On March 30, 2020, Governor Phil Scott restricted travel into Vermont and clarified restrictions on Vermont’s lodging industry. These directives supplement Governor Scott’s prior Stay Home/Stay Safe Order, which suspended commercial lodging unless required to support the COVID-19 response, and Executive Order 01-20, which declared a state of emergency in response to COVID-19.
To curtail the spread of COVID-19 in Vermont and maintain Vermont’s response capabilities, Governor Scott issued the following orders as to travel and lodging. These orders will remain in effect until April 15, 2020, unless later extended.
Governor Scott Restricts Travel into Vermont
Governor Scott restricted travel into Vermont (including business travel into Vermont), directing Vermont residents and non-residents traveling into Vermont from outside the state to self-monitor and home quarantine for 14 days. The exception to this order is if someone travels into Vermont for an “essential purpose.” The Governor specified that “essential purpose” means “travel required for personal safety; food, beverage or medicine; medical care; care of others; and to perform work, services or functions deemed critical to public health and safety, as well as economic and national security, as set forth in [the Governor’s previous] Stay Home/Stay Safe” Order. As such, multi state businesses and businesses operating across state lines need to be aware that unless employees are traveling into Vermont to perform work for a business that has been determined to be essential under the Governor’s Order, the employees should refrain from traveling into the state, or they will be subject to the quarantine.
In addition, visitors are instructed not to travel to Vermont if they are displaying symptoms of COVID-19, or if they are traveling from CDC “hot-spots,” including Florida, Louisiana, Detroit, Chicago, New York City, New Jersey or Connecticut.
Governor Scott Prohibits Most Commercial Lodging
In last week’s Stay Home/Stay Safe Order, Governor Scott suspended lodging operations. Today’s guidance clarifies that “lodging” includes, but is not be limited to, “hotels, motels, bed and breakfasts, inns, short term rentals, such as those made available through VRBO, Homeaway, AirBnb and other services, parks for recreational vehicles and campgrounds, [and] all public and private camping facilities including those managed by the Vermont Department of Parks and Recreation.”
Existing guests may remain in their lodging through the end of their scheduled stays but cannot extend their stays or make new reservations. Governor Scott will allow lodging in only the following circumstances:
- Housing vulnerable populations, such as homeless individuals, as arranged by the state
- Housing healthcare workers, or other workers deemed necessary to support public health, public safety or critical infrastructure
- Lodging used as quarantine facilities, as arranged by the state
- Other limited circumstances for the care and safety of Vermonters
Permitted lodging must be reserved over the phone. Online reservations are suspended. Lodging providers are ordered to post notice on their internet platforms of these reservation restrictions.
Vermont law enforcement officials will monitor lodging providers’ compliance with this order and will report non-compliance to the Office of the Attorney General.
Please contact Heather Hammond (email@example.com) at Gravel & Shea PC if you have questions or would like assistance.