Gov. Holcomb announces restrictions on social gatherings for many counties as surge in coronavirus cases continues

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INDIANAPOLIS– Indiana Gov. Eric Holcomb said Wednesday that beginning on Nov. 15 and going for at least a month, a new executive order will be issued targeting restrictions for orange and red counties in the state’s color-coded map.

He said we’ll be exiting Stage 5 of his “Back on Track” plan. Instead of doing stages, restrictions will happen on a county-by-county basis.

Here’s a look at the current map as of 3 p.m. Wednesday. Only five counties are not listed as orange or red.

Restrictions for orange counties:

  • Social events limited to 50 people
  • Special events of more than 50 people will need approval from the local health department.
  • Attendance at winter indoor K-12 extracurricular and co-curricular events is limited to 25% capacity
  • Capacity in common areas and break rooms should be reduced and users should be socially distanced
  • Community recreational sports leagues and tournaments may continue with attendance limited to participants, required personnel and parents/guardians only.

Restrictions for red counties:

  • Social gatherings limited to 25 people
  • Special, seasonal or commercial events planned for more than 25 people need approval from the local health department. Events are not advised to be held. College and professional sports are included.
  • Attendance at winter indoor K-12 extracurricular activities, including IHSAA sports, is limited to participants, support personnel and parents/guardians.
  • Local officials may consider limiting hours for the operation of bars, nightclubs and restaurants.
  • Community recreational sports leagues and tournaments may continue with participants, required personnel and parents/guardians only.

Face coverings will continue to be required statewide. Holcomb said churches and religious gatherings will remain exempt from restrictions.

Holcomb urged Hoosiers to keep holiday gatherings small, and shorter in time than normal. He recommended keeping them to only members of your household.

The governor said he doesn’t want businesses to have to shut down again, and these efforts will help prevent further restrictions.

“Unfortunately, too many here and across the country have let their guard down, either not thinking they will get it, or not caring if they did,” Holcomb said. “Rather than doing the things that we have been doing that allowed us to open restaurants, event sites, too many have said, ‘We’ll just ride it out and if I get it, so be it.'”

He said in Indiana, the number of hospitalized patients is at an all-time high, and hospital officials expect their numbers to double over the coming weeks.

The state is providing $20 million for grants to help local communities put the restrictions in place.

The state says the Pfizer vaccine is the first one they are expecting to receive. Regardless of when they get the vaccine, it won’t be administered until the emergency authorization is done and its review is complete.

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