Lancaster County will be moving to the YELLOW phase of reopening Friday, June 5, 2020. Some notable history and information:
- On May 5, 2020, the West Hempfield Township Board of Supervisors unanimously approved a resolution seeking the reopening of Lancaster County and West Hempfield Township. This resolution does not reference going to yellow, nor does it reference staying red. It also does not encourage the public to ignore the laws and orders in place. The resolution was sent to the Governor and the Secretary of Health and lays out our position on why and how we should be moved towards reopening. CLICK HERE to read the resolution.
- Numerous state and county elected officials, including a majority of the Lancaster County Commissioners, have issued a letter to the Governor indicating that Lancaster County will move to Yellow Friday, May 15, 2020. CLICK HERE to read this letter.
- The Lancaster County District Attorney has issued a statement indicating that the County will not prosecute violations of the Governor's orders related to COVID-19. As such, our police cannot and will not enforce these orders. CLICK HERE to read the DA's statement.
- The Lancaster Sheriff has issued a statement indicating that his office will not enforce the Governor's orders related to COVID-19. CLICK HERE to read the Sheriff's statement.
What exactly do all the colors mean anyway?
Red, Yellow, and Green refer to the Governor's phased reopening plan. CLICK HERE to read the Governor's Red, Yellow, and Green Phase details.
What happens if our business reopens contrary to the phased reopening?
As stated above, the Township will not be enforcing the business closure order. However, your business COULD be subject to enforcement by state agencies, including, but not limited to, the PA State Police, Department of Agriculture, Liquor Control Board, Office of General Counsel. If your business requires state issued licenses, you may also be subject to the suspension or revocation of your license. Any and all action would be a state decision which the Township would have no involvement with.
Can all businesses open June 5 under the Yellow Phase?
Lancaster County will move to Yellow June 5. However, the Yellow phase still has restrictions on some businesses, including:
- Indoor Recreation, Health and Wellness Facilities and Personal Care Services (such as gyms, spas, hair salons, nail salons and other entities that provide massage therapy), and all Entertainment (such as casinos, theaters) Remain Closed
- Restaurants and Bars Limited to Carry-Out and Delivery Only
When will Lancaster County move to the Green Phase?
We do not yet know!
Is it 100% safe for us to reopen our business or patronize businesses that are open?
This is another question that we cannot answer. There are many different sources of information out that there that offer many different perspectives on this. Our Township resolution noted above references the Secretary of Health's April Order related to safeguards for employees and customers at businesses which open. We encourage all businesses which choose to open to follow these guidelines. We also encourage all customers at these businesses to follow these guidelines, especially related to the wearing of face masks and socially distancing. CLICK HERE to read the Secretary of Health Order.
Can we complain about a business that opens against the Governor's order?
The Township is NOT accepting complaints about businesses which open contrary to the Governor's orders as the Township has no enforcement authority. You would need to contact the PA Department of Health if you have specific concerns about a business.
Are customers at risk of fines if we patronize a business open contrary to the Governor's orders?
To our knowledge, only the business itself is subject to possible repercussions for being open. Customers who choose to patronize these businesses are encouraged to follow all safety precautions noted above as per the Secretary of Health and the CDC.
Can we call the Township for additional guidance?
Yes, you are welcome to call the Township if you have additional questions. Unfortunately, we might not be able to provide you the answers you are seeking given how confusing all this is! We will do our best to guide you to the appropriate agency to better assist you!