, which would assist renters for the months of April, May, and June. (June 4) 
  • Governor Mills signed an executive order forming an Economic Recovery Committee responsible for making “recommendations to mitigate the damage to Maine’s economy” as a result of the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. (May 6) 
  • The Maine Department of Labor announced the formation of the new Pandemic Unemployment Assistance Program, which provides unemployment eligibility to workers not typically covered by unemployment insurance, including self-employed individuals. (April 30) 
  • Governor Mills signed an executive order adjusting certain time frames and deadline requirements of Maine’s Loan Guarantee Program, which is intended to assist Maine residents “who have experienced a reduction in income” due to COVID-19. (April 21) 

Business Support & Resources:

  • The City of Portland and the Greater Portland Council of Governments announced the launch of three new emergency business loan grant programs for companies impacted by the coronavirus pandemic. (May 5)  
  • Governor Mills encouraged small businesses to apply for assistance through the Federal Paycheck Protection Program, which can provide loans for payroll, rent, and other operational expenses. (April 6) 
  • Governor Mills announced the creation of a new online resource, that offers residents and businesses ways they can address “immediate needs”: financial support, health care and medical assistance, small business aid, and “connections with family, friends, and neighbors.” (March 27) 

SOCIAL RESTRICTIONS

Reopening:

  • Governor Mills announced an adjustment to group limitations for outdoor activities, limiting large gatherings to 100 people. (July 29) 
  • Governor Mills issued an executive order strengthening enforcement of a face covering requirement in large retail businesses, restaurants, outdoor bars, tasting rooms, and lodging establishments in Maine’s more populous cities and coastal counties. (July 8) 
  • Governor Mills issued an executive order mandating the enforcement of Maine’s face covering requirements(July 2) 
  • The Mills Administration announced that visitors from Connecticut, New York, and New Jersey are exempt from the 14-day quarantine requirement or negative COVID-19 testing alternative. (July 1) 
  • Governor Mills announced Maine will postpone the reopening of indoor service at bars from its original date of July 1. (June 22) 
  • Governor Mills announced that indoor dining may resume in all Maine counties beginning June 17 in conjunction with strict health and safety protocols. (June 15) 
  • Governor Mills accelerated the start day that lodging establishments can begin serving out-of-state visitors to June 26. Visitors must meet either the state’s 14-day quarantine requirement or the new testing alternative. (June 12 
  • Governor Mills announced the Keep Maine Healthy Plan, an alternative to the state’s mandatory 14-day quarantine for travelers entering the state. Among other measures, the plan requires visitors to certify they have recently received a negative COVID-19 test. (June 9) 
  • Governor Mills announced an acceleration of business openings in certain counties, permitting bars, fitness centers, nail salons, and tattoo and piercing parlors in 13 counties to reopen with reduced capacity on June 12. (June 4) 

SCHOOL PLANNING

K-12:

  • The Mills administration announced new public health guidance for schools as students prepare to return to class in the fall, including symptom screenings, physical distancing, wearing face coverings, and practicing proper hand hygiene. (July 17) 
  • Maine Catholic schools announced they will hold in-person classes in the fall. (June 23) 
  • Maine’s Department of Education released an initial framework for schools reopening in the Fall. Details can be found here. (June 14)   

State Higher Education:

  • A list of Maine universities and colleges planning to reopen in the fall can be found here. 
  • Several community colleges in the state have announced a hybrid class set-up for the upcoming fall semester. (July 9) 
  • University of Maine students will return to campuses across the state for the fall semester. (July 1) 
  • A coalition of Maine colleges and universities released framework to guide Maine’s 38 colleges and universities as they start to make individual decisions about how and when to re-open in the Fall. Details can be found here. (June 4 

Giving Opportunities

April 20, 2020

Requesting medical supplies, including masks, hospital gowns, and coverings for workers.

Produced by Marathon Strategies, an independent PR firm that delivers intelligent communications and research solutions. For information, email Phil Singer at COVID-19@marathonstrategies.com