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Holcomb announces 5-step plan to reopen Indiana, stage 2 to start Monday



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Gov. Eric Holcomb addresses the media April 19, 2017, in East Chicago, Indiana. On Friday, Holcomb announced a five-step plan to open Indiana’s economy. Tribune News Service

Today, Governor Eric Holcomb announced a five-step plan to open Indiana’s economy while remaining “vigilant” about Hoosiers’ health, according to a press release from the governor’s office. 

Starting Monday, all Indiana counties except Cass, Lake and Marion will move into stage two of the plan. In this phase, essential travel restrictions will be lifted, social gatherings of up to 25 people will be permitted, and non-essential businesses and religious services can reopen with social distancing guidelines, according to the press release. 

Businesses such as retailers and restaurants must operate at 50% capacity, and all activities must continue to follow social distancing guidelines from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, according to the release. In phase two, individuals considered high risk for the coronavirus, including those age 65 or older, should continue to isolate at home. 

Stage two will begin on May 11 for Lake and Marion counties, and May 18 for Cass county. Local governments may enforce more restrictive guidelines, according to the release.

Holcomb’s administration will continue to track data on COVID-19 cases to decide whether to change the timeline of the plan, according to the release. This data includes hospitals’ capacity for critical care beds and ventilators, COVID-19 testing of front-line workers and contact tracing, the process of tracing COVID-19 infections back to their source to monitor how the virus is spreading.

If COVID-19 cases begin to surge, some counties will move back to previous stages in Holcomb’s five-stage plan, according to the release.

“Across Indiana, we have witnessed a spirit of cooperation and caring for others that has touched my heart,” Holcomb said in the release. “May this spirit of appreciation for one another carry on long after the scourge of COVID-19 is behind us.”

Correction: A previous version of this graphic mislabeled the opening date for restaurants and religious services in stage two. Restaurants can open May 11 at 50% capacity, a week after stage two begins, and religious services may resume May 8. The IDS regrets these errors.

Graphic by Carson TerBush

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