skip to Main Content
MSJ NEWS see latest news

Connecticut Updates Business Rules in Advance of Relaxation of COVID-19 Capacity Limits

  • Connecticut issues business operating guidelines to take effect this Friday
  • Governor Ned Lamont previously announced that business capacity restrictions would largely be lifted on this date
  • Businesses encouraged to continue taking precautions, including mask wearing and social distancing rules

Summary by Dirk Langeveld

The Department of Economic and Community Development has issued business operating guidelines for Connecticut companies ahead of a rollback of capacity limitations set to take place on Friday, March 19.

Governor Ned Lamont previously announced that capacity limits would be raised to 100 percent for most businesses on that date. Capacity limits have generally capped at 50 percent since November, although personal services businesses have a limit of 75 percent.

Capacities will continue to be limited to 50 percent for movie theaters and performing arts venues. In addition, the state is capping indoor gatherings at commercial venues at 50 percent up to 100 people, or 200 people for outdoor gatherings. Bars that only serve beverages are still prohibited from reopening, and no standing bar service is permitted outside of private events.

Restaurants, movie theaters, performing arts venues, and indoor recreation businesses will be subject to an 11 p.m. curfew. The DECD is also issuing new guidance for gyms and fitness centers, recommending that they limit the amount of people at swimming pools to a number that can follow six feet of social distancing on the pool deck and three feet on walking paths. Free swim activities are discouraged.

Gatherings at private residences are capped at 25 people indoors and 100 people outdoors. The DECD is also establishing a 50 percent cap up to 100 people for indoor graduation ceremonies; a 50 percent capacity compared to last year on fairs, festivals, and carnivals; and a cap of 500 people for outdoor organized events open to the public, such as concerts and fireworks displays.

Limitations are looser for outdoor graduations and religious services, which are only limited to “the number that can be accommodated safely by location with masks and social distancing required. ”

The DECD says businesses should regard the rules as the “minimum baseline of precautions needed to protect public health in Connecticut.” Businesses are asked to continue enforcing rules requiring customers to wear mask and practice social distancing, and to follow the Centers for Disease Control guidelines for cleaning and sanitation.

In addition, businesses are asked to maintain a log of employees on the premises to support contact tracing efforts, make efforts to improve their ventilation, post signage sharing the state’s 211 hotline for employees and customers to report potential rules violations, and take additional steps as recommended by industry experts or “common sense” to meet their own situation.

Chris DiPentima, president and CEO of the Connecticut Business & Industry Association, said the organization welcomed the new guidance but also asked businesses to continue taking a cautious approach.

“Our economic recovery is fragile and I urge businesses to remain cautious and continue safeguarding their employees and families and their clients, customers, and vendors,” said DiPentima.

Connecticut is set to put other rules into effect on April 2, including permitting amusement parks to open with no capacity limits, outdoor event venues to open with a 50 percent capacity up to 10,000 people, and indoor stadiums to open with a 10 percent capacity limit.

Spread the Word

More To Explore

Expert Summaries

Know Your Competitors

By Denis Jakuc 

There are tons of benefits to knowing who your competitors are—what they’re offering, their strengths and weaknesses. That knowledge can help you make your products and services stand out,

Latest News

Join with Free InnovatorsLINK Account

Start accessing all the free member benefits and valuable content on the InnovatorsLINK platform. Create a BizLINK listing to boost brand exposure, receive the weekly Main Street Journal newsletter, engage in forums, get full access to free content, and more.