More than 97% of the US population is currently under a stay-at-home or shelter-in-place order as the coronavirus pandemic continues to upend life as we know it. But worries for the economy — and people’s mental health — are raising the question: When will things go back to normal?
President Donald Trump has indicated many states can reopen by May 1, and shared federal guidelines for restarting the economy with governors.
Across the country, governors have been forming pacts. Those leaders are highlighting the importance of using science and advice from health officials rather than politics to choose when to reopen the economy. Expanded testing, tracking contacts of people who had the virus, improved treatment options and vaccine development are important, they say. However, 40 states and DC have ordered or recommended school closures through end of the academic year.
Here’s the latest on where states stand in their plans to reopen:
Gov. Kay Ivey says the existing stay at home order will remain in effect until April 30th.
Ivey said while she is as eager as anyone to get the economy moving on all cylinders, it must be done in a responsible way.
“Getting our economy up and running is not as simple as flipping a switch,” she added.
Ivey also said the state needs to expand their testing before resuming normal economic activity.
Gov. Mike Dunleavy is allowing personal services businesses and restaurants in most parts of Alaska to reopen Friday, but with restrictions.
Hair salons can only admit customers by reservation. Restaurants will have to keep distances between tables and can’t exceed 25% of their normal capacity.
The city of Anchorage is delaying the new rules until Monday.
Dunleavy says Alaska is not in a rush to reopen, but is responding to a low infection rate in the state and a belief that they can quickly isolate any future outbreaks.
“You’ll see the numbers go up,” he said, “but you want to look at the bed capacity, the numbers recovered, and a whole host of other metrics.”
Dunleavy has said that Alaskans can again schedule elective surgeries for on or after May 4 and visit their doctors for non-urgent needs.
Gov. Doug Ducey says the stay-at-home order will remain in effect until April 30.
However, elective surgeries can resume from May 1.
“There are three options around this executive order right now. The first is to let it expire. The second is to extend. And the third, to modify it with changes and improvements that reflect the situation on the ground,” Ducey said.
Gov. Asa Hutchinson says he plans to open specific businesses over the next few weeks.
If those openings go well, social distancing protocols continue to be adhered to and the number of Covid-19 cases don’t go up, the state will open up even more businesses on May 4th.
Simple elective surgeries will be allowed from Monday.
Gov. Gavin Newsom issued a stay-at-home order on March 19 that has no set end date.
However, the state will begin allowing scheduled surgeries. Newsom emphasized the surgeries being phased back in are important medical procedures like heart surgery or removing cancerous tumors that should not be neglected. Elective procedures like cosmetic surgery are still not a priority.
This will begin the first phase of a return to normalcy in California.
However, California is pulling back on issuing permits for events and activities, including protests, at all state facilities, according to the California Highway Patrol.
Newsom announced a joint Western States Pact with Oregon Governor Kate Brown and Washington Governor Jay Inslee on April 13.
Gov. Jared Polis said the state’s stay-at-home order will be replaced April 27 by a “safer at home” phase, in which residents still are urged to stay home as much as possible. High-risk populations, such as the elderly, are asked to stay home except when it’s absolutely necessary to leave.
Starting April 27, retail businesses with curbside delivery can reopen and elective medical procedures can resume. Businesses such as personal training and dog grooming can reopen with social distancing.
Connecticut Gov. Ned Lamont extended the mandatory shutdown in the state until May 20.
But, Lamont said more testing is needed so the state can re-open by that date. He praised the federal government for loosening regulations on testing ingredients so they can expand testing more quickly.
The state has also ordered tens of thousands of “fever-meters” thermometers, which Lamont says will be “incredibly helpful” when folks go back to work at big manufacturers where temperatures can be taken before entering the buildings.
Connecticut has joined a coalition with the Northeastern states of New Jersey, New York, Pennsylvania, Delaware, Rhode Island and Massachusetts to coordinate the reopening of the economy, according to a news release from New York Governor Andrew Cuomo’s office.
Gov. John Carney issued a statewide stay-at-home order that will remain until May 15 or until the “public health threat is eliminated.”
Delaware has joined a coalition with the Northeastern states of New York, New Jersey, Connecticut, Massachusetts, Pennsylvania, and Rhode Island to coordinate the reopening of the economy, according to a press release from NY Governor Andrew Cuomo’s office.
The governor said April 17 that once the state reopens, social distancing, face coverings in public, washing hands, limited gatherings and vulnerable populations sheltering in place will remain.
District of Columbia
Washington, DC Mayor Muriel E. Bowser extended a stay-at-home order until May 15.
“I don’t know if that means we will be open on May 16, but it will be a point for us to check in. And if we need to extend it beyond that, we certainly will,” Bowser said during April 15 media briefing.
Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis issued a stay-at-home order for Floridians until April 30.
But, DeSantis is defending the decision made by local leaders to reopen the beaches as he awaits recommendations from Reopen Task Force
The reopening of the beaches in Jacksonville Beach, Florida, generated criticism and also generated the Twitter hashtag #FloridaMorons.
“My hats off to the people of Jacksonville and Northeast Florida for doing a great job,” DeSantis said. “And for those who try to say you’re morons, I would take you over the folks who are criticizing you any day of the week and twice on Sunday.”
The Florida Keys will not reopen to visitors until at least June, county commissioners said April 24.
Gov. Brian Kemp started to ease restrictions April 24.
Gyms, fitness centers, bowling alleys, body art studios, barbers, hair and nail salons, estheticians and massage therapists were able to reopen April 24, with certain rules. Theaters and restaurants can reopen April 27, also with caveats.
The caveats include social distancing and screening employees for illness.
Bars, nightclubs and music venues will remain closed, for now.
Gov. David Ige issued a stay-at-home order for Hawaii residents that will last through at least April 30.
The state doesn’t satisfy federal guidelines for phased reopening, one of which is a 14-day downward trend in the number of coronavirus cases, Ige said April 16.
The city of Honolulu has said its own stay-at-home order will last through May 31.
Gov. Brad Little amended his order April 15 to allow for some businesses and facilities to reopen for curbside pickup, drive-in and drive-thru service and for mailed or delivery services. It is now effective through the end of the month.
The governor issued an “Order to Self-Isolate” which will expire on April 30 unless extended.
Little said that the measures were working and Idaho is “truly seeing a flattening of the curve.”
“Our goal is for most businesses to open after the end of the month, but with the understanding that it may not be possible if there’s an upward trend in severe Covid-19 cases in Idaho between now and then,” Little said.
Gov. J.B. Pritzker announced he is modifying the state’s stay-at-home order on May 1 through May 30 based on modeling that has analyzed the data from the last two months.
“Next week, I intend to sign an extension of our stay at home order with some modifications through Saturday, May 30,” he said.
“I know how badly we all want our normal lives back,” he said. But, he added it is necessary to keep going a little while longer to finish the job.
The governor says his team is finalizing the next steps for safely moving toward reopening in phases by building out testing and launching contact tracing initiatives.
Gov. Eric Holcomb on April 17 extended the stay-at-home order through May 1.
The extension will give the state additional time to look into what the best way is to reopen sectors of the economy, Holcomb said. He said he would work with the state hospital association to see when elective surgeries could resume.
Indiana is part of a Midwest coalition of states looking at reopening possibilities
Gov. Kim Reynolds has not declared a stay-at-home order. Reynolds issued a State of Public Health Disaster Emergency on March 17, ordering all nonessential businesses to close until April 30.
The governor formed an Iowa economic recovery task force consisting of state leaders and private business leaders and announced plans to discuss with education leaders about the possibility of reopening schools.
Reynolds on April 16 announced that residents of the region of the state with the most cases, where there was an outbreak at a food processing plant, cannot get together until April 30.
“You may gather only with members or your immediate household,” Reynolds said, adding there were a few exceptions like religious services with 10 worshippers or fewer.
Gov. Laura Kelly issued a stay-at-home order, which has been extended until May 3.
She has signed an executive order to ease license restrictions on healthcare workers.
Kelly said when it comes to reopening the economy, it “will be a gradual rollout” and “public safety must be paramount in our minds” when doing so.
The governor said she would like to see the number of positive cases “decline for roughly 14 days before we actually start the recovery process,” but a decline at the “local level will be a major factor as well,” she added.
Gov. Andy Beshear is taking steps to reopen the healthcare sector in the state.
Kentucky will begin phase one on April 27, which will include restarting diagnostic, radiology, non-urgent, in-person, office and ambulatory visits.
“We are also going to allow pre-aesthesia testing services to restart in preparation for the surgical ramp up,” Beshear said.
Gov. Beshear had issued a “Healthy at Home” order March 25 that is in effect indefinitely.
Gov. John Bel Edwards extended the state’s stay-at-home order through April 30.
The governor announced on April 16 the formation of an economic recovery task force.
“They’re going to look at our economy, make recommendations to make our businesses more resilient so that we can open them up, get businesses open, get workers back to work, but do so in a way that adequately affects public health,” he said.
“We are in the midst of one of the greatest public health crises this world has seen in more than a century,” Mills said in a news release. “This virus will continue to sicken people across our state; our cases will only grow, and more people will die. I say this to be direct, to be as honest with you as I can. Because saving lives will depend on us.”
Mills said she wished she didn’t have to extend the state of emergency, but “the continued spread of the virus demands a sustained response by the State.”
Maine is in touch with neighbors New Hampshire and Vermont on reopening measures, the governor said April 14.
Gov. Larry Hogan will introduce his state’s reopening plan April 24.
Hogan described the plan, “Maryland Strong Roadmap to Recovery” as “a safe, effective and gradual plan, which will allow us to reopen, to rebuild and to recover just as soon as it is safe for us to do so.”
He had issued a statewide stay-at-home order on March 30.
Gov. Charlie Baker issued an emergency order requiring all nonessential businesses to close facilities until May 4.
Massachusetts has joined a coalition with the Northeastern states of New York, New Jersey, Connecticut, Pennsylvania, Delaware, and Rhode Island to coordinate the reopening of the economy, according to a press release from NY Governor Andrew Cuomo’s office.
Baker told residents of his state that officials have begun conversations around reopening the state but there’s still a lot of work that needs to be done before a plan is set into motion.
The state will need to have testing, tracing, isolation and quarantine procedures in place to reopen, the governor said.
“I think it’s going to be really important that we all pay attention to what the others are up to, and to make sure that nobody does anything that puts somebody in a really bad spot, because they just weren’t thinking about what that impact was going to be on some other part of the Northeastern part of the US,” he said.
Gov. Gretchen Whitmer on April 24 extended the state’s stay-at-home order through May 15 — but also relaxed restrictions so some businesses can reopen and the public can participate in more outdoor activities like golf and motorized boating.
The latest order allow landscapers, lawn-service companies, plant nurseries and bike repair shops to resume operating, subject to social-distancing rules.
Big-box retailers will no longer have to close off garden centers and areas dedicated to selling paint and carpet.
People also are allowed, under the latest order, to travel between their residences, though it isn’t encouraged. They will be allowed to use motorized boats and play golf (but not golf carts) in adherence with social distancing protocols. State parks, which have been accessible during the health emergency, will remain open.
Gov. Tim Walz says he will allow some businesses to reopen, beginning April 27. This will allow 80,000 to 100,000 people in the industrial, manufacturing and office settings to go back to work.
“Today’s order was developed with consultation with hundreds of businesses, with labor groups, with worker’s organizations, and with public health experts,” he said.
“None of this would be done without a sign off of independent health experts,” Walz stressed.
The governor said to reopen, businesses must create, share and implement a Covid-19 preparedness plan that outlines measures they are taking to ensure social distancing and worker hygiene.
He added that businesses must also engage in health screenings of employees and ensure that sick workers stay at home.
Gov. Tate Reeves says he will likely let the state’s shelter-in-place order expire April 27.
Instead Reeves suggested he might narrow the directive to apply only to the state’s high-risk population, such as the elderly and those with pre-existing conditions.
Reeves said April 17 the state will begin relaxing some of the restrictions on nonessential businesses by allowing them to offer services via drive-thru, curbside or delivery.
Gov. Mike Parson on April 16 extended the stay-at-home order through May 3.
The governor’s office said they will work with hospitals, healthcare providers, health officials, and business leaders to develop a reopening plan.
“Our reopening efforts will be careful, deliberate, and done in phases,” he said.
Gov. Steve Bullock has announced a gradual and phased reopening of the state beginning April 26 for individuals, and extending to businesses April 27.
Main street and retail businesses can become operational on or after April 27 if they adhere to requirements to limit capacity and maintain strict physical distancing.
Restaurants, bars, breweries, and distilleries can begin providing some in-establishment services beginning May 4.
Businesses where groups gather without the ability to social distance including movie theaters, gyms and other places of assembly will remain closed.
Montana’s travel quarantine will remain in effect, and out of state travelers and residents arriving from another state or country back to Montana for non-work related purposes are required to quarantine for 14 days.
Gov. Pete Ricketts issued the “21 Days to Stay Home and Stay Healthy” campaign on April 10. Ricketts ordered that all hair salons, tattoo parlors and strip clubs be closed through April 30 and all organized group sports canceled until May 31.
Nebraska is one of the states that has not issued a stay-at-home order to limit the spread of coronavirus nationwide. Ricketts has not made any plans to reopen the state.
The state’s campaign is based on six rules: staying home, socially distancing at work, shopping alone and only once a week, helping kids social distance, helping seniors stay at home and exercising at home.
Gov. Steve Sisolak says, “we are clearly not ready to open.”
Sisolak is speaking out against comments by the mayor of Las Vegas that it is time for businesses — including casinos — to get back to work.
Meanwhile, the largest union representing Las Vegas casino workers is calling Las Vegas Mayor Carolyn Goodman’s push to reopen “outrageous.”
The Culinary Union says it supports Gov. Sisolak’s decision to keep casinos closed, adding, “The Culinary Union is majority women and people of color, and we are not expendable.”
The governor issued a stay-at-home order that expires April 30.
Gov. Chris Sununu issued a stay-at-home order until May 4.
Sununu told reporters on April 16 that he’ll decide on whether to extend the order before May 4.
“We want to give people some flexibility and be able to plan,” Sununu said. He said that applies to restrictions on nonessential businesses and public gatherings.
Gov. Phil Murphy issued a stay-at-home order on March 21 that has no specific end date.
New Jersey has joined a coalition with the Northeastern states of New York, Connecticut, Pennsylvania, Delaware, Rhode Island and Massachusetts to coordinate the reopening of the economy, according to a news release from New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s office.
“No one has given more thought or is more eager to restart our economy than I am, but if we don’t get the sequencing right, we put more lives at risk. The only path to a sustainable economic recovery is through a strong healthcare recovery,” Murphy said in a news release.
“A coordinated, regional approach, informed by a multi-state council of experts, will help us avoid a major setback with potentially disastrous consequences.”
Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham extended the state’s emergency order to April 30.
She said Thursday her state is evaluating the federal guidelines but authorities cannot put the “cart before the horse.”
“Please know that my administration is working doggedly to develop robust economic recovery plans alongside a plan for a thoughtful, staged and flexible reopening of our state — and the moment we can safely implement those plans, they will be implemented with the same dedication and focus that we are using to contain this pandemic,” the governor said.
New York has joined a coalition with the Northeastern states of New Jersey, Connecticut, Pennsylvania, Delaware, and Rhode Island and Massachusetts to coordinate the reopening of the economy, according to a press release from Cuomo’s office.
The governor has not come to any decision on when businesses will reopen and said he rejected “any elected official or any expert who says I can tell you what’s going to happen four weeks from today.”
The governor said April 16 there are factors for when a business can reopen, including how essential it is and what is the risk of catching the virus.
Gov. Roy Cooper extended a stay-at-home order, now set to go through May 8.
On April 23, Cooper said the state could open in three phases after May 8, if coronavirus cases continue to trend downward:
•In Phase 1, stay-at-home orders would remain, but some businesses would be allowed to open.
•Phase 2 would lift stay-at-home orders, though vulnerable populations would be encouraged to stay home. Places of worship, bars and restaurants could operate with reduced capacities.
•Phase 3 would ease restrictions for vulnerable populations, but also allow increased capacities at businesses and public gatherings.
Gov. Doug Burgum says the White House’s guidelines to reopen are “inputs” and the decision to reopen resides with the state.
“Whatever the White House guidelines, whatever other states are doing, all those things are inputs, but the decision making resides here in North Dakota and we’ll do what’s best for the state of North Dakota,” Burgum said.
North Dakota is one of the states that has not issued a stay-at-home order. Only schools, restaurants, fitness centers, movie theaters and salons were shut down.
Burgum had said he hoped some businesses can start to reopen May 1.
Gov. Mike DeWine issued a statewide stay-at-home order that will remain in place until May 1.
He said April 16 that on that date the state will begin the first phase of reopening.
“We are working on (specifics) and will be talking about this in the days ahead. We will be dealing with the schools shortly, probably early next week,” he said.
As for events with big crowds, he said, “We need to take this a few weeks at a time to see where we are.”
Gov. Kevin Stitt says some businesses can reopen Friday.
The plan involves three phases, and Stitt cautioned “we will not move to the next phase until the data tells us that it’s safe to do so.”
Starting on Friday, personal care businesses can reopen for appointments.
Restaurants, dining rooms, movie theaters, sporting venues and gyms will reopen the following week if they maintain “strict social distancing and sanitation protocols.”
Bars, however, will still be closed.
Gov. Kate Brown issued an executive order directing Oregonians to stay at home that “remains in effect until ended by the governor.”
Brown announced a joint Western States Pact with California Gov. Gavin Newsom and Washington Gov. Jay Inslee on April 13.
“This is not a light switch going on or off,” Brown told CNN’s Anderson Cooper on April 14. “This is going to be making a change, testing it, modeling it, seeing whether it works, and then if it does, you can make another change.”
Brown said she would not ease restrictions before seeing five components in place: declining growth rate of active cases, sufficient personal protective equipment, surge capacity in hospitals, increased test capacity, contact tracing and isolating positive cases, and strategies to protect vulnerable communities.
Gov. Tom Wolf wants to reopen the state in three phases beginning May 8th.
The phases will be broken down into three colors red, yellow and green, and will follow the data, according to Governor Wolf.
He had issued stay-at-home orders across the state until April 30.
Pennsylvania had joined a coalition with the Northeastern states of New Jersey, New York, Connecticut, Delaware, Rhode Island and Massachusetts to coordinate the reopening of the economy, according to a press release from New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s office.
Gov. Gina Raimondo issued an emergency declaration extending the state’s stay-at-home order to last until May 8.
The state has now announced new efforts to reopen parks and beaches.
“It’s my hope that we will be able to enjoy our parks and beaches in the month of May,” Raimondo said. “We’ll be reopening them, like everything else, in a staged fashion, slowly, with new restrictions, incrementally, leading up to an eventual complete reopening.”
Rhode Island has joined a coalition with the Northeastern states of New Jersey, New York, Connecticut, Delaware, Pennsylvania, and Massachusetts to coordinate the reopening of the economy, according to a press release from NY Governor Andrew Cuomo’s office.
Gov. Henry McMaster announced that at 5 p.m. on April 20, some retail stores will be allowed to open, including those selling furniture, books, music, flowers, clothing and accessories, as well as department stores, sporting goods stores and flea markets. They will be allowed to open at 20% capacity, or 5 people per 1,000 square feet.
Beaches are allowed to reopen to public access beginning April 21 at noon, McMaster said — though local governments are allowed to keep them closed.
McMaster’s “State of Emergency” executive order is in place through at least April 27.
Gov. Kristi L. Noem has not issued a stay-at-home order.
“We have seen such an outstanding call to action among the people of South Dakota that we actually have more people staying home than many of the other states that have put in shelter in place orders and have put together directives to tell people they can’t leave their homes,” she said at a town hall hosted by South Dakota Public Broadcasting on April 15.
Gov. Bill Lee said restaurants will be allowed to open on Monday and retail outlets next Wednesday at 50% capacity.
“We are working around the clock to get Tennesseans safely back to work in 89 of our counties with the majority of businesses in a position to begin opening their doors next week,” Lee said.
However, he added, “Not every industry will be in a position to open safely immediately.”
A few state parks will not open.
Gov. Greg Abbott ordered all Texans to stay home through April 30.
Instead of kicking off a full restart, the Texas governor announced April 17 that a group of medical and economic experts will guide him through a series of incremental steps aimed at slowly reopening the state’s economy.
“Opening in Texas must occur in stages,” Abbott said during his briefing Friday. “Obviously, not all businesses can open all at once on May 1.” A premature opening of private businesses, he said, would risk further outbreaks and “be more likely to set us back, rather than to propel us forward.”
Gov. Gary Herbert extended the state’s “Stay Safe, Stay Home” directive through May 1. Schools will be closed for the remainder of the year.
Utah has not issued a stay-at-home mandate.
People have been asked to stay home as much as possible and maintain 6 feet from others when out. Restaurants are not allowed to have dining rooms open. School are closed.
Herbert said the state is making plans for how and when restrictions will be lifted, but continued to urge citizens to stay home.
Gov. Phil Scott issued a “Stay Home, Stay Safe” order that has been extended until May 15.
Scott on April 17 outlined a five-point plan to reopen the state while continuing to fight the spread of the coronavirus during a news conference.
Part of that plan includes certain businesses such as construction, home appraisers, property management and municipal clerks to return to work on April 20, with social distancing measures in place. These businesses will be allowed a maximum of two workers.
On May 1, farmers markets will be able to operate with strict social distancing guidelines in place, Scott said.
Gov. Ralph Northam issued a stay-at-home order effective until June 10.
“We are in a public health crisis, and we need everyone to take this seriously and act responsibly,” Northam said in a news release. “Our message to Virginians is clear: stay home.”
Northam has made it clear that the state must make decisions based on “science, public health expertise, and data,” Secretary of Health and Human Resources Daniel Carey said.
Gov. Jay Inslee extended Washignton’s stay-at-home order until May 4, saying “We are yet to see the full toll of this virus in our state and the modeling we’ve seen could be much worse if we don’t continue what we’re doing to slow the spread.”
Inslee announced a joint Western States Pact with California Gov. Gavin Newsom and Oregon Gov. Kate Brown on April 13.
Before deciding on when to reopen the state, Inslee said during an interview with Katy Tur on MSNBC that there would need to be an “enormous expansions” of coronavirus testing capabilities, a way to trace the spread in communities, and “for the president to recognize that these decisions really are going to be made by governors.”
Gov. Jim Justice issued a stay-at-home order until further notice.
“That curve is the curve we’re looking for to be able to look at the possibility of backing things off and going forward. We’re not there yet,” Justice said during a news conference April 13.
Despite numbers suggesting that the state is starting to do better, Justice said it wasn’t time to relax social distancing measures or asking people to stop staying home.
“I’m proud of each and every one of you so keep following the guidelines, stay at home, social distance, practice good hygiene and when the time comes, and it will, we’ll cross the finish line together as West Virginians,” Justice said in a news release.
Gov. Tony Evers has extended his state’s stay-at-home order to expire May 26, according to a statement from the governor’s office.
The extension also loosens some restrictions on businesses. Golf courses are allowed to reopen, and public libraries and arts and crafts stores may offer curbside pickup, the April 16 announcement said.
Gov. Mark Gordon submitted a request asking for a federal disaster declaration for Wyoming on April 9. Wyoming is one of the states without a stay-at-home order.
“Though Wyoming has not reached the dire situations of some states, this declaration will help us to prepare and mobilize resources when we need them,” Governor Gordon said in a news release. “I look forward to a swift response to our request from the federal government.”
Gordon extended statewide public health orders through April 30 and issued a directive requiring travelers to quarantine for 14 days.