ANNAPOLIS, Md. (WJZ) — Businesses and individuals who don’t comply with Gov. Hogan’s order to shut down dine-in service could be fined up to $5,000 or spend a year in jail.
The governor announced an executive order Monday restricting public gatherings and business operations due to COVID-19, and state police and local law enforcement agencies say they will be involved, when needed, to enforce the governor’s executive order in response to the COVID-19 pandemic.
His order mandated that all businesses shut down dining-in and restrict themselves to carry-out or delivery options only in an effort to minimize gatherings of 250 or more people.
Food trucks, barber shops, salons and funeral facilities can all remain open but there cannot be gatherings of more than 50 people, the executive order said.
Food trucks, barber shops and salons, funeral facilities—all can remain open but there cannot be gatherings of more than 50 people. State guidance below ⬇️ @wjz #coronavirus #Maryland pic.twitter.com/w7OzLu59WW
— Mike Hellgren (@HellgrenWJZ) March 17, 2020
State police said they will be responding to complaints for businesses who do not comply, working with local authorities.
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“Depending on the call and location, we will first make contact with the owner or manager of the establishment. If voluntary compliance does not occur, we will take enforcement action, in cooperation with the local state’s attorney.” said Maryland State Police Superintendent Cl. Woodrow W. Jones III.
The superintendent said that if the violation at an establishment involves customers or those who have gathered and they don’t leave when asked, they could be arrested.
“If the violation at an establishment or gathering involves customers or simply individuals who have gathered and voluntary compliance has not occurred, appropriate action will be taken that could ultimately result in the arrest of the individuals involved.” Jones said in the statement.
Any violation of the executive order is punishable for a fine of up to $5,000 or one-year in jail- or both, Jones said.