In statewide address, Governor also limits state government services
Governor Eric J. Holcomb delivered a statewide address today to order that Hoosiers remain in their homes except when they are at work or for permitted activities, such as taking care of others, obtaining necessary supplies, and for health and safety. The order is in effect from March 25 to April 7.
“The next two weeks are critical if we are to slow the spread of COVID-19, and we must slow the spread. You must be part of the solution, not the problem,” said Gov. Holcomb.
The first positive case of COVID-19 in Indiana was reported on March 6. Since then the number of positive cases has increased on a near-daily basis, escalating as the capacity to test has grown. As of this morning, the number of tests completed in Indiana is 1,960, the number of positive cases is 259 and 7 deaths have been reported.
“I’m setting the example by sending state government personnel home to work to the maximum extent possible and closing our facilities to public interaction beginning Tuesday, for at least the next two weeks,” said Gov. Holcomb.
Beginning Tuesday, all state government offices will be closed to in-person public activity until at least April 7. This includes the Government Center complex in Indianapolis and other offices throughout the state, including the Bureau of Motor Vehicle branches. State employees will work remotely whenever possible and continue to provide core functions online and by phone. All public safety functions will continue.
In conjunction with the closures, Gov. Holcomb ordered an automatic extension of all state-issued licenses and will advise law enforcement to refrain from issuing citations for a driver’s license or registration that expires during this emergency.
The state, in conjunction with the city and all hospital systems in Marion County, has activated a comprehensive emergency operations center to maximize hospital capacity and provide joint coordination. The center is charged with tracking the inventory of all hospital beds, supplies and personnel as the number of COVID-19 patients grow.
“I am proud of our hospital systems that are participating in the initial phase of this process, Eskenazi Health, IU Health, Franciscan Health, Community Health Network, and Ascension,” said Gov. Holcomb. “Marion County is where we’ve seen the most community spread to date, but we will expand this model to other parts of the state.”
In all, Governor Holcomb issued four executive orders:
- EO 20-08. Stay at Home. Provides for essential and non-essential business and operations, infrastructure, government services, travel, and activities outside of one’s home. Click here for answers to frequently asked questions regarding the stay-at-home order.
- EO 20-09. Continuity of State Operations. Provides for the continuing operation of state government from 5 p.m. today through 8 a.m. April 7 with restricted access to government buildings and services.
- EO 20-10. Enforcement Directive Regarding Prohibition of In-Person Dining.
Holcomb directed that state and local boards of health and the Indiana Alcohol and Tobacco Commission (ATC) take all available administrative and enforcement actions against establishments that continue to offer in-house dining services, in violation of the governor’s executive order of March 16.
- Health departments will deliver letters ordering restaurants that continue to provide in-person dining to cease such operations. If they do not comply, fines will be levied.
- For restaurants with alcohol permits that continue to offer in-person dining, the ATC will issue an order in writing for the establishment to cease such operations. If the activity continues, the ATC will suspend the entity’s liquor license and will consider the non-compliance at the time of permit renewal.
- EO 20-11. Provisions for carryout consumption of alcohol.
Holcomb relaxed the sale of carryout alcoholic beverages for dining establishments. This includes establishments that allow for on-premises consumption only and those that are permitted carryout permits dependent on a percentage of on-premises sales.
Links to all executive orders may be found here: https://www.in.gov/gov/2384.htm
The complete text of Gov. Holcomb’s address may be found here: https://www.in.gov/gov/3233.htm
Link to the Stay-At-Home Order FAQ may be found here: https://www.in.gov/gov/3232.htm