Governor Mills Unveils Moving Maine Forward Plan for 2021 Tourism Season
The Moving Maine Forward plan maintains critical health and safety protocols that have protected Maine people over the past year, establishes a clear timeframe to increase capacity limits to support economic activity, and standardizes these limits across sectors by transitioning to a simple model based on percentage of capacity. The plan also revises Maine’s travel policies established last summer under the Keep Maine Healthy Program and sets a target reopening date of March 26 for indoor service at bars.
The new, multi-month plan, which reflects the stabilization of Maine’s COVID-19 metrics and progress in vaccinations, aims to provide clarity and predictability for Maine people and businesses to plan for the summer months and establish Maine as a safe place to visit.
The plan maintains the critical public health and safety protocols – like wearing face coverings, keeping physical distance, and conducting enhanced cleaning. Some items in the plan to note:
- Effective immediately, residents of New Hampshire, Vermont, Massachusetts and Rhode Island may travel to Maine without providing a negative COVID-19 test or quarantining. Compliance options for visitors from all other states have also been updated to include those who have completed a full COVID-19 vaccination.
- Beginning May 1st, Maine’s COVID-19 travel policy will automatically exempt all states, unless otherwise determined by the Maine CDC. If one or more states experiences a spike in cases of highly contagious COVID-19 variants, the Maine CDC will apply its test or quarantine requirements to travelers to and from that state.
The plan transitions Maine’s capacity limits from hard caps in most situations to a straightforward percentage of capacity model consistent across all sectors. The timeframe and capacity adjustments are as follows:
- For indoor gatherings, the percentage of capacity will increase to 50% starting March 26 and 75% starting May 24.
- For outdoor gatherings, the percentage of capacity will increase to 75% starting March 26 and 100% starting May 24.
- Those businesses that have more capacity under the current policy (50 people for indoor gatherings; 100 people for outdoor gatherings; or 5 people per 1,000 square feet) are permitted to maintain that standard until May 24.