By CBS Baltimore Staff

ANNAPOLIS, Md. (WJZ) — Annapolis Mayor Gavin Buckley is encouraging outdoor dining and events in response to a rising number of COVID-19 infections in Maryland, the city said Thursday.

Buckley signed a local state of emergency intended to help the city combat the spread of COVID-19. It includes plans to reinstate temporary permits for outdoor dining in parking lots, similar to the permits issued in 2020 and 2021 to create so-called “recovery zones.”

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“We need to pull together as a community,” the mayor said in a statement. “Our police, fire, and health care resources are stretched thin and they need the help of residents to help us get to the other side of this wave of infections.”

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Buckley recommends that families who are planning to host holiday get-togethers gather outdoors. He’s also asking residents to wear masks in public, get tested and vaccinated and practice social distancing.

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He’s also calling for restaurants to bring back outdoor dining to keep residents safe.

CBS Baltimore Staff