Slowly and cautiously, Braintree is reopening for business with guidance from the state and town.
In the Braintree Chamber of Commerce’s third COVID-19 update, business owners learned about the governor’s reopening plan and when businesses can reopen. The meeting was held by video conference on May 21 and led by Chamber Chair Kim Kroha of Baker, Braverman & Barbadoro, P.C.
Here’s what you need to know:
Four phases for reopening
State Senator John Keenan and Margaret LaForest of the Mass. Office of Business Development previewed the reopening plan’s four phases. Advancing to the next phase will require a positive trend in public health metrics.
All businesses and service providers must comply with mandatory safety standards for adequate social distancing, hygiene protocols and cleaning. In addition, specific sectors should follow recommended best practices.
Sectors eligible to reopen in phase 1 are construction, manufacturing, office spaces, laboratories, hair salons and barbershops, car washes and pet grooming.
Businesses can use this Covid-19 control plan template to self-certify their compliance with the safety guidelines and display this compliance attestation poster to the public.
There will be no drop-in inspections, but employers and employees can report unsafe work conditions, which will trigger an inspection.
Under the “Safer at Home” advisory, people at high risk should continue to stay home except for essential errands.
Public health officials anticipate another surge of COVID-19 cases that will coincide with the annual flu season. “The fall will be very challenging,” said Sen. Keenan.
Facial coverings are required
The Braintree Chamber of Commerce hosted its second COVID-19 update with Mayor Kokoros, State Senator John Keenan and members of the real estate community on May 11.
Meeting by video conference, participants discussed the pandemic’s impact on residential and commercial renters and landlords as well as the broader business community. Incoming Braintree Chamber chair Kim Kroha led the meeting.
Coronavirus update from Town Hall
The mayor reported that 78 Braintree residents have died of Covid-19 to date, and 65% of cases are in nursing homes and long-term-care facilities. The number of new cases is declining, although the numbers are “far higher” than could have been anticipated at the start of the crisis.
The mayor expressed his commitment to working closely with business owners to reopen safely after the governor lifts restrictions and issues guidelines.
“We want everyone to get back to work, but we also don’t want everyone to get exposed,” the mayor said. Given that Braintree’s numbers are higher than the state average, the town likely will require stricter measures than those ordered by the state, he added.