Mayor Brandon M. Scott Signs Executive Order to Maintain Baltimore’s Common Sense, Local COVID-19 Mandates

Crest of the City of Baltimore

Brandon M. Scott
Baltimore City
250 City Hall - Baltimore Maryland 21202
(410) 396-3835 - Fax: (410) 576-9425



BALTIMORE, MD (Friday, March 12, 2021) — Due to public health indicators and the City’s practice of evaluating mandates over a four-week period, Baltimore Mayor Brandon M. Scott issued an Executive Order that maintains the City’s current public health mandates. The Executive Order took effect at 6:00 a.m. EST today, March 12, before the updated State of Maryland order goes into place. 

Monday, March 22, 2021 will mark four weeks since current Baltimore mandates have been enacted. The Mayor and Health Commissioner plan to evaluate the data and make a final decision regarding the City’s path forward next week.

“Baltimore City will stay the course and make a responsible decision at the pace we originally established. Although the latest trends in public health data are promising, Baltimore is not in the clear just yet,” said Mayor Brandon M. Scott. “On the eve of St. Patrick’s Day, I am calling on Baltimore City residents to consider the health and safety of your neighbors and loved ones who are still navigating the ongoing pandemic. Please avoid large gatherings, practice physical distancing, and continue to wear a mask.”

Under the Executive Order, Baltimore’s existing local COVID-19 mandates remain in place: 

  • Gatherings: Gatherings will need to comply with any relevant capacity based upon the space in which they are located.
  • Religious Facilities: Limited to 25 percent of maximum occupancy.
  • Retail Establishments and Malls: Limited to 25 percent of maximum occupancy.
  • Indoor Recreational Establishments: All indoor recreation sites except hookah/cigar lounges will be allowed to reopen at 25 percent capacity.
  • Outdoor Recreational Establishments: Limited to 25 percent of maximum occupancy.
  • Organized Amateur Sports: Allowed with certain guidelines in place.
  • Fitness Centers: Limited to 25 percent of maximum occupancy. Fitness classes are allowed — 10 person limit or 25 percent capacity, whichever is greater. Social distancing and masks required.
  • Casinos: Limited to 25 percent of maximum occupancy. Dining areas allowed to reopen, following the requirements of food service establishments.
  • Libraries: Limited to 25 percent maximum occupancy.
  • Museums, Zoos, Aquariums: Limited to 25 percent of maximum occupancy.
  • Foodservice Establishments: Outdoor dining can resume at 50 percent capacity. If space is tented, the tent needs to be open on all sides. Indoor dining can resume at 25 percent capacity. Bars without food licenses will also be allowed to reopen — 50 percent outdoors, 25 percent indoors. 
    • The one-hour time limit is removed.
    • Carry-out, delivery, and drive-through service may continue. 
    • All foodservice establishments must keep a log of contact information for patrons and staff for contact tracing purposes.
  • Personal Services: Limited to 25 percent of maximum occupancy.
    • Staff must wear face coverings at all times while indoors. 
    • Services must be provided on an appointment-only basis, and a log must be kept of names of customers, staff providing services, and other residents who enter the shop.
  • Theaters and Outdoor Entertainment Venues: Live streaming of performances is allowed. Live entertainment is permitted as long as performers wear masks and adhere to social distancing.
    • Indoor theaters are limited to the lesser of 25 percent occupancy or 100 persons.
    • Outdoor entertainment venues are limited to the lesser of 25 percent occupancy or 250 persons.

Recent data indicate a plateau in new cases per day (between 90-95 new cases per day) since February 25th. Death rates over the past 4 weeks have remained steady between 1-3 deaths per day and hospitalizations remain elevated with 84 percent ICU utilization and 87 percent acute care utilization. 

The March 12, 2021 Executive Order invokes Baltimore City’s local emergency powers to save lives and prevent further exposure to COVID-19. This authority is derived from the Maryland Public Safety Act, the Baltimore City Emergency Operations Plan, the Baltimore City Health Code, and the Code of Maryland Regulations (COMAR).

Read the Mayor’s March 12 Executive Order, effective today, here.

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