Gov. Phil Scott extends state of emergency in Vermont

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Five months after first declaring a state of emergency, Governor Phil Scott extended it for another month until September 15th. Scott says this order will be used as a tool and it gives local municipalities the ability to manage certain things.

Scott said he worries most about college crowds and how long bars are staying open. He hopes the state of emergency order will help manage those things.

“It gives cities and towns the ability to lower the limit on gathering size and it lets them limit hours for the sale of alcohol meaning they could set a curfew for bars and clubs,” said Gov. Scott

Health Commissioner Dr. Mark Levine said testing has already started at college campuses and a few students have tested positive. In part of at-home testing sent ahead of students leaving their home state, one person is dealing with COVID-19.

“These positive tests mean the system is working. we want to find these, so we know who needs to stay inside and away from other people,” said Dr. Levine.

Levine expects to see more positive tests as students continue to return. “We’ll use our proven method of contact tracing to make sure we quickly identify those who need to isolate or quarantine in order to avoid any potential spread within the school and the community,” said Levine. Health officials say they will strategically target testing when there someone at a university is positive.

At the conference, Commissioner Pieciak said they have seen a decrease in cases this past week allowing more people to travel to Vermont. However, officials want to remind everyone that is not the case throughout the country.

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