As Congress still tries to cross the legislative finish line on a second major coronavirus relief package, Gov. Larry Hogan (R) announced Thursday an additional $180 million in economic relief related to the coronavirus pandemic. 

The governor announced that aid as he enacted an executive order that limits out-of-state travel for Marylanders and the state health department issued a public health advisory limiting gatherings from a maximum of 25 to 10 people.

Of the $180 million in aid, $50 million will go to hotels and the hospitality industry statewide, Hogan said. Another $40 million will be allocated to temporary cash assistance benefits programs for the next six months, with $40 million more for developmental disability care providers, he added.

Hogan also announced an additional $30 million for restaurants, along with other aid. He was glad Congress appeared close to a bill, but stopped short of a full compliment. 

"We are disappointed that this compromise appears to be leaving out support for state and local governments, which will continue to be desperately needed as we continue to battle on the front lines," Hogan said. "But as I have repeatedly said, with so many people hurting, something, even if it is only a short-term solution, is certainly better than doing nothing."

Those traveling out of state will be required to quarantine for 10 days or obtain a negative COVID-19 test result—but after some questions from reporters, Hogan said his executive order is meant to target those traveling by plane outside of the region or those driving further throughout the country.

Hogan understood many people travel in between Washington D.C., Maryland and Virginia, for example.

"We're not going to be out there checking people or having law enforcement come after people for traveling," the governor said. "We're just going to rely on the good faith of the people who will listen to these orders because they're critically important to keeping people alive."

Greg Slater, the state's secretary of transportation, also called on Marylanders to limit out-of-state travel. 

"This holiday season, please give the gift of good health by avoiding nonessential travel to help stop the spread of COVID-19 and to protect you and your families," Slater said. "Simply put: Don't travel unless necessary."

Follow Steve Bohnel on Twitter: @Steve_Bohnel

Steve Bohnel is the county government reporter for the Frederick News-Post. He can be reached at sbohnel@newspost.com. He graduated from Temple University, with a journalism degree in May 2017, and is a die-hard Everton F.C. fan.

(14) comments

public-redux

An outfit in North Carolina had a crowd with a bunch of singing less than 2 weeks ago. 75 Covid cases from it so far — and those are only the known cases. The organization says they are sending prayers.

https://www.citizen-times.com/story/news/local/2020/12/17/covid-19-holiday-event-hendersonville-church-spawns-75-covid-cases/3940204001/

Greg F

I travel to VA for a physician appointment and for golf. That's about it. Outside, separate carts, masks, no touching the pin on the green, no fist bumps, no stopping inbetween otherwise, the whole shebang, and everyone I've golfed with since last year is in the same pod of people since the beginning that all do the right things and has not met anyone family since March otherwise and works from home, and as mentioned, is in the bubble/pod/whatever of like-minded sane and safe-acting people. What is near comical to me is Alex Azar's wife now has Covid and yet he is still going to work, but just distancing with a mask. Hmmm....

bosco

I wonder if once we get the vaccine if we can get some sort of badge to wear around our necks on chain like TV cops do so that we don't have to wear the mask "to protect others"?

We've stayed distant and masked and not bothered with the "pod" concept because all it takes is one idiot in the pod to ruin it.

I'll bet a lot of the Thanksgiving gatherings thought they were in a "pod" also since it was family.

Wear a mask and distance.

[ninja]

vodalone

How do you know those in your golf pod of people are doing the same thing? You have no way of confirming that since they are not part of your household. For all the shaming you do on here for people living their lives, you very well could be a super spreader yourself.

gabrielshorn2013

When it comes to people, there is no such thing as a "closed herd". We are all one big Venn diagram; A intersection B, intersection C, intersection D, and on and on... hence the ease of virus spread.

vodalone

Exactly, tell that to Greg.

bosco

You hit the nail on the head, vodalone. Doctor Fed Up GregF and his pod.

[ninja]

TomWheatley

We already have cardboard cutouts with the kids photos and even made a cardboard dog for Thanksgiving. The plan was to use them again next week.

DickD

Luckily I already planned to stay home.

bosco

These travel advisories are giving many folks the perfect excuse not to make the obligatory trip to be with relatives they can't stand or to extend the obligatory invitations to relatives to come over for the holidays.

Like you, DickD, we are staying home and avoiding travel until we get the vaccine.

Stay well.

[ninja]

vjhughes

Oh, but think of the guilt trips Moms will lay on the kids! :-D

gabrielshorn2013

Maybe, but the response could be: "Love you Mom, but if we visit you for Christmas, we may be planning a funeral for Valentines Day. There is no guarantee that any of us are negative". Better to sacrifice this visit, with the hopes of having many more, than gambling where the prize may be tragic. Zoom won't allow viral transmission.

DickD

You stay well too, Bosco.

bosco

Thanks, DickD. We are going to come out the other side stronger than ever before.

[ninja]

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