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Restaurant Capacity Caps Will Remain in Place in Massachusetts for at Least Two Additional Weeks

Gov. Charlie Baker announced the extension as COVID-19 infections continue to rise in the Bay State

Stock photograph of a chef in a restaurant kitchen TheBigPineapple/Getty Images

Restaurants, other small businesses, and many other industries throughout Massachusetts must continue to operate at reduced capacities, with Gov. Charlie Baker announcing in his January 7 update that restrictions put in place on December 26, 2020, and initially meant to expire on January 10, will be extended for an additional two weeks. Restaurants and other businesses in Massachusetts must continue to adhere to a 25 percent capacity cap until at least January 24.

In Boston, Mayor Marty Walsh recently announced that restaurants must adhere to a 25 percent capacity cap until at least January 27.

In his press briefing, Gov. Baker attributed the extension of restrictions to a sharp increase in the state’s COVID-19 infection rate.

“This trend, as we know, has been going on for weeks, driven in part by people letting their guard down in informal settings and over the holidays,” said Gov. Baker. “Before Thanksgiving, our seven day average of new cases was about 2,500 per day. Today, that figure has jumped by 91 percent, with a seven day average of new cases at almost 4,800.”

According to the state’s COVID-19 dashboard, there are currently 2,416 people hospitalized with COVID-19 in the Commonwealth. 442 patients are in intensive care units, and 281 are intubated. Massachusetts currently has an estimated 80,000 active cases, with a seven day average percent positivity rate of 8.25.

On Thanksgiving, hospitals in the state were occupied at 65 percent, while ICUs were occupied at 50 percent, according to Gov. Baker. Today, those numbers are 84 percent and 75 percent, respectively.

Massachusetts Shrinks Restaurant Capacity to 25% for at Least Two Weeks [EBOS]
Walsh Extends COVID-19 Pause in Boston, Warns of More Restrictions [WHDH]

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