2. News Releases

March 31, 2020 GOVERNOR'S ORDER REGARDING SHORT-TERM RENTALS
Executive Office of Health and Human Services Department of Public Health
This guidance implements the terms of COVID-19 Order No. 13, updated as of March 31, 2020, COVID-19 Order No. 21, as the Order applies to hotels, motels, inns, bed and breakfasts, and short-term residential rentals including those arranged through on-line hosting platforms such as Airbnb or VRBO (collectively, as defined below, “lodgings”).

Please see order here: https://www.mass.gov/doc/march-31-2020-hotel-motel-guidance/download


March 31, 2020 STAY AT HOME AND CLOSURE OF NONESSENTIAL BUSINESSES EXTENDED THROUGH MAY 4

BOSTON - Massachusetts Gov. Charlie Baker on Tuesday announced the extension of the state’s stay-at-home advisory and mandatory closure of nonessential businesses through May 4.

The original advisory took effect on March 24 and was scheduled to expire on April 7. It instructs all residents except for employees of essential businesses to stay home, with an exception for excursions to get needed items such as groceries or medicine.

Baker’s announcement comes a few days after President Donald Trump extended federal social distancing guidelines until the end of April. 

Source: https://www.wcvb.com/article/gov-baker-massachusetts-coronavirus-respons...


March 30, 2020 To Prevent the Spread of Covid-19 the Following Town of Wellfleet Locations are CLOSED:

  • Playground
  • Skateboard Park 
  • Basketball Courts
  • Tennis Courts
  • Pickleball Courts

PLEASE STAY HOME, IF YOU MUST COME OUT MAINTAIN SIX FEET TO SOCIAL DISTANCE FROM ONE ANOTHER


March 30, 2020: WELLFLEET ANNOUNCES FIRST POSITIVE CASE OF COVID-19 
Press Release found by clicking here.


March 25, 2020 TRAVELERS FROM TRI-STATE AREA URGED TO SELF-ISOLATE
As recommended by the White House Coronavirus Task Force, the Wellfleet Board of Health is urging residents, who returned to their Wellfleet homes from New York City or the greater NY metropolitan area (New Jersey, New York, Connecticut), to self-isolate themselves for a period of 14 days in their homes.

This voluntary self-isolation, out of an abundance of caution, recognizes that New York City is the current epicenter of the COVID-19 pandemic in the United States, with more than 15,000 confirmed cases in New York City alone. Self-isolation for 14 days will help curb the spread of the disease in Wellfleet and Barnstable County and lessen the stress on our critical infrastructure, including, First Responders, Hospitals and Health Care.

We strongly urge new arrivals to take special steps to distance themselves when buying groceries or undertaking other essential activities in our community; practice social distancing, avoid group gatherings, monitor your health, and contact your Health Care Provider should you feel ill.

There is a substantial amount of information available on COVID-19 at the local, regional, State, and Federal level available online. We urge residents and visitors to visit the following sites for accurate, updated information:

  1. 1https://www.wellfleet-ma.gov/home/covid-19-information
  2. 2https://www.mass.gov/resource/information-on-the-outbreak-of-coronavirus...
  3. https://www.cdc.gov/

A further source of information is the Massachusetts’s 2-1-1 system (dial 211, #Call2Talk, or www.mass211.org) a free, confidential, multi-lingual source for information and referral to local resources.

Any person who is experiencing symptoms such as a fever, and cough or difficulty breathing is encouraged to self-isolate and call your healthcare provider for medical advice. All persons are urged to maintain social distancing (6 feet from other persons) whenever possible and to wash hands, utilize alcohol-based hand sanitizer, and practice proper respiratory etiquette. High risk individuals, including older adults, those with underlying medical conditions (heart or lung disease, high blood pressure, diabetes, weakened immune system, anyone who is pregnant), are urged to avoid large gatherings. 


March 23, 2020: DPH Public Health Advisory: Stay-at-Home Advisory for Individuals over 70 and for those with underlying health conditions; and Safe Practices for the General Public

https://www.mass.gov/news/dph-public-health-advisory-stay-at-home-adviso...


March 23, 2020 Essential Services And Revised Gatherings Order 
Massachusetts Gov. Charlie Baker and state health officials will issue a stay-at-home advisory effective until Tuesday, April 7.

Baker also ordered the closure of non-essential businesses, starting at noon Tuesday. This order will also expire on April 7. Examples of essential organizations and employees include healthcare, law enforcement, food manufacturers, grocers, utilities, transportation and public works. The governor said his new orders were issued after discussion with health experts, local and federal officials and the governors of other states.

"These steps are, of course, difficult to take. These aggressive social distancing measures put in place today are designed to give public health experts the time they need to ramp up additional steps that must be taken to effectively push back the virus. Other parts of the world have shown that this is possible," Baker said.

Read the emergency order
Full list of services and businesses deemed essential

Baker drew a distinction between his orders and a mandated shelter-in-place, saying he did not believe that he "can or should order U.S. citizens to be confined to their homes for days on end." He emphasized that he is urging people to stay home and avoid any unnecessary activities.

"What this means is that everyone can still buy food at the grocery store, get what they need at the pharmacy and, of course, take a walk around the block or at the park," Baker said.

Monday is also the first day of Baker's ordered closure of all child care facilities, with exemptions for about 300 facilities serving the families of emergency personnel, medical staff and "others critical to fighting the COVID-19 outbreak."

Source: https://www.wcvb.com/article/governor-baker-coronavirus-emergency-update...


Emergency Child Care Centers Update
On Wednesday March 18
, Governor Baker issued an Executive Order requiring all early education centers and family child care providers to close from Monday March 23 through at least April 6 to help slow the spread of COVID-19. Following this order, the MA Department of Early Education and Care (EEC) issued emergency procedures allowing certain providers to offer child care services for families of emergency personnel, medical staff, and others critical to confronting COVID-19. These emergency child care programs are only available for these critical personnel when all other non-group-care settings have been exhausted. For more information, please visit eeclead.force.com/apex/EEC_ChildCareEmergencyProcedure. 


Barnstable County Coronavirus Update (March 17, 2020)
Barnstable County and Cape Cod Healthcare opened a drive-thru coronavirus testing site in the Cape Cod Community College parking lot. Patients must have a physician’s order from Cape Cod Healthcare to be tested. The site will be open 8am to 6pm seven days a week. Patients who do not have a primary care provider can call a Cape Cod Healthcare Urgent Care center

Barnstable County has opened its Multi-Agency Coordination Center (MACC), the County’s emergency operations center, to coordinate County coronavirus activities.

Barnstable County offices are closed; County employees are working under a telecommuting plan.

Barnstable County Water Quality Laboratory is open; customers may have samples sent by courier or may enter and drop samples on the office counter. 3/27 Update: The Barnstable County Water Quality Laboratory is currently closed. We will only be accepting samples from Public Water Suppliers on an appointment basis.

The Barnstable County Commissioners will meet March 18 via remote participation only.

The Assembly of Delegates meeting scheduled for March 18 has been cancelled.

The Registry of Deeds is open for electronic recordings only. No research or on-site closings are permitted.

The Cape Cod Medical Reserve Corps gained 24 new volunteers this week. A plan for using the Corps is in development and may include support to the Cape’s senior centers.

The County urges the public to practice public health guidance that will save lives and protect our health, including social distancing, staying home, and hand-washing.


SBA Approves Massachusetts Disaster Declaration
Assistance Will be Provided to Massachusetts Businessesand Non-Profits Impacted by COVID-19
FRAMINGHAM – The Baker-Polito Administration announced today that the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) will offer low-interest federal disaster loans for working capital to Massachusetts small businesses suffering substantial economic injury as a result of the Coronavirus (COVID-19). The disaster declaration makes SBA assistance available following a request received from Governor Charlie Baker on March 17, 2020.

The disaster declaration makes SBA assistance available in the entire state of Massachusetts; and the contiguous counties in neighboring states.

Small businesses, private non-profit organizations of any size, small agricultural cooperatives and small aquaculture enterprises that have been financially impacted as a direct result of the Coronavirus (COVID-19) since Jan. 31, 2020, may qualify for Economic Injury Disaster Loans of up to $2 million to help meet financial obligations and operating expenses which could have been met had the disaster not occurred.Eligibility for Economic Injury Disaster Loans is based on the financial impact of the Coronavirus (COVID-19). The interest rate is 3.75 percent for small businesses. The interest rate for private non-profit organizations is 2.75 percent. SBA offers loans with long-term repayments in order to keep payments affordable, up to a maximum of 30 years, and are available to entities without the financial ability to offset the adverse impact without hardship.

Applicants may apply online, receive additional disaster assistance information and download applications at https://disasterloan.sba.gov/ela. Applicants may also call SBA’s Customer Service Center at (800) 659-2955 or emaildisastercustomerservice@sba.gov for more information on SBA disaster assistance. Individuals who are deaf or hard‑of‑hearing may call (800) 877-8339. Completed applications should be mailed to U.S. Small Business Administration, Processing and Disbursement Center, 14925 Kingsport Road, Fort Worth, TX  76155.

The deadline to apply for an Economic Injury Disaster Loan is Dec. 18, 2020.

On March 16, 2020, the Baker-Polito Administration announced a $10 Million Small Business Recovery Loan Fund, and the administration remains in ongoing discussions across state government and with federal partners to determine what resources can be made available to small businesses and non-profits as they contend with the negative effects of this public health emergency. 

The administration will continue to update the public on further developments and individuals are encouraged to consult both the Department of Public Health and the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention websites for the most up to date information.

The latest information and guidance regarding COVID-19 is always available at mass.gov/COVID19.


March 15, 2020: Wellfleet Town Buildings Closed to Public
Effective at 4pm on Monday, March 16th all Wellfleet town buildings with the exception of the Police Station and the Fire Station will be closed to the general public.  We respectfully request unless it is an emergency that you not visit town buildings on Monday.  This closure will remain in effect through Friday, April 3rd.  We will continue to evaluate the situation.

This is unchartered territory for all of us and there probably won't be right or wrong answers at this time.  One way we know to prevent the spread of the COVID 19 virus is to limit interactions between individuals.  To protect our Wellfleet residents, visitors and Town staff we must limit those interactions.

Life as we know it will change for some time.  We all may feel a sense of isolation as we go through this.  Please call your neighbors and check in on them and let them hear a friendly voice.

Most, if not all, committee and board meetings will happen via conference call following Governor Baker's executive order suspending some of the open meeting law regulations.  We are working on the logistics of this so meetings may be held and interested residents may listen in on the conference call.  Should you have comments or opinions on a topic scheduled for a meeting you are encouraged to submit your comment in writing via e-mail.

  • A decision has not yet been made on town meeting.  The Town and the state are considering options on local town meetings.
  • Those making a payment of any kind may deposit their payment in the drop box by the rear entrance of town hall.
  • Should you have question or an issue you at any time please send an email to TownAdministrator@wellfleet-ma.gov.  We will use this as a dedicated e-mail to address questions.  We will also create a list of responses to Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) that will be listed on the front page of the Towns web site.
  • You may always call town hall at (508) 349-0300

The health and safety of our residents, non-residents, visitors, volunteers and Town staff will drive every decision we make.  Please keep yourself informed and be safe.


Large Gatherings of 25 and Restaurants Order
On March 15, Governor Charlie Baker issued an emergency order prohibiting most gatherings of over 25 people in an effort to limit the spread of the Coronavirus. The order includes, but is not limited, to the following events: community, civic, public, leisure, faith-based events, sporting events with spectators, concerts, conventions, fundraisers, parades, fairs, festivals, and any similar event or activity that brings together 25 or more persons in a single room or single space at the same time in a venue such as an auditorium, stadium, arena, large conference room, meeting hall, theatre, or any other confined indoor or outdoor space.

The Governor directed the Department of Public Health (DPH) to issue guidance implementing the terms of the Emergency Order. The full DPH guidance is available here: DPH Assemblage Guidance

Read the March 15 press release: Baker-Polito Administration Announces Emergency Actions to Address COVID-19


Barnstable County Board of Regional Commissioners Declares Local Health Emergency Due to COVID-19
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE - BARNSTABLE COUNTY, MA | March 13, 2020
– In response to Governor Charlie Baker's Declaration of Emergency for the Commonwealth of Massachusetts, the Barnstable County Board of Regional Commissioners declare that effective immediately, March 13, 2020, a state of emergency is declared to exist in Barnstable County due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

According to County Administrator John Yunits, Jr., "This declaration has been issued, at the request of the Board of Regional Commissioners, to help us prepare, give the County the administrative capability to adapt County operations, and ensure the allocation of more resources as it relates to COVID-19.”


State of Emergency Declared
On March 10
, Governor Charlie Baker declared a state of emergency, giving the Administration more flexibility to respond to the outbreak. The Administration continues to take steps to limit the spread of COVID-19. Read more about the declaration and associated orders.