State set to lift most COVID-19 requirements

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By Andrew Larson, Republican-American

Gov. Ned Lamont greets students from Jonathan Law High School as they arrive at Quassy Amusement Park in Middlebury for their prom on May 12. Lamont was on hand for a news conference to talk lifting COVID-19 restrictions. -JIM SHANNON/REPUBLICAN-AMERICAN

MIDDLEBURY — Most COVID-19 restrictions will be lifted on May 19, except for the requirement of indoor masks, Gov. Ned Lamont announced May 12 as Jonathan Law High School’s prom festivities began at Quassy Amusement Park.

The high school in Milford rented an outdoor pavilion at Quassy, which has been closed for the last year, for its senior prom.

It was a fitting backdrop for Lamont’s announcement that life will soon return to a semblance of normalcy.

“This is symbolic,” Lamont said. “This state is opening up. We’re opening up in a big way and making sure that each and every one of our kids has a chance to pick up right where they left off, and what better place to do it than right here?”

Last year, prom was canceled. Lamont greeted students as they arrived and told them, “We’re making up for lost time.”

On May 19, most COVID-19 requirements will be eliminated. People no longer need to wear masks outside if they’ve been vaccinated, and the 6-foot social distancing rule will be scrapped, he said.

Indoors, people need to continue wearing masks in public places for the foreseeable future. It will be up to restaurants to decide whether they want to continue spacing tables further apart.

On May 12, the state’s COVID-19 positivity rate was 1% — the lowest it’s been in months. The “overwhelming majority” of people over 40 have been vaccinated, Lamont said.

But herd immunity won’t be achieved unless younger people also get the vaccine, Lamont added.