Northam extends business closures to May 8

Virginia covid-19
(© Ingo Menhard –

Gov. Ralph Northam has extended Executive Order Fifty-Three for two weeks, through Friday, May 8.

Executive Order Fifty-Three, originally signed on March 24, bans crowds of more than 10 people; closes recreation, entertainment, and personal care businesses; and limits restaurants to offering takeout and delivery services only.

“As we have seen from our data and models, social distancing is working, and we are slowing the spread of this virus,” Northam said. “But it is too early to let up. By extending this order to keep certain businesses closed or restricted, we can continue to evaluate the situation and plan for how to eventually ease restrictions so that our businesses may operate without endangering public health.”

According to the Virginia Department of Health, there are 6,500 confirmed COVID-19 cases in the Commonwealth, with 1,048 hospitalized.

The number of hospitalized accounts for about 5.8 percent of the state’s total hospital-bed capacity, with 30.9 percent of the state’s hospital beds unused.

Northam’s Executive Order Fifty-Five, which directs Virginians to stay home unless they must leave for essential services, remains in effect until June 10. A Frequently Asked Questions guide about Virginia’s Stay at Home order can be found here.

Story by Chris Graham

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