Marion County to enter next stage of reopening plan June 19

Marion County does not plan to enter Stage 4 of the state’s pandemic reopening plan until June 19—a week later than most of the rest of the state.

Indianapolis Mayor Joe Hogsett and Marion County Public Health Department Director Dr. Virginia Caine announced the decision Thursday afternoon, one day after Gov. Eric Holcomb said he would enact Stage 4 of the plan at 12:01 a.m. Friday, two days earlier than previously planned.

Individual counties are allowed to enact more restrictive guidelines than the state’s. Marion, Lake and Cass counties have been following a slower reopening timeline than the rest of Indiana.

Movie theaters, bowling alleys and similar facilities will be able to open that day at 50% capacity. Museums and the zoo will also be able to open at 50% capacity, and bars will open at 50% capacity.

Retail stores and malls will be able to operate at full capacity, and restaurant dining rooms can operate at 75% capacity.

The city county building will reopen to the public, but visitors will be required to wear a facemask inside.

Caine said Marion County’s health data has been trending in the right direction: the number of new cases a day, emergency room visits with COVID-19 symptoms, hospital admissions and the percent of positive cases have continued to decline.

As of yesterday, Marion County has had 10,464 positive cases and 634 deaths. More than 62,000 people have been tested.

“Our progress has occurred because the Marion County community has been following preventative measures that we need in order to safeguard ourselves, our loved ones, our colleagues and our friends,” she said.  “We’re definitely going in the right direction, significantly.”

She encouraged residents to continue practicing social distancing, wear a face covering and to disinfect surfaces frequently.

Hogsett said Marion County officials chose to announce the next stage a week ahead of time to give businesses time to prepare. Previously, some business owners had been critical of Caine and Hogsett for not giving them enough notice about when Marion County would enter the next phase of Indiana’s Back on Track plan.

Here’s what happens under the next stage of Marion County’s plan:

– Retail stores and malls may operate at full capacity with social distancing guidelines in place;

– Salons, spas and tattoo parlors may operate by appointment only with employees and customers wearing face coverings;

– Restaurant dining room service may operate at 75% capacity with social distancing;

– Social gatherings of up to 250 people may take place following CDC social distancing guidelines;

– Bar seating in restaurants may open at 50% capacity;

– Bars and nightclubs may open at 50% capacity adhering to social distancing guidelines;

– Public access to government buildings will vary by building. Mask are required to enter the City-County Building;

– Professional office building employees may resume work at full capacity;

– Indoor religious service may operate at 75% capacity with mandatory face coverings;

– Cultural, entertainment, and tourism sites may open at a 50% capacity. This includes museums, zoos, aquariums, and similar facilities;

– Movie theaters, bowling alleys and similar facilities may open at 50% capacity, adhering to social distancing guidelines;

– Community youth and adult recreational games and leagues may resume with restrictions;

– Gyms and fitness centers may operate at 100% capacity with guidelines;

– Raceways may open at with limited spectators;

– Amusement parks, water parks and like facilities may open at 50% capacity.

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8 thoughts on “Marion County to enter next stage of reopening plan June 19

  1. Thank you for taking time to make us safe, especially for those who must work in close proximity to the public and who may have pre-existing medical conditions.

    Evidence is growing that face masks greatly reduce infections. I wish they were required everywhere. That’s the only way infected persons who don’t yet know they’re infected can prevent infecting others. A mask is a small price to pay compared to lost wages, hospitalizations, permanent organ damage, and/or death.

    We also need a massive increase in testing to catch and contain the virus and prevent another economic shutdown. Our state is one of the largest manufacturing states in the country. We can do this, so why don’t we? With a million plus students going back to K-12 schools this fall, they can easily spread infections to parents and grandparents in every precinct of the state. Students and school staff should be tested weekly, with those testing positive sent home to quarantine. College students in dorms, Greek housing, and crowded lecture halls should be tested weekly too. Classrooms are germ factories where extra precautions are necessary. It’ll take leadership and persuasion to get this done, and it’ll be well worth it to save lives, businesses, and our economy.

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