Coronavirus News

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February 26, 2021

Maine Adopts Age-Based Approach to Expanding Vaccine Eligibility

Governor Janet Mills announced today that Maine will adopt an age-based approach to expanding vaccine eligibility. As a result, beginning next Wednesday, March 3, 2021, Maine will expand eligibility for the vaccine to those 60 years and older. More...

February 18, 2021

U.S. Chamber launches COVID Vaccines Digital Resources Center

Recently the U.S. Chamber of Commerce launched a comprehensive new digital resource center to ensure the business community has the information, tools, and templates it needs to navigate this critical phase of the pandemic response and get back to business.
The COVID Vaccines Digital Resources Center includes FAQs, state-specific guidance and information, employer vaccine communication and strategy guidance, reliable safety and efficacy information, and more. More...

February 9, 2021

Governor Proposes Compromise PPP Tax Solution

​The Mills Administration today offered a solution to the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) tax conformity issue that would extend full state tax relief to more than 99 percent of Maine businesses that received PPP. The proposal would match the Federal government’s double benefit on the first $1 million of PPP received, an approach that would result in full tax relief for Maine’s small businesses who need it most and partial relief to those Maine businesses that received more than $1 million in PPP. More...

January 29, 2021

Governor Mills: “Let’s solve the PPP issue”

​Governor Janet Mills announced Wednesday that she has asked her departments to explore whether Federal funding may exist to help Maine provide the same beneficial tax treatment to PPP funds that the Federal government has. More...

January 28, 2021

Governor Mills Ends Early Business Closing Time

​Governor Janet Mills announced today that she will end the 9:00 p.m. early closing time for businesses, effective Monday, February 1, 2021. The decision is the result of Maine’s improving public health metrics, including a decrease in Maine’s positivity rate and new COVID-19 cases per million. More...

December 30, 2020

Mills Administration Continues Early Business Closing Time Amid Increase in COVID-19 Positivity Rate and Hospitalizations

Amid an increase in Maine’s COVID-19 positivity rate and a continued high rate of hospitalizations, the Mills Administration today announced that it will extend the requirement for certain businesses statewide to close by 9:00 p.m. in order to limit activities that could contribute to the transmission of COVID-19.

The early closure limits extended indoor gatherings among members of the public, which are activities that present a higher risk of COVID-19 transmission, and does so during later hours when people are more likely to lower their guard, jeopardizing adherence to critical public health and safety measures. However, the early closure requirement also limits business disruption by allowing these businesses to maintain daytime operations and to continue curbside pick-up and delivery service after 9:00 p.m. The requirement, which was scheduled to expire on Sunday, January 3, 2021, will continue until further notice. More...

December 23, 2020

Maine DEP delays enforcement of polystyrene foam and plastic bag bans

​A statewide ban on single-use plastic carry-out bags had been scheduled to go into effect January 15, 2021 and the polystyrene foam disposable food service container ban had been scheduled to go into effect January 1, 2021 however, the Maine Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) is delaying its enforcement of the laws that ban the use of these products until July 1, 2021. More...

December 11, 2020

Governor Mills Further Strengthens Enforcement of Face Covering Requirement

With widespread community transmission and increased COVID-19 cases and hospitalizations in Maine, Governor Janet Mills today signed an Executive Order (PDF) that simplifies and strengthens the enforcement of the State’s face covering requirement. Moving forward, owners and operators of all indoor public spaces – regardless of the type of entity or size – must not allow those who refuse to wear a face covering to enter or remain in their venue. Previous Executive Orders had required enforcement in some but not all public settings. More...

December 11, 2020

Mills Administration Announces One-Time Relief Payment for Mainers Unemployed Due to COVID-19

December 9, 2020 - Governor Janet Mills and Commissioner of Labor Laura Fortman announced today that the Administration will provide certain individuals who are unemployed due to COVID-19 with a one-time direct relief payment of $600 through the State’s newly-created Pandemic Relief Program (PRP). The relief payment is meant to assist unemployed Maine people at a time when they continue to face substantial economic hardship as a result of COVID-19 and are losing their Federal unemployment benefits at the end of the month unless Congress acts. This payment includes self-employed, sole proprietors, and other business owners who are unemployed and losing their Federal unemployment benefits this month. More...

November 30, 2020

Governor Mills Launches $40 Million Economic Recovery Grant Program to Support Maine Tourism, Hospitality & Retail Small Businesses

​Updated on December 1, 2020 - Governor Janet Mills announced Monday an economic recovery grant program to support Maine’s tourism, hospitality, and retail small businesses. Backed by $40 million in Federal CARES Act Coronavirus Relief Funds (CRF), the Tourism, Hospitality & Retail Recovery Grant Program is focused specifically on supporting Maine’s service sector small businesses, such as restaurants, bars, tasting rooms, lodging and retail shops, which have been hard hit by the COVID-19 pandemic and now face additional challenges with the coming winter months. More...