Virginia Governor Starts to Ease Phase 3 Guidelines
Effective at midnight on Monday, March 1, 2021, Virginia will start easing a few of its Phase 3 COVID Guidelines. According to the Governor’s press release, his amended Executive Order is in response to an encouraging decline in hospitalizations and infection rates and a continuing increase in vaccinations. However, the Governor notes that the seven-day average of new COVID-19 cases is still more than 2,000 per day, which is higher than at any point in the first nine months of the pandemic.
The amended Executive Order (which is expected to remain in effect for at least 30 days) can be found by clicking here. Some of the changes of particular relevance to community associations include:
- Social gatherings: the maximum number of individuals (not in the same family) permitted in an outdoor gathering will increase from 10 to 25 people, while remaining at 10 persons for indoor settings.
- Group Fitness Classes: for outdoor group exercise and fitness classes, the total number of participants (including instructors) increases from 10 to 25.
- Swimming pools: although there is still a maximum of 75% occupancy (based on the “lowest occupancy load on the certificate of occupancy”), the 10-foot physical distancing requirement now only applies to “swimmers” rather than to all “patrons.” As before, this distancing requirement does not apply to family members, defined to include “blood relations, adopted, step, and foster relations, as well as all individuals residing in the same household or visiting such household pursuant to a child custody arrangement or order.”
Finally, be aware that Virginia’s current face covering (mask) requirements applicable indoors and, in some cases, outdoors, remains in effect. In addition, some localities may still have their own mask requirements, such as the City of Alexandria.
Federal, state and local responses to COVID-19 are changing quickly. We encourage associations to monitor relevant government websites and this page for further updates.
Legal Disclaimer: This information is not intended to be legal advice. Legal advice must be tailored to the specific facts and circumstances of each case and each association’s governing documents. Also, it is not intended to be a full and exhaustive explanation of all legal considerations, nor should it be used to replace the individualized advice of your legal counsel.