Governor Carney Announces Lifting of Short-Term Rental Ban, Out-of-State Quarantine on June 1

Outdoor gatherings up to 250 people also permitted on June 1, with precautions to protect the most vulnerable

WILMINGTON, Del. – Governor John Carney on Tuesday announced that the State of Delaware will lift the ban on short-term rental units and the mandatory 14-day quarantine for out-of-state travelers on June 1 as part of the rolling reopening of Delaware’s economy.

Governor Carney previously lifted State of Delaware restrictions on Delaware beaches ahead of the Memorial Day weekend.

Phase 1 of Delaware’s economic reopening is scheduled to begin on June 1, allowing retail establishments, restaurants and other businesses to open at 30 percent of stated fire capacity with social distancing requirements and other public health guidance in place. 

Read the State of Delaware’s Phase 1 economic reopening guidance.

“We want visitors to enjoy Delaware, our world-class beaches and restaurants, but it’s important that everyone remember that COVID-19 is still very much active in Delaware,” said Governor Carney. “Delawareans who visited our beaches this past weekend acted responsibly, taking basic precautions to protect their families and their neighbors. Thank you. We all need to continue taking steps to protect our most vulnerable. Those steps aren’t complicated. Wash your hands frequently. Maintain distance between yourself and others. Wear a face covering when you’re in a public setting. Don’t let up.”

Governor Carney also announced on Tuesday that outdoor gatherings of up to 250 people – including weddings and outdoor graduation ceremonies – will be permitted in Delaware beginning on June 1, with basic public health precautions in place to protect against spread of COVID-19. Cloth face coverings must be worn in accordance with Governor Carney’s State of Emergency declaration, and individuals must maintain social distance of at least six feet from anyone outside of their household. 

Gatherings over 250 individuals are not permitted during Phase 1. However, organizers of planned outdoor large gatherings and events may apply to host a large gathering or event by submitting a plan to the Delaware Division of Small Business at least seven days prior to the event. The Delaware Department of Education will release guidance for outdoor graduations later today. 

Read the State of Delaware’s guidance for outdoor gatherings for full details. 

Outdoor gatherings should only be carried out if there is strict adherence to social distancing and other public health guidance from the Delaware Division of Public Health (DPH) and the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), which are intended to protect the most vulnerable from COVID-19 infection and serious illness. 

In conjunction with the easing of certain business, travel and gathering restrictions, Governor Carney will lift Delaware’s stay-at-home order effective June 1, but he cautioned that Delawareans should continue to avoid unnecessary outings and gatherings to limit community spread of COVID-19.

“We are where we are because Delawareans listened and stayed home,” said Governor Carney. “While we are slowly reopening our economy, it’s critical that Delawareans not rush out and undo all the hard work they’ve done to get us to this point. Let’s continue to be cautious and responsible as we ease our way into this new normal.”

The State of Delaware will release guidance later this week on summer school programs and summer camps. 

For additional details about Delaware’s economic reopening, visit de.gov/economy

Anyone with a question about COVID-19, should call Delaware 2-1-1, or email delaware211@uwde.org. Individuals who are deaf or hard of hearing can text their ZIP code to 898-211. Hours of operation are 8 a.m. to 9 p.m. Monday through Friday; 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday and Sunday. Medical-related questions related to testing, symptoms, and health-related guidance can also be submitted by email at DPHCall@delaware.gov

Click here to find the latest COVID-19 testing locations.

DPH will continue to update the public as more information becomes available. For the latest on Delaware’s response, go to de.gov/coronavirus.

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Governor Carney Announces Reopening of Beaches to Delawareans

Beaches, pools, ice cream shops to open with restrictions; Out-of-state quarantine will remain in place

WILMINGTON, Del. – Governor John Carney on Thursday announced that the State of Delaware will lift restrictions on Delaware beaches and community pools at 5:00 p.m. on Friday, May 22, subject to strict social distancing requirements and other restrictions. Ice cream shops and trucks will reopen with restrictions effective 5:00 p.m. this Friday, May 15.

Governor Carney made the announcement after consultation with public health experts at the Delaware Division of Public Health (DPH) and mayors of Delaware’s beach towns. Delaware’s mandatory 14-day quarantine for out-of-state travelers and ban on short term rentals will remain in effect. Non-Delawareans who have been in Delaware for at least 14 days will be permitted to use the beaches.

Strict social distancing and hygiene requirements will accompany the reopening of Delaware’s beaches. Beachgoers must maintain at least 6 feet of distance between themselves and anyone outside their household. Face coverings must be worn on the boardwalk and are encouraged on the beach. Restaurants and bars are still limited to delivery and take-out services only.

The full list of requirements and recommendations for beach towns and beachgoers is available below.

Click here for DPH guidance on reopening public and community swimming pools.

“Summer at the beach and the pool is a huge part of life for so many Delawareans. As we ease our way into a new normal, we’re trying to find ways for Delawareans to enjoy the outdoors and the company of their families,” said Governor Carney. “I want to be very clear to our friends who want to travel here from outside the state. While we hope one day soon to be able to welcome you to our beaches, that time has not yet come. We need to reopen Delaware in a controlled way that doesn’t put anyone at risk.”

“I cannot emphasize strongly enough that during this everyone must continue to keep a six foot distance from others, and to wear face coverings when out, even when going to enjoy activities permitted under these limited re-opening conditions,” said DPH Director Dr. Karyl Rattay. “It’s incredibly important that everyone exercise common sense and follow the restrictions so we don’t have a re-resurgence in cases of COVID-19 and are forced to tighten them again.”

Under Thursday’s announcement, community pools in Delaware may reopen at 5:00 p.m. on Friday, May 22, but are limited to 20 percent of regular capacity. Swim lessons or practices of swim teams are not permitted. Ice cream stores and trucks may reopen for take-out or curbside pick-up with strict social distancing measures at 5:00 p.m. this Friday, May 15. Children under 12-years-old must be accompanied by an adult.

“With the restrictions being lifted for our beaches, pools and ice cream shops, it is critical that we all continue to act as if we already have coronavirus,” said Department of Health and Social Services (DHSS) Secretary Dr. Kara Odom Walker, a practicing family physician. “We need to remain at least 6 feet away from non-family members, wear a face covering in public, wash our hands often, wipe down commonly used surfaces, and cough and sneeze into our face coverings or elbows. Preventing flare-ups of COVID-19 is our shared responsibility. It is the only way we will protect ourselves and our neighbors.”

Beaches at Cape Henlopen, Delaware Seashore and Fenwick Island state parks may limit capacity to vehicles to enforce social distancing. Governor Carney announced Thursday that current surf fishing restrictions on the number of individuals allowed per vehicle will be lifted on May 22 at 5:00 p.m. However, all individuals in the vehicle must be from the same household.

Surf fishing access may also be limited to enforce social distancing and avoid overcrowding.

“Our state park beaches are always popular places for people to get fresh air, exercise and create memorable experiences, but the restrictions have been critical to keep us all safe. As we allow increased beach activities, we urge Delawareans to avoid crowds and maintain at least six feet from others on and off the sand,” said DNREC Secretary Shawn Garvin. “We will be using entrance and parking restrictions to manage capacity. We’re trying to provide opportunities for Delawareans to continue to enjoy our state parks, but it is not back to normal by any stretch.”

To enforce the out-of-state quarantine as Delaware beaches reopen, Delaware State Police will station troopers at routes typically used by out-of-state travelers. Travelers will be stopped, asked a series of questions, and given information about the 14-day quarantine requirement under Governor Carney’s State of Emergency declaration. Violations of the emergency declaration, or any of its modifications, constitute a criminal offense.

Local officials also are encouraged to limit capacity on their beaches to prevent overcrowding and potential spread of COVID-19.

“The Delaware State Police will continue to enforce the laws of the State of Delaware, to include those associated with the 14-day quarantine requirement for out-of-state travelers,” said Colonel Nathaniel McQueen Jr., Superintendent-Delaware State Police. “Our emphasis and goal in enforcing the orders, specifically in regards to the travel restrictions, is to achieve voluntary compliance through education and awareness. The health and well-being of our Troopers, as well as the community, will remain our top priority as we continue to serve and protect, during this unprecedented event.”

Beach towns and beachgoers will be subject to certain restrictions as Delaware beaches reopen effective 5:00 p.m. on Friday, May 22.

 

Towns must:

  • Clean bathrooms, boardwalk railings, benches multiple times per day
  • Close arcade games on boardwalk
  • Demarcate (using tape, cones, etc.) 6 feet intervals in front of certain retail on boardwalks where lines are likely to form, entrances to the beach, or any other area where congregating or waiting in lines is likely to occur
  • Identify enforcement teams

Towns are recommended to:

  • Implement systems to limit capacity (like timed or day passes) on the beach
  • Limit parking spaces
  • Limit access points
  • Designate Beach Ambassadors to educate beachgoers about social distancing and serve as liaisons to law enforcement
  • Station Beach Ambassadors at access points

Regulations for beachgoers:

  • Face coverings are required on boardwalk and encouraged on the beach
  • Members of different households must remain 6 feet apart at all times
  • Individuals with underlying health conditions or who are over 65-years-old should continue to shelter in place.
  • Avoid water fountains.

Regulations for on-premise beach vendors:

  • Food and beverage concession vendors must follow restaurant regulations and may only provide take-out or delivery service. Vendors must wear face coverings. Customers must be 6 feet apart while waiting in line.
  • The rental of items like umbrellas, chairs, mats, kayaks, etc. are allowed so long as the vendor properly disinfects between each use/rental.

 

Anyone with a question about COVID-19, whether related to medical or social service needs, should call Delaware 2-1-1. Individuals who are deaf or hard of hearing can text their ZIP code to 898-211. Hours of operation are 8 a.m. to 9 p.m. Monday through Friday; 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday and Sunday.

Health or medically-related COVID-19 questions can also be submitted by email at DPHCall@delaware.gov.

DPH will continue to update the public as more information becomes available. For the latest on Delaware’s response, go to de.gov/coronavirus.

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DuPont Nature Center to reopen April 1

Volunteers sought for spring cleanup day March 14

DOVER, Del. – The DuPont Nature Center at Mispillion Harbor Reserve, a DNREC Division of Fish & Wildlife facility located in the heart of Delaware’s Bayshore Region and a popular family and school tour destination, will reopen for the 2020 season Wednesday, April 1. The center will be open in April from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Wednesdays and Saturdays only. The center’s 2020 schedule through September can be found on the Division of Fish & Wildlife website.

Prior to reopening, the DuPont Nature Center will hold a volunteer spring cleanup day from 9 a.m. to noon, Saturday, March 14. Projects include exhibit and tank set-up, planting beach grass, cleaning the center, and trash removal from surrounding grounds. Volunteers under age 18 must have a completed parental consent form, and volunteers under age 16 must be accompanied by an adult. For more information or to sign up to volunteer, contact Lynne Pusey at lynne.pusey@delaware.gov or 302-422-1329.

Located on the edge of Mispillion Harbor at the intersection of the mouths of the Mispillion River and Cedar Creek, the DuPont Nature Center at Mispillion Harbor Reserve offers a variety of interactive exhibits and educational programs. In the spring, the center’s large deck overlooking the harbor offers wildlife watchers an unparalleled view of the spectacle of spawning horseshoe crabs and migrating shorebirds, including federally-listed threatened red knots that depend on horseshoe crab eggs to help fuel their 9,000-mile journey. Indoor saltwater tanks allow a close-up look at a variety of aquatic species, from horseshoe crabs to diamondback terrapins.

The DuPont Nature Center is located at 2992 Lighthouse Road, near Slaughter Beach, east of Milford. Admission to the center is free and open to the public. For general information about the center, please call 302-422-1329 or visit the DuPont Nature Center webpage. For inquiries about the center’s programs and operations, please contact Lynne Pusey at lynne.pusey@delaware.gov or 302-422-1329.

About DNREC

The Delaware Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Control protects and manages the state’s natural resources, protects public health, provides outdoor recreational opportunities, and educates Delawareans about the environment. The Division of Fish and Wildlife conserves and manages Delaware’s fish and wildlife and their habitats, and provides fishing, hunting, wildlife viewing and boating access on nearly 65,000 acres of public land. For more information, visit the website and connect with @DNREC on Facebook, Twitter or LinkedIn.

Media contact: Joanna Wilson, Joanna.wilson@delaware.gov

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DNREC Division of Fish & Wildlife announces reopening of Phillips Landing boat ramp and parking lot

DOVER – DNREC’s Division of Fish & Wildlife announced today that construction at the Phillips Landing boat ramp, parking lot, and fishing area is complete, and the area has reopened for public use.

For more information, please call the DNREC Division of Fish & Wildlife Fisheries Section at 302-739-9914.

Follow the Division of Fish & Wildlife on Facebook, https://www.facebook.com/DelawareFishWildlife.

Contact: Joanna Wilson, DNREC Public Affairs, 302-739-9902

Vol. 49, No. 78


DNREC Division of Fish & Wildlife’s DuPont Nature Center to reopen April 3

(The DuPont Nature Center at Mispillion Harbor Reserve will reopen for the 2019 season April 3. DNREC photo by Chris Bennett.)

Volunteers sought for spring cleanup day March 16

DOVER – The DuPont Nature Center at Mispillion Harbor Reserve, a DNREC Division of Fish & Wildlife facility located in the heart of Delaware’s Bayshore Region, will reopen Wednesday, April 3 after having been closed for the fall and winter. The center will be open in April from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Wednesdays and Saturdays only. The center’s 2019 schedule for April through September can be found on the DuPont Nature Center website.

Prior to reopening, the DuPont Nature Center will hold a volunteer spring cleanup day from 9 a.m. to noon, Saturday, March 16. Projects include exhibit and tank set-up, planting beach grass, and cleaning the center and surrounding grounds. Volunteers under age 18 must provide a parental consent form, and volunteers under age 16 must be accompanied by an adult. For more information or to sign up to volunteer, contact Lynne Pusey at lynne.pusey@delaware.gov or 302-422-1329.

In the spring, the center’s large deck overlooking the harbor offers wildlife watchers an unparalleled view of the spectacle of spawning horseshoe crabs and migrating shorebirds, including federally-listed threatened red knots that depend on horseshoe crab eggs to help fuel their 9,000-mile journey. Indoor freshwater and saltwater tanks allow a close-up look at a variety of aquatic species, from horseshoe crabs to diamondback terrapins.

Located on the edge of Mispillion Harbor at the intersection of the mouths of the Mispillion River and Cedar Creek, the DuPont Nature Center at Mispillion Harbor Reserve offers a variety of interactive exhibits and educational programs. Spring and summer programs can be viewed on the DuPont Nature Center website.

The DuPont Nature Center is located at 2992 Lighthouse Road, near Slaughter Beach, east of Milford. Admission to the center is free and open to the public. For general information about the center, please call 302-422-1329 or visit DuPont Nature Center. For inquiries about the center’s programs and operations, please contact Lynne Pusey, lynne.pusey@delaware.gov or 302-422-1329.

Follow the Division of Fish & Wildlife on Facebook, https://www.facebook.com/DelawareFishWildlife.

Contact: Joanna Wilson, DNREC Public Affairs, 302-739-9902

Vol. 49, No. 49