The City of Springfield COVID-19 (Coronavirus) Situational Timeline

The City of Springfield is currently monitoring the COVID-19 Coronavirus pandemic situation and will provide further updates as new developments and relevant information becomes available.

UPDATE - November 30, 2020: Massachusetts Lower-Risk State Travel List: Currently Hawaii is Only Safe State 

November 23, 2020:  State Updates Lower-Risk State List; Springfield Weekly COVID-19 Cases Update

November 18, 2020:  CDC Updates Guidelines for In-Person Learning for Schools

November 16, 2020:  State Updates Lower-Risk States List; Springfield Public Schools Stay with Remote Learning; Governor Baker and other Regional Governors to Hold an Emegency Summit

November 12, 2020:  Massachusetts, Connecticut, New Jersey, New Hampshire, Maine, Rhode Island, and Vermont Suspend Interstate Competitions of Youth Hockey; Governor Baker Announces Plans to Reopen Field Hospitals For COVID-19 Surge

November 2, 2020:  Connecticut and New Jersey Removed from States Low-Risk List; Governor Baker Issues New Stay At-Home Advisory and Curfew for Businesses

October 29, 2020:  Secretary of State Election Division Issues Election Directive for Ballot Boxes on Halloween

October 27, 2020:  State Issues MAGovt Emergency Alert in High-Risk Communities  

October 26, 2020:  Mayor Sarno Sends Letter to Springfield Small Businesses Encouraging Them to Take Advantage of the Commonwealth’s Small Business Grant Program;  State Updates Eviction Diversion Initiative

October 23, 2020:  State Shuts Down Ice Skating and Hockey Rinks Amid Increase in COVID-19 Cases; Mayor Sarno and HHS Commissioner Caulton-Harris Provide COVID-19 Update to Neighborhood Councils;  Massachusetts Eviction Diversion Initiative 

October 22, 2020:  Governor Baker Announces a comprehensive $774 million Plan to Help Small Businesses, Housing Stability and Boost and Innovate the Economy

October 19, 2020:  Stop the Spread Initiative Extended Until December 31, 2020 in the City of Springfield; DPW Annouces Bondi's Island Landfill Will Remain Closed for Residential Drop Off

October, 16 2020: Springfield Police Department to Offer Free Prescription Drug Disposal;  DPW Cancels Yard Waste Collection Friday Due to Fire at Bondi's Island - Landfill Closed Friday and Saturday; Commonwealth Updates Safe States Travel Order List 

October 15, 2020:  City of Springfield Temporarily Closes Cyr Arena Due to Potential COVID-19 Exposure; Mayor Sarno and HHS Commissioner Caulton-Harris hold After Action Workshop Virtual Meeting; Springfield Public Schools Pause All Athletic Events for Fall Sports for Two Weeks

October 14, 2020: Baker-Polito Administration Announces COVID-19 Measures to Ensure Readiness for Fall and Winter; Mayor Sarno and HHS Commissioner Caulton-Harris Hold Virtual Neighborhood Council COVID-19 Update Meeting

October 13, 2020:  Baker-Polito Administration Announce Eviction Diversion Initiative

October 8, 2020: City of Springfield Partners with the Economic Development Council of Western Mass and the Economic Development Partners for a Developers Conference; Springfield Public Schools Temporarily Suspends Remote Learning Due to Potential IT Threat

October 6, 2020:  Additional States Removd from the Commonwealth's Low-Risk List;  City of Springfield Holding Free Seasonal Flu Clinics

October 1, 2020:  Springfield Designated as a Red/High-Risk Community

September 29, 2020: State Department of Public Health Issues Tips for a Safe and Healthy Halloween; Oregon Removed from States Low-Risk List; Governor Baker Announced Step 2 of Phase III Reopening Plan

September 24, 2020:  City of Springfield and the Spirit of Springfield Announce Plans for the Opening of the World Renowned Bright Nights at Forest Park;  City of Springfield Listed as Moderate-Risk (Yellow Community) for COVID-19 Cases   

September 23, 2020:  State Updates Seating Guidelines for Restaurants - will allow Bar Seating

September 22, 2020: City of Springfield goes over 3 Million Meals Served as part of the COVID-19 Springfield Public Schools Meals Program; RMV Dedicates Wednesdays in the Month of September to Anyone 74 Years of Age or Older

September 21, 2020: Wyoming Removed from States Low-Risk List; City of Springfield Extends Stop the Spread Initiative Until October 31, 2020

September 18, 2020: Mayor Sarno Announces $3.5 million for Homeless Services as part of the CARES Act 

September 16, 2020:  State Announces Extention of Tax Relief for Certain Small Businesses 

September 15, 2020: Mayor Sarno asked the City's License Commission to Waive Liquor License Renewal Fees for 2021 for Restaurants and Pouring Establishments

September 14, 2020:  State Adds Pennsylvania, Delaware and West Virginia to High-Risk List and Adds New Mexico to Low-Risk List; City of Springfield Reviewing Outdoor Dining Extention; City of Springfield Announce Halloween Guidance Admist COVID-19 Coronavirus Pandemic; Black Lives Matter Mural Painted on Court Street 

September 11, 2020:  City of Springfield and Spirit of Springfield hold 9/11 Remembrance Ceremony; SPS to Continue Meal Distribution into the School Year

September 10, 2020: City of Springfield to Allow Tag Sales with Restrictions as part of the City’s Phase III Reopening Plan; Governor Baker to sign Executive Orders allowing Indoor and Outdoor Arcades to Resume and to Extend the Time Local Municipalities can Permit Outdoor Dining

September 9, 2020: DESE Issues New Guidance for School Nurses

September 8, 2020: Oregon, Washington state and Wyoming Designatec Lower-risk – Now Exempt from Travel Order; Additional Stop the Spread Testing Site Added in Springfield

August 28, 2020:City of Springfield and America Medical Response Join Commonwealth to Offer Additional Free COVID-19 Testing in Springfield; Colorado, Delaware, West Virginia and Pennsylvania Designated Lower-Risk, Now Exempt from Massachusetts Travel Order

August 27, 2020: MDPH Reports Springfield at Lower Risk Level;  Mayor Sarno, Governor Baker, Congressman Neal and other Officials Announce $51.3 million Elm Street Redevelopment Project 

August 26, 2020: City of Springfield Reports Zero '0' New COVID-19 Cases Tuesday, August 25th

August 24, 2020: DESE Issues Expectations for Teachers to Report to Classroom for Remote Learning - SPS to Begin School Year with Remote Learning

August 20, 2020: MDPH Reports Springfield at Moderate Risk Level; Massachusetts Schools Immunization Requirements for 2020-2021

August 18, 2020: City of Springfield and Tapestry Health Announce Additional COVID-19 Testing Sites; Springfield Public Schools Remote Opening FAQ's

August 17, 2020:  State Removes Hawaii from Safe Travel Order - No Longer Low-Risk State

August 10, 2020: City of Springfield to Open Cooling Centers

August 7, 2020: Governor Baker Announces New Initiatives to Stop the Spread of COVID-19

August 5, 2020:  City of Springfield Responds and Recovers from Tropical Storm Isaias;  Springfield School Committee Held a Virtual Town Hall Meeting    

August 4, 2020: State Removes Rhode Island from Safe Travel Order - No Longer Low-Risk State

August 3, 2020: City of Springfield and State Department of Public Health Announce Partnerships in Support of Stop the Spread Initiative

August 1, 2020: Massachusetts New Travel Order Takes Effect

July 31, 2020: Springfield School Committee votes to start 2020-2021 School Year Two Weeks Later;  State Legislature Approves Measure to Suspend Joint Rule 12A and Continue Formal Sessions past July 31 deadline 

July 29, 2020: State Legislature Purposes to Extend Formal Sessions past July 31 due to COVID-19

July 28, 2020: State Department of Elementary and Secondary Education (DESE) Announced Major Changes for the 2020-2021 School Year

July 27, 2020: Governor Baker Announces Additional Locations for Free COVID-19 testing; City of Springfield Awards 14 New Grants to Local Non-Profits as part of the Fourth Round of Prime the Pump Grant Program

July 24, 2020: Massachusetts Announces New Travel Order Effective August 1st 

July 21, 2020:  Governor Baker extends Moratorium for most Evictions and Foreclosures; State Allows Restaurants to Sell Sealed Containers of Mixed Drinks with their Takeout Food Orders

July 20, 2020: City of Springfield to Keep Cooling Centers Open

July 16, 2020: Springfield Awards 84 New Grants to Local Small Businesses as part of the Third Round of Prime the Pump; City of Springfield to Open Cooling Centers

July 13, 2020:  MGM Springfield, the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame and Springfield Musuems have all Reopened as part of the states Phase III Reopening Plan

July 7, 2020: Mayor Sarno Toured MGM Springfield to See Comprehensive Reopening Plans

July 2, 2020: Reopening Massachusetts: Governor Baker Announces Transition to Third Phase of Four-Phase Reopening Approach; 4th Round of Prime the Pump for Non-Profits Announced

July 1, 2020: Massachusetts Department of Elementary and Secondary Education Releases Update for Fall School Reopning Guidance

June 30, 2020: Governor Baker Announces Updated Travel Guidelines to Support Massachusetts' COVID-19 Response 

June 22, 2020: Massachusetts Transitions to Step 2 of Phase 2 of Reopening; Massachusetts RMV Offers License Renewal Incentive 

June 17, 2020: City of Springfield Announces $500,000 in Third Round of Prime the Pump Grant Program

June 15, 2020: Governor Baker Announces Pop Up COVID-19 Testing for June 17 and 18

June 8, 2020:  Sector-Specific Protocols and Best Practices

June 5, 2020: Mayor Sarno Moves to Facilitate and Energize Restaurants' / Businesses' Bottom Lines and Our Economy

May 29, 2020: Mayor Sarno joined Congressman Neal and PVTA Administrator Sheehan for Announcement of $36 million in CARES Act Funding to PVTA

May 22, 2020:  RMV Implements Further Credential Extensions

May 21, 2020: Mayor Sarno Announced Phased Reopening Plans for City of Springfield

May 18, 2020: Governor Baker Announced Four-Phased Plan for Reopening Massachusetts 

May 11, 2020: The Food Bank of Western Mass - Transportation to Get Food Through May 16th; Governor Baker Announces Four-Phase Approach to Reopening Massachusetts & Publishes Woekplace Safety Standards

May 7, 2020: Governor Baker Updates Essential Services Guidance; City of Springfield Reopens Golf Courses

May 5, 2020: Governor Baker Updates Essential Services Guidance

May 1, 2020:  Governor Baker Issues Order Requiring Face Coverings to be worn in Public

April 29, 2020: Mayor Sarno and HHS Commissioner Caulton-Harris Announce Partnership with Mercy Medical to begin testing at the Springfield Rescue Mission 

April 28, 2020: City of Springfield Awards 76 New Grants to City Small Businesses as Part of the Second Round of “Prime the Pump”; Governor Charlie Baker Announced 'Stay at Home Advisory' and 'Closure of Non-essential Businesses' Extended Until May 18th; Springfield City Hall and All Municipal Buildings to Remain Closed to Public Until May 18, 2020; Mayor Sarno and HHS Commissioner Caulton-Harris Announce Homeless Testing to Start in Partnership with Baystate Health Systems

April 23, 2020: City of Springfield’s Administration and Finance Division Recognized with Distinguished Budget Presentation Award

April 22, 2020: Mayor Sarno and HHS Commissioner Caulton-Harris Report Major Spike of 104 New Cases Today; Mayor Sarno and HHS Commissioner Caulton-Harris Issue New Public Health Advisory to Essential Retail Establishments

April 21, 2020: Massachusetts Schools will Remain Closed this Academic Year

April 20, 2020: Governor Baker Signs Housing Bill Granting Moratorium on Evictions and Foreclosures; Governor Baker Announced Implementation of CARES Act Unemployment Benefits for Self-Employed and Other Workers

April 17, 2020: Springfield Public Schools Announce Meals Available for All Kids, Not Just SPS Students

April 16, 2020: Masschusetts RMV Further Extends Certain Deadlines

April 15, 2020:  Mayor Sarno Orders Hiring and Spending Freeze; MassMutual Offering $3 Billion in Free Life Insurance to Healthcare Workers on COVID-19 Frontline

April 13, 2020: Mayor Sarno Continues to Closely Monitor COVID-19 Situation; City of Springfield Activates COVID-19 Hotline; Governor Baker Signs An Act to Further Address Challenges Faced by Municipalities, School Districts and State Authorities Resulting from COVID-19

April 10, 2020: City of Springfield Releases Round Two of Prime the Pump Business Grant Program; Governor Baker Advises Massachusetts Residents to Wear Face Coverings 

April 9, 2020: MassHire to Hold Springfield Strong Online Job Expo; City of Springfield Responds to Massachusetts Gaming Commission Vote on MGM Budget

April 8, 2020: City of Springfield to Adjust Deadline for Tax Relief Applications; Mass. DPH Issued an Emergency Order Regarding Grocery Store Operations and Occupancy Limits; Governor Baker and DPH Updated COVID-19 Essential Services FAQs

April 3, 2020: Mayor Sarno and Health Commissioner Caulton-Harris Issue New Public Health Advisory and Recommendation; Springfield Awards 30 Grants to City Restaurants as Part of the “Prime the Pump” Grant Program; City of Springfield to Adjust Collection Date for 4th Quarter Real Estate Property Taxes

April 2, 2020:  Springfield City Council and School Committee Schedule Virtual Meetings; Congressman Richard E. Neal Announces the signing of the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act and CDBG Funding for Springfield; Massachusetts Registry of Motor Vehicles Extends the Renewal Deadline for Motor Vehicle Registration

April 1, 2020:  Springfield Public Schools Add Additional Meal Site and Make Other Announcements

March 31, 2020:  Governor Baker Extends Order for Non-Essential Businesses to Remain Closed Until May 4, 2020

March 30, 2020:  Mayor Sarno and Police Commissioner Clapprood Announce Partnership with MA State Police; Mayor Sarno gave his Weekly COVID-19 Situational Update; City of Springfield closes and prohibits all active recreational activities; Springfield Public Schools Begin Initiative to Distribute Laptops to Students.

March 27, 2020: Governor Baker Announced New Travel Guidelines; Springfield City Library Announced Services Available; MassDOT-Registry of Motor Vehicles No-Walk-in Policy; City of Springfield Announces Contingency Plan for City’s Homeless Population; Mayor Sarno Signs on to Letter Asking the President and Federal Government to Coordinate Efforts for the Purchasing and Distribution of Medical Equipment; Massachusetts Announces State Income Tax Filing Deadline Being Extended to July 15; Mayor Sarno Petitions HUD for Additional CDBG Funds for Small Business Assistance; Mayor Sarno Announces Request for Massachusetts National Guard

March 26, 2020: City Hall and All Municipal Buildings to Remain Closed to the Public Until May 4, 2020

March 25, 2020: City of Springfield COVID-19 (Coronavirus) Situational Update

March 24, 2020: City of Springfield Office of Planning & Economic Development Resources

March 23, 2020: Governor Baker Issues New Order and Advisory

March 19, 2020: City of Springfield Issues New Public Health Emergency Recommendations

March 18, 2020: City of Springfield Restaurant Grant Program, U.S. Small Business Administration Disaster Assistance to Small Businesses, and Western Mass Economic Development Council State and Community Partners Resources

March 17, 2020: Governor Baker Announces Small Business Recovery Loan Fund

March 16, 2020: City Hall and All Municipal Buildings to Close to Pubic

March 13, 2020: City of Springfield Declares State of Emergency

March 11, 2020: Springfield Public Schools

March 10, 2020: Baystate Health COVID-19 Information

March 4, 2020: Massachusetts Department of Public Health


November 30, 2020

Massachusetts Lower-Risk State Travel List: Currently Hawaii is Only State on List

Vermont was removed as lower-risk, effective 12:01AM on November 28, 2020. Massachusetts residents are urged to limit any out-of-State travel only to States designated as COVID-19 lower-risk States.

In determining whether you are required to complete the Massachusetts Travel Form and whether you may be required to comply with the 14-day quarantine requirement, you will be treated as “arriving from” a place other than a COVID-19 lower-risk state if you were present in any State or jurisdiction not on the list of COVID-19 lower-risk states for more than a transitory period of time in the last 14 days.

Anyone arriving from an international destination must fill out the Massachusetts Travel Form and must quarantine for 14 days or meet the 72-hour testing rule.


November 23, 2020

State Updates Lower-Risk State List

Effective November 21, 2020 only the state of Hawaii and Vermont are listed on the Commonwealths Lower-Risk State list.  

Massachusetts residents are urged to limit any out-of-State travel only to States designated as COVID-19 lower-risk States.

 

Springfield Weekly COVID-19 Cases Update

The City of Springfield continues to see high number of COVID-19 cases across the City.  

For the week of November 15th, total number of cases were 632.  Saturday, November 21st was the highest total day with 119 confirmed COVID-19 cases, with Monday, November 16th as the second highest with 109.  

For the week of November 8th, total number of cases were 697.  Saturday, November 14th was the highest total day with 137 confirmed COVID-19 cases reported.  Friday, November 13th was the second highest with 128.  

 


November 18, 2020

CDC Updates Guidelines for In-Person Learning for Schools

The Center for Disease Controll and Prevention has updated their guidelines for in-person learning for schools by removing language that promoted in-person learning.

Claiming the previous information and content was outdated and that new scientific information has emerged, the CDC now states that children of all ages are susceptible to COVID-19 Coronavirus.   

 

 


November 16, 2020 

State Updates Lower-Risk States List

The Commonwealth of Massachusetts has updated their list of Lower-Risk states as of November 13, 2020.

District of Columbia, New York and Washington State have been removed as Lower-Risk.  

 

Springfield Public Schools Stay with Remote Learning

The Springfield Public Schools will continue with remote learning aspects. 

The Springfield School Committee voted to postpone a vote to in-person learning due to the need for additional time to hear from families.  The School Committee is planning to reschedule a virtual town hall meeting to allow families to comment and to hear about the continued plans for keeping the schools safe and clean.  

 

Governor Baker and other Regional Governors to Hold an Emegency Summit

Governor Charlie Baker and other regional governors from the NorthEastern states held an emergency summit to discuss measures on how to possibly coordinating new restrictions to help curb and mitigate the spread of the COVID-19 Coronavirus.  Governors from Connecticut, New Jersey, New York, Pennsylvania and Vermont were planning to participate.  

 


(UPDATE) November 12, 2020

Massachusetts, Connecticut, New Jersey, New Hampshire, Maine, Rhode Island, and Vermont Suspend Interstate Competitions of Youth Hockey

In response to recent coronavirus outbreaks associated with the conduct of interstate youth hockey activities, Massachusetts Governor Charlie Baker, New Jersey Governor Phil Murphy, Maine Governor Janet Mills, Rhode Island Governor Gina Raimondo, New Hampshire Governor Chris Sununu, Vermont Governor Phil Scott, and Connecticut Governor Ned Lamont will support a regional approach to interstate competitions. As case numbers increase in many states across the country, it is critical that neighboring states coordinate a regional approach to limit further community spread of the virus. 

The seven states will suspend interstate competitions for public and private schools and youth hockey effective this Saturday, November 14, 2020 through at minimum December 31, 2020. The prohibition will not impact interstate collegiate, professional, or U.S. national team hockey activities, which will remain subject to existing health and safety protocols and/or restrictions.

As public health data continues to evolve, the states will reassess the need for continued restrictions on interstate sports activities.

 

Governor Baker Announces Plans to Reopen Field Hospitals For COVID-19 Surge

Governor Baker is set to announce detail plans for reopening field hospitals to position the Commonwealth to handle any potential COVID-19 surge.  

The state opened field hospitals in April to help address the growing cases of COVID-19 patients needing care.  

Governor Baker is preparing to bring back the medical tents and convention center cots to prepare for the fall and winter surge of COVID-19.  This action is being taken out of an abudance of caution and to assist local hospitals which might potentially see an increase in patient occupancy. 

 


(UPDATE) November 2, 2020

Connecticut and New Jersey Removed from States Low-Risk List

Effective October 31, 2020 the Commonwealth of Massachusetts has removed Connecticut and New Jersey from the State's Lower-Risk travel list.  

Massachusetts residents are urged to limit any out-of-State travel only to States designated as COVID-19 lower-risk States.

 

Governor Baker Issues New Stay At-Home Advisory and Curfew for Businesses

Governor Charlie Baker today issued new stay at-home advisory that takes effect from 10pm to 5am.  In addition, the Governor also ordered restaurants to stop table service at 9:30pm.  

The state allows exceptions for going to work, seeking medical care, going to the grocery store and picking up take-out food.

The Baker administration also will limit private, indoor gatherings to 10 people and outdoor gatherings to 25 people. The state bolstered its mask requirements to order everyone to do so, even if they are 6 feet away from others.

 


(UPDATE) October 29, 2020 

Secretary of State Election Division Issues Election Directive for Ballot Boxes on Halloween

Mayor Domenic J. Sarno and Election Commissioner Gladys Oyola announced that the City of Springfield has received an Election Directive from the Secretary of State Elections Division for enhanced security of ballot drop boxes in the Commonwealth leading up to Halloween.

The City of Springfield Elections Office will be temporarily closing the Ballot Drop Box on Saturday, October 31, 2020 at 12:00 pm.  The Ballot Drop Box will be reopened the morning of Sunday, November 1, 2020. 

 


(UPDATE) October 27, 2020

State Issues MAGovt Emergency Alert in High-Risk Communities

The Commonwealth of Massachusetts COVID-19 Command Center issued the MAGovt Emergency Alert to the phones of residents and neighboring towns in high-risk communities as a way to warn and remind resients about the persistently high Coronavirus threat and the importance to adhere to all public health and safety guidelines and protocols.

The MAGovt COVID-19 High-Risk Emergency Alert went out to the following Communities:

  • Acushnet
  • Attleboro
  • Boston
  • Brockton
  • Chelmsford
  • Gloucester
  • Holyoke
  • Hudson
  • Kingston
  • Leicester
  • Lowell
  • Malden
  • Marlborough
  • Methuen
  • Middleton
  • North Andover
  • Plymouth
  • Randolph
  • Springfield
  • Waltham
  • Webster
  • Woburn

 


(UPDATE) October 26, 2020

Mayor Sarno Sends Letter to Springfield Small Businesses Encouraging Them to Take Advantage of the Commonwealth’s Small Business Grant Program

Mayor Domenic J. Sarno and Chief Development Officer Tim Sheehan sent a letter to small business owners, who had contacted the City seeking assistance due to the ongoing COVID-19 Coronavirus pandemic, to encourage them to take advantage of the Massachusetts Growth Capital Corporation (MGCC) grant program.

The Commonwealth has allocated over $50 million in grants for small businesses that have been adversely impacted by the COVID-19 Coronavirus pandemic.  The application period will be open for three (3) weeks starting October 22, 2020 and closing November 12, 2020 at 12:00 pm.  Each program encompasses its own eligibility criteria, set forth by the MGCC.  Applicants must review the information to determine which program to proceed with applying.  For more information please visit the website below:

https://www.empoweringsmallbusiness.org/covid-19-response/covid-19-grants-massachusetts-small-businesses

Preference will be given to small businesses whose owners are women, minorities, veterans, members of other underrepresented groups, who are focused on serving the Gateway Cities, which includes the City of Springfield, and those most negatively impacted by the pandemic. 

 

State Updates Eviction Diversion Initiative

The Commonwealth of Massachusetts has updated their Eviction Diversion Initiative.  The state has added a new section with important information for tenants on what a Notice to Quit represents, and who to contact if one is received.  

 


(UPDATE) October 23, 2020

State Shuts Down Ice Skating and Hockey Rinks Amid Increase in COVID-19 Cases

The Commonwealth has shut down ice skating and hockey rinks amid an increase in COVID-19 cases across the state.  The state Department of Public Health has ordered all indoor ice rink facilities to close for two weeks.  

The City of Springfield has already closed the Cyr Arean out of an abundance of caution due to the increasing numbers of COVID-19 cases and the potential of exposure tied to hockey games and practices.  

 

Mayor Sarno and HHS Commissioner Caulton-Harris Provide COVID-19 Update to Neighborhood Councils

Mayor Domenic J. Sarno and Health and Human Services (HHS) Commissioner Helen Caulton-Harris joined with board members from the city's Neighborhood Councils and Civic Associations at their monthly Neighborhood Collaboration Forum for a virtual COVID-19 Update Meeting.

 

Massachusetts Eviction Diversion Initiative

Massachusetts recently announced a new Eviction Diversion Initiative to help households as the eviction moratorium in Massachusetts expires. The initiative aims to keep tenants safely in their homes and to support the ongoing expenses of landlords once the Commonwealth’s pause of evictions and foreclosures expires on Saturday, October 17th

 


(UPDATE) October 22, 2020

Governor Baker Announces a comprehensive $774 million Plan to Help Small Businesses, Housing Stability and Boost and Innovate the Economy

The Baker-Polito Administration is set to announce a comprehensive $774 million plan to help small businesses, provide housing stability and boost and innovate local economies.  

$115 million in new funding would be made available for workforce training and to help small businesses that have been hit the hardest by the COVID-19 Coronavirus pandemic. 

 


(UPDATE) October 19, 2020

Stop the Spread Initiative Extended Until December 31, 2020 in the City of Springfield

Mayor Domenic J. Sarno and Health and Human Services (HHS) Commissioner Helen Caulton-Harris announced today that the Commonwealth’s Stop the Spread initiative has been extended until December 31, 2020 in the City of Springfield.

American Medical Response (AMR) and Fallon EMS will continue with the Stop the Spread testing initiative into the New Year.  

 

DPW Annouces Bondi's Island Landfill Will Remain Closed for Residential Drop Off 

The City of Springfield Department of Public Works (DPW) has announced that the Bondi’s Island landfill will remain closed for residential drop off of yard waste material at least through Wednesday, October 21, 2020, due to the ongoing fire event at the landfill.

Curb side residential pick up by the DPW will continue as scheduled.  Yard waste collection that was scheduled for Friday, October 16, 2020 will be picked up on Monday, October 19, 2020.

 


(UPDATE) October 16, 2020

Springfield Police Department to Offer Free Prescription Drug Disposal

Unused or expired prescription medications are a public safety issue, leading to potential accidental poisoning, misuse, and overdose. Proper disposal of unused drugs saves lives and protects the environment. This year’s National Takeback event is sponsored by the DEA and SPD.

 

DPW Cancels Yard Waste Collection Friday Due to Fire at Bondi's Island - Landfill Closed Friday and Saturday

The City of Springfield Department of Public Works (DPW) has announced that due to the fire at Bondi’s Island landfill, the DPW is unable to collect yard waste today, Friday, October 16, 2020. Yard waste collection that was scheduled for today will be picked up on Monday, October 19, 2020.

In addition, the landfill will be closed and will not be accepting yard waste drop off from residents on Friday, October 16 and Saturday, October 17.

 

Commonwealth Updates Safe States Travel Order List

Effective October 16, 2020, the Department of Public Health metric for determining lower-risk states for the purposes of Massachusetts’ inter- state travel policy will consider data over two weeks rather than one week before moving a state from lower risk to high risk. One week of data will remain the standard for moving states into the lower risk category. Additionally, the threshold of cases per 100,000 residents will now be 10 to bring Massachusetts’s standard more in line with other states.

The current list of COVID-19 lower-risk states includes: 

 
  • California
  • Connecticut
  • District of Columbia
  • Hawaii
 
 
  • Maine
  • New Hampshire
  • New Jersey
 
 
  • New York
  • Vermont
  • Washington
 

 


(UPDATE) October 15, 2020

City of Springfield Temporarily Closes Cyr Arena Due to Potential COVID-19 Exposure

The City of Springfield Department of Parks and Recreation, in consultation with Health and Human Services Commissioner Helen Caulton-Harris and adhering to the City of Springfield’s Health and Human Services COVID-19 public health and safety protocols, is temporarily closing the Cyr Arena, effective immediately, after learning of a potential COVID-19 Coronavirus exposure earlier this month.  

 

Mayor Sarno and HHS Commissioner Caulton-Harris hold After Action Workshop Virtual Meeting

The After Action Workshop is sponsored by the Springfield Department of Health and Human Services. This Workshop was produced with input, advice, and assistance from the After Action Planning Team, which followed guidance set forth in the U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) Homeland Security Exercise and Evaluation Program (HSEEP).

The dialogue between city departments and community partners included information to identify gaps, lesson learned solidifying the department planning efforts   that focuses on emergency response plans, policies, and procedures.  Some events that were discussed was the COVID-19 Coronavirus pandemic, Influenza (Flu) season and winter weather response.  The emphasis of the discussion focused on the planning, intelligence and information sharing, operational coordination, community resilience, threat and hazard identification and operational communications.

 

Springfield Public Schools Pause All Athletic Events for Fall Sports for Two Weeks

The Springfield Public Schools in consultation with the state Department of Public Health, City of Springfield Health and Human Services Commissioner Helen Caulton-Harris and adhering to the City of Springfield’s Health and Human Services COVID-19 public health and safety protocols, have temporarily paused all athletic events and practices for fall sports for two weeks, effective immediately, due to a confirmed COVID-19 Coronavirus case from a student athlete.  

 


(UPDATE) October 14, 2020

Baker-Polito Administration Announced COVID-19 Measures to Ensure Readiness for Fall and Winter

The Baker-Polito Administration provided an update on a series of initiatives that will keep supporting the residents of the Commonwealth to stop the spread of COVID-19, and ensure the state’s readiness status heading into the fall and winter.

Led by the COVID-19 Command Center, the Administration outlined inter-departmental programs that have been built or expanded since the start of the pandemic in March, all of which strengthen the Commonwealth’s ability and capacity to respond if COVID cases in Massachusetts increase. This includes:

  • One of the most robust testing networks in the nation
  • A first-in-class contact tracing network
  • Investments and strengthened initiatives to provide appropriate care for older adults and staff at long-term care facilities (LTCF)
  • Hospital preparedness plans
  • PPE stockpile investments
  • Health and Safety requirements to protect teachers and students as schools re-open
  • A cautious phased approach to resume business activity

 

Mayor Sarno and HHS Commissioner Caulton-Harris Hold Virtual Neighborhood Council COVID-19 Update Meeting

Mayor Domenic J. Sarno and Health and Human Services (HHS) Commissioner Helen Caulton-Harris joined with board members from the city's Neighborhood Councils and Civic Associations for a virtual COVID-19 Update Meeting.

City of Springfield Health and Human Services Neighborhood Council COVID-19 Update

 


(UPDATE) October 13, 2020

Baker-Polito Administration Announce Eviction Diversion Initiative

The Baker-Polito Administration announced a comprehensive set of resources, known as the Eviction Diversion Initiative, to support tenants and landlords during the financial challenges caused by the pandemic. The goal of this initiative is to keep tenants safely in their homes and to support the ongoing expenses of landlords once the Commonwealth’s pause of evictions and foreclosures expires on Saturday, October 17th. This strategy was developed by a cross-agency team assembled by the Administration in coordination with the Massachusetts Trial Court to manage the end of the moratorium on October 17th and reflects input from a broad range of stakeholders.

 


(UPDATE) October 8, 2020

City of Springfield Partners with the Economic Development Council of Western Mass and the Economic Development Partners for a Developers Conference

The City of Springfield will join with the Economic Development Council of Western Mass and the Economic Development Partners for a Developers Conference.  This first ever virtual event will bring developers, real estate professionals, businesses, and other associated industries together to keep conversations going in attracting new investment and development in Springfield and throughout the region. 

The Conference was orginally scheduled for this past Spring but was postponed due to the ongoing COVID-19 Coronavirus pandemic.

 

Springfield Public Schools Temporarily Suspends Remote Learning Due to Potential IT Threat

Mayor Domenic J. Sarno and Superintendent Daniel Warwick announced today that out of an abundance of caution the Springfield Public School’s (SPS) have issued an early dismissal from school today and have temporarily suspended remote learning due to potential threats to the network that have been identified.

Early this morning, the Springfield Public Schools identified a potential threat to their IT network.  To ensure that the District can effectively mitigate the potential incident and restore access to all software and services as quickly as possible, school and remote learning activities are canceled for the remainder of today, Thursday, October 8th, 2020.  It is anticipated that the risk will be cleared and resolved in the near future so that remote learning may continue.

 


(UPDATE) October 6, 2020 

Additional States Removd from the Commonwealth's Low-Risk List

The Commonwealth has removed the states of Colorado, New Jersey and New Mexico from the low-risk list effective October 3, 2020.  In addition, the District of Columbia has been added to the low-risk list.  

The current list of COVID-19 low-risk states include: Connecticut, District of Columbia, Maine, New Hampshire, New York and Vermont.

 

City of Springfield Holding Free Seasonal Flu Clinics

The Springfield Department of Health and Human Services is holding FREE seasonal Flu Clinics. Flu Season is on-going and the City of Springfield would like to get ahead of what is considered “peak” time in the flu cycle.

Influenza (otherwise known as the flu) is a highly contagious Infection of the respiratory system caused by the influenza virus.  Illness can occur less than 24 hours after infection, with signs and symptoms ranging from mild to severe, such as a sore throat, runny nose, high fever, body aches, and potentially death.

 


(UPDATE) October 1, 2020

Springfield Designated as a Red/High-Risk Community

The Commonwealth’s latest COVID-19 Risk Assessment Map has recently designated the City of Springfield as a “Red” / High-Risk community.

The Commonwealth’s COVID-19 Risk Assessment Map is a weekly public health report issued every Wednesday.  The recent report issued on Wednesday, September 30, 2020, has designed the City of Springfield as a “Red” High-Risk community with a total positive COVID-19 case count of 183 over the last 14 days.  Springfield’s average daily incident rate per 100,000 population is now at 8.3.  Communities designated as a High-Risk community have an average daily case rate of 8+ over the last 14 days. 

Yellow/Moderate-Risk communities have an average daily case rate of 4-8 per 100,000 population over a 14-day period.  Green/Low-Risk communities have an average daily case rate of less than 4 per 100,000 population over a 14-day period.  

As Springfield is now a “Red”/High-Risk community, the City cannot enter Step 2 of Phase 3 of the Commonwealths reopening plan.  Only communities that are “Gray”, “Green” or “Yellow” risk level can move forward on October 5, 2020.      

 


(UPDATE) September 29 ,2020

State Department of Public Health Issues Tips for a Safe and Healthy Halloween

The State Department of Public Health has issued tips for residents to enjoy a safe and healthy Halloween.  These guidelines are taken out of an abundance of caution due to the ongoing COVID-19 Coronavirus pandemic to help prevent and mitigate the community spread of the virus.  

 

Oregon Removed from States Low-Risk List

The Commonwealth has removed the state of Oregon from the low-risk list effective September 26, 2020.

The current list of COVID-19 low-risk states include: Colorado, Connecticut, Maine, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, Vermont and Washington.

 

Governor Baker Announced Step 2 of Phase III Reopening Plan

Governor Baker announced that the Commonwealth will begin Step 2 of the states Phase II reopening plan.  

Under this step, the state will allow indoor and outdoor performance venues with up to 50% capacity or 250 people, whichever is lower.  In addition, the state will allow up to 50% capacity for arcades and recreational businesses with trampolines, obstacle courses, roller rinks and laser tag, as well as gyms, museums, libraries, driving schools and flight academies.  Retail stores will also be allowed to reopen their fitting rooms.

Indoor gatherings will remain limited to 25 peole, and outdoor gatherings at private residences and backyards will remain at 50 people.  Outdoor gatherings in public spaces are limited to 100 people for "Green" Low-risk communities and 50 people for Step 1 communities.  

These changes only apply to communities that have not been deemed "Red" or high-risk over the past three weeks on the state's color-coded map.  

 


(UPDATE) September 24, 2020

City of Springfield and the Spirit of Springfield Announce Plans for the Opening of the World Renowned Bright Nights at Forest Park

The world renowned Bright Nights at Forest Park will open this year, with restrictions as to adhere to all public health and safey protocols and guidelines.

These restrictions include masks, regular cleaning, on-line ticketing and more.  Restrooms will be for emergency use only and the usual bustling gift shop, amusement rides, horse-drawn wagon and carriage rides, and visits with and Supper with Santa will not be available.  These action are taken out of an abundance of caution and to keep all visitors safe and socially distanced in their vehicles during the experience.

 

City of Springfield Listed as Moderate-Risk (Yellow Community) for COVID-19 Cases  

The Massachusetts Department of Public Health (MDPH) has listed Springfield as moderate-risk (Yellow Community) for COVID-19 cases:  4-8 cases per 100,000 for a 14 day period.  Springfield's average daily incidence rate per 100,000 over a 14 day period is 4.29.

     Total Tests Last 14 Days: 10,714

     Positive Tests Last 14 Days: 118

     Percent Positivity: 1.10% 

 


(UPDATE) September 23, 2020

State Updates Seating Guidelines for Restaurants - will allow Bar Seating

Governor Baker announced that the state is updating its COVID-19 guidelines for restaurants and bar seating.

Restaurants will now be allowed to seat 10 people per table inside and will now be able to utilize bar areas for food service, with restrictions.  Bars and nightclubs are to remain closed and are still part of the Commonwealth's Phase 4 reopening plan.  

Restaurants must comply with the following sector specific social distancing rules for providing dining services in all customer seating areas:  

  • Tables must be positioned so to maintain at least a 6 foot distance from all other tables and any high foot traffic areas (e.g., routes to bathrooms, entrances, exits); tables may be positioned closer if separated by protective / non-porous barriers (e.g., structural walls or plexi-glass dividers) not less than 6 feet high installed between tables and high foot traffic areas
  • The size of a party seated at a table cannot exceed 10.

Bar seating is permitted provided that either:

  • There are no active work areas or working staff behind the bar at least 6 ft away; or
  • There is a physical barrier (e.g. Plexiglas) separating customers from the bar space that is at least 30 inches high and a gap/opening at the bottom of the barrier is allowed for food and drink service as long as the gap/opening is no more than 8 inches high
  • In addition, parties must be seated at bars (no standing customer service) and parties must be spaced at least 6 ft from other parties
  • Subject to any applicable building and fire code requirements, bar areas may be re-configured to accommodate table seating that complies with all spacing and other requirements in these COVID-19 safety standards. Tables must not be placed within 6 feet of the staffed bartending area.

 


(UPDATE) September 22, 2020

City of Springfield goes over 3 Million Meals Served as part of the COVID-19 Springfield Public Schools Meals Program

The City of Springfield Public Schools is proud to announce that the district has served over 3 million meals as part of the City's COVID-19 meals program.  

The meals program, which started at the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic and is distributed to the 17 designated sites across the city, is provided by Sodexo and provides breakfast, lunch, dinner and snacks via grab-n-go.  

 

RMV Dedicates Wednesdays in the Month of September to Anyone 74 Years of Age or Older

The Massachusetts Registry of Motor Vehicles (RMV) has dedicated Wednesdays in September at the Springfield RMV, located at the Springfield Plaza, 1250 St. James Ave, to anyone 74 years of age or older to renew with an appointment.  For more information please visit Mass.gov/RMV

 


(UPDATE) September 21, 2020

Wyoming Removed from States Low-Risk List

The Commonwealth has removed Wyonming from the low-risk list effective September 19, 2020.

The current list of COVID-19 low-risk states include: Colorado, Connecticut, Maine, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, Oregon, Vermont and Washington.

 

City of Springfield Extends Stop the Spread Initiative Until October 31, 2020

The City of Springfield announced that the Stop the Spread initiative has been extended until October 31, 2020.  The initiative was set to expire at the end of September.

Those interested in getting their free COVID-19 test can do so at AFC Urgent Care, American Medical Resposne or Fallon EMS.

 


(UPDATE) September 18, 2020

Mayor Sarno Announces $3.5 million for Homeless Services as part of the CARES Act

Mayor Domenic J. Sarno and Chief Development Officer Tim Sheehan announced today that the City of Springfield is awarding $3.5 million in grant funding to four Springfield agencies to provide increased services to people experiencing homelessness.  The federal CARES Act provided the City with an increased allocation of Emergency Solutions Grant (ESG) funds to respond to the COVID-19 Coronavirus pandemic.  The funds awarded today will provide a continuum of services including street outreach, emergency shelter, housing search, and rental assistance.

The agencies receiving funds are:

Catholic Charities

$2,287,295

Clinical and Support Options – Friends of the Homeless

$342,531

New North Citizens Council (NNCC)

$400,000

YWCA of Western Massachusetts

$505,544

 


(UPDATE) September 16, 2020

State Announces Extention of Tax Relief for Certain Small Businesses

The Commonwealth announced that small businesses that have been hit due to the ongoing COVID-19 Coronavirus pandemic, particularly restaurants and places of lodging, will now have until May 2021 to pay some state taxes from March 2020 through April 2021.  

The state Department of Revenue plans to further delay the tax deadlines for certain small businesses.  Sales, meals, and room occupancy taxes for qualifying businesses will not be due until May 2021.  

 


(UPDATE) September 15, 2020

Mayor Sarno asked the City's License Commission to Waive Liquor License Renewal Fees for 2021 for Restaurants and Pouring Establishments

Mayor Domenic J. Sarno has asked the City of Springfield’s License Commission to waive the liquor license renewal fees for 2021. 

Mayor Sarno stated, “My administration has and will continue to work with our businesses and residents to help them survive, stabilize and just as important rebound quickly, as we continue to move to defeat this COVID-19 Coronavirus pandemic.  Simply put, this is the right thing to do.  Many of these establishments are opened only on a limited bases – some not at all.  Every little bit helps.”

 


(UPDATE) September 14, 2020

State Adds Pennsylvania, Delaware and West Virginia to High-Risk List and Adds New Mexico to Low-Risk List

Effective September 12, 2020, the Commonwealth of Massachusetts has added New Mexico to the low-risk state.  In addition, Delaware, Pennsylvania and West Virginia have been removed from the low-risk list and no longer are exempt from the Travel Order.   

 

City of Springfield Reviewing Outdoor Dining Extention

Governor Baker announced earlier this month that he would be signing an executive order that would allow municipalities to extend permitting required to extend ourdoor dining.  The City of Springfield's Licensing Department is currently reviewing the process to allow local dining establishments to extend their outdoor dining into the fall and winter seasons.  

 

City of Springfield Announce Halloween Guidance Admist COVID-19 Coronavirus Pandemic

Mayor Domenic J. Sarno in consultation and at the recommendation and agreement with Health and Human Services (HHS) Commissioner Helen Caulton Harris and the Board of Public Health have announced that unfortunately due to the ongoing COVID-19 Coronavirus pandemic, door-to-door trick or treating will not be allowed this year for Halloween.  However, certain COVID-19 safe events, such as drive by, drive through, drive in, and/or car parade events may take place as long as proper public health and safety protocols and guidelines are followed and adhered to.  

 

Black Lives Matter Mural Painted on Court Street

The Black Lives Matter mural was painted on Court Street on Saturday, September 12, 2020, thanks to the leadership efforts of City Councilor Tracye Whitfield, Mayor Domenic J. Sarno, and the support from our diverse and loving community.

Supporters gathered on Court Street and in Court Square to show solidarity for unity, peace, love, and harmony, and to join with their elected officials in the fight against social injustice and racial unrest. 

 


(UPDATE) September 11, 2020

City of Springfield and Spirit of Springfield hold 9/11 Remembrance Ceremony

The City of Springfield and the Spirit of Springfield held a September 11th Remembrance Ceremony by the 9/11 Monument in Riverfront Park.

The program included remembrances from Springfield Fire Commissioner BJ Calvi; Police Commissioner Cheryl Clapprood; Patrick Pickering, Regional Director for American Medical Response; and Colonel Tom Bladen, Commander of the 104th Fight Wing at Barnes Air National Guard Base.  Mayor Domenic J. Sarno brought greetings and the invocation was done by Father Gary Dailey, Chaplin for the Springfield Fire Department.  Anthony Cignoli, President of A. L. Cignoli Company, served as the master of ceremonies and the voice of Springfield Vanessa Ford sang the National Anthem.

 

SPS to Continue Meal Distribution into the School Year

Springfield Public Schools and its food service provider Sodexo will continue to provide breakfast, lunch, dinner and snacks as they have all summer, though there will be some changes in the distribution schedule beginning next week.

Beginning Monday, September 14th:

  • Meals will be distributed on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays instead of Monday -Friday.  Though pick-up days have been reduced from five per week over the summer to three per week for the fall, the service will still provide meals for seven days a week. Monday pick-up will include meals for Tuesday and Wednesday. Wednesday pick-up will include meals for Thursday and Friday. Friday pick-up will include meals for Saturday, Sunday and Monday.
  • Distribution will continue to occur at 17 sites as it did all summer, but some of the locations have been changed to provide greater convenience to families. Pick up locations will now include: Boland, Brookings, Central, Chestnut, Deberry, Duggan, Forest Park, Harris, Indian Orchard, Lincoln, Milton Bradley, Putnam, Rebecca Johnson, Talmadge, Van Sickle, Warner and Washington.
  • Pick-up hours will be 2 – 6 p.m.  instead of 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. to better accommodate working parents. At the Central High School pick-up location, the Friday pick-up time is 9 a.m. to 3 p.m.

 


(UPDATE) September 10, 2020

City of Springfield to Allow Tag Sales with Restrictions as part of the City’s Phase III Reopening Plan

The Board of Health for the City of Springfield will allow tag sales to resume effective Saturday, September 12, 2020, with restrictions, as part of the City of Springfield’s Phase III reopening plans.

Those individuals seeking to hold a tag sale need to request a permit through the City Clerk’s Office and must adhere to the COVID-19 guidance as stated below.  

  • Face coverings should be worn at all times
  • Individuals should adhere to the social distancing guidelines
  • No more than ten (10) persons at one time
  • Gloves should be worn by participants and organizers
  • No trying on of clothes or other garments

Residents can contact the City Clerk’s Office to schedule an appointment to request a Tag Sale permit at (413) 750-3298 or email at clerks@springfieldcityhall.com

Residents are also encouraged to contact the City’s COVID-19 hotline at (413) 750-3250 for information related to the Coronavirus or to report any COVID-19 related concerns.  

 

Governor Baker to sign Executive Orders allowing Indoor and Outdoor Arcades to Resume and to Extend the Time Local Municipalities can Permit Outdoor Dining

Governor Charlie Baker will sign an executive order that will allow indoor and outdoor aracdes to resume next week under the Commonwealths Phase III reopening plans instead of having to wait until Phase IV as was originally planned.  The Governor will also sign an executive order that will extend the timeframe for local municipalities permitting for expand outdoor dining.    

 


(UPDATE) September 9, 2020

DESE Issues New Guidance for School Nurses

The state released new guidance for school nurses as school districts look to reopen.

Schools must have a designated medical waiting room for students who show symptons of COVID-19 Coronavirus.  These rooms do not have to be staffed by a school nurse.  Any school staff person who is CPR/AED certified can staff the room and must wear the appropriate PPE.   

 


(UPDATE) September 8, 2020

Additional Stop the Spread Testing Site Added in Springfield

  • As part of the Commonwealth’s Stop the Spread initiative the City of Springfield and the state Department of Public Health, in partnership with AFC Urgent Care, Tapestry Health, Baystate Health, AMR and Fallon EMS held additional free testing sites across the city

 

Oregon, Washington state and Wyoming Designatec Lower-risk – Now Exempt from Travel Order

The Massachusetts Travel Order, which took effect on August 1st, has been updated to exempt Oregon, Wyoming, and the State of Washington.

Travelers from COVID-19 lower-risk States are not required to fill out the Massachusetts Travel Form and do not need to quarantine. States are included on the list based on meeting two criteria: average daily cases per 100K below 6 AND positive test rate below 5%, both measured as a 7-day rolling average. 

 

(UPDATE) August 28, 2020

City of Springfield and America Medical Response Join Commonwealth to Offer Additional Free COVID-19 Testing in Springfield

As part of Massachusetts’ Stop the Spread effort, the City of Springfield supports American Medical Response (AMR) as they facilitate free COVID-19 testing at the Eastfield Mall in Springfield. Testing will begin Saturday August 29th and run through Saturday September 12th, with the exception of Labor Day on Monday September 7th.  

Testing is available on a drive-through only basis at the Eastfield Mall located at 1655 Boston Road, Springfield, MA between 8:00 a.m. and 6:00 p.m. Appointments are not necessary, but pre-registration  is encouraged.

 

Colorado, Delaware, West Virginia and Pennsylvania Designated Lower-Risk, Now Exempt from Massachusetts Travel Order

The Massachusetts Travel Order, which took effect on August 1st, has been updated to exempt Colorado, Delware, West Virginia, and Pennsylvania.

Travelers from COVID-19 lower-risk States are not required to fill out the Massachusetts Travel Form and do not need to quarantine. States are included on the list based on meeting two criteria: average daily cases per 100K below 6 AND positive test rate below 5%, both measured as a 7-day rolling average. 

Visit https://www.mass.gov/info-details/covid-19-travel-order#lower-risk-states- for the most up to date Travel Order information. 

­


(UPDATE) August 27, 2020

MDPH Reports Springfield at Lower Risk Level

The Massachusetts Department of Public health (MDPH) COVID-19 Public Health Reports list Springfield as lower risk. The Lower  Risk range is a consistent daily case rate of less than 4 cases per 100,000 residents for a 14-day period. The City of Springfield, Mayor Sarno, and the Health and Human Services Department led by Commissioner Helen Caulton-Harris responded proactively to mitigate the spread of the Coronavirus in our community. The City of Springfield will continue to monitor the situation and adhere to any and all public health and safety measures recommended by the health experts, the Governor’s Office, the Massachusetts Department of Public Health, the CDC and other state and federal agencies.  

 

Mayor Sarno, Governor Baker, Congressman Neal and other Officials Announce $51.3 million Elm Street Redevelopment Project

Mayor Domenic J. Sarno today joined with Congressman Richard E. Neal, Governor Charlie Baker, officials from MassMutual, MGM, and MassHousing, and other project stakeholders to officially launch the historic $51.3 million Elm Street Redevelopment and Preservation Project. 

This strategic downtown economic development project is made possible by an unprecedented public-private partnership.  This partnership includes the Springfield Redevelopment Authority (SRA) and the City of Springfield who are currently undertaking a $4 million environmental clean-up of potentially hazardous materials from the Elm Street buildings (as their participation in the Project).  The partnership includes funding from numerous entities including $5 million from MassMutual, $14.5 million from MassHousing’s Workforce Housing Initiative, and $16 million from MGM, with this funding collectively structured as a loan.  The Developer, OPAL/ WinnDevelopment, has also secured approximately $11.3 million in state and federal historic tax credits.  They will apply these historic tax credits together with developer equity, a conventional mortgage, and a commitment from the Unions Trades to assist with $500,000 of housing funds to round out the total of $51.3 million of required funding.

 


(UPDATE) August 26, 2020

City of Springfield Reports Zero '0' New COVID-19 Cases Tuesday, August 25th

Mayor Domenic J. Sarno and Health and Human Services Commissioner Helen Caulton-Harris are pleased to announce that there was zero (0) new COVID-19 Coronavirus cases reported in the City of Springfield on Tuesday, August 25, 2020.

Mayor Sarno stated, “This is such great news to hear.  I want to thank Commissioner Helen Caulton-Harris and her team, our entire city team, the medical professionals out there and especially our residents and business community for taking this COVID-19 pandemic seriously.  For the past few days, even weeks now, our daily numbers have been steadily declining.  This milestone of ‘zero’ new cases on Tuesday is a testament that our approach in dealing with this ongoing pandemic is working.  The City is taking these public health and safety measures out of an abundance of caution and based on the health, medical and scientific data.  However, even with this good news, we cannot relent.  We must remain vigilant if we are to defeat this virus.  We must be able to secure and continue additional testing until there is a vaccine in order to build up our consumer and citizen confidence.”

 


(UPDATE) August 24, 2020

DESE Issues Expectations for Teachers to Report to Classroom for Remote Learning - SPS to Begin School Year with Remote Learning

The Massachusetts Department of Elementary and Secondary Education issued a statement Friday, August 21, 2020 stating that it is expected that teachers and staff are to report to their schools and classrooms to conduct remote learning for those districts which have planned to begin the school year with remote learning.

Mayor Sarno, Superintendent Warwick, the Springfield Public Schools, and the Springfield School Committee have already voted and approved that SPS will begin the school year remotely and that Springfield teachers will teach remotely.  The remote learning system put in place by SPS was deemed the most prudent measure to keep our students and teachers/staff safe amid the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.  

The City of Springfield will continue to review and evaluate the ventilation and safety measures in all public schools and will work closely with the Health and Human Services Department on all public health aspects.  An industrial hygienist has also been hired by the City to test and review the ventilation and filtration systems for all of the 57 school buildings.  

 


(UPDATE) August 20, 2020

Massachusetts Schools Immunization Requirements for 2020-2021

The 2020-21 school year will see the addition of a new immunization requirement for influenza vaccine for attending childcare/preschool, grades kindergarten – 12 and postsecondary institutions. The documents, FAQ - Influenza Vaccine Requirement for Childcare Attendance for Children 6 Months of Age and OlderFAQ - Influenza Vaccine Requirement for School Attendance, and FAQ – Influenza Vaccine Requirement for Attendance at Postsecondary Institutions, answer frequently asked questions about the new requirement.

This is a mandate from the MDPH to reduce the impact of flu-related and respiratory illnesses during the COVID-19 pandemic. Requirements apply to all students including individuals from another country attending or visiting classes or educational programs as part of an academic visitation or exchange program. Requirements apply to all students, even if over 18 years of age.


MDPH Reports Springfield at Moderate Risk Level

The Massachusetts Department of Public health (MDPH) COVID-19 Public Health Reports list Springfield as moderate risk. The Moderate Risk range is a consistent daily case rate of 4-8 cases per 100,000 residents for a 14-day period. The City of Springfield, Mayor Sarno, and the Health and Human Services Department led by Commissioner Helen Caulton-Harris responded proactively to mitigate the spread of the Coronavirus in our community. The City of Springfield will continue to monitor the situation and adhere to any and all public health and safety measures recommended by the health experts, the Governor’s Office, the Massachusetts Department of Public Health, the CDC and other state and federal agencies.  


(UPDATE) August 18, 2020

City of Springfield and Tapestry Health Announce Additional COVID-19 Testing Sites

Mayor Domenic J. Sarno and Health and Human Services (HHS) Commissioner Helen Caulton-Harris announce that the City of Springfield and Tapestry Health will offer additional testing sites for residents.  The additional testing sites are in support of the Commonwealth’s Stop the Spread initiative and continues the City’s commitment to mitigate the community spread of the COVID-19 Coronavirus.

Appointments and pre-registration is strongly encouraged, however walk-ins will not be turned away if there is capacity. Those interested in being tested should call Tapestry Health at (413) 364-2149.  

 

Springfield Public Schools Remote Opening Frequently Asked Questions

SPS has provided an updated list of FAQs for school reopening plans. 

How will schools open on September 15th?

The Springfield School Committee voted on August 6, 2020 to open schools with students learning remotely five days per week.  Full remote learning will be implemented through the end of the 1st marking period and, if conditions permit, the district will shift to hybrid learning at the start of the 2nd marking period.

How will a decision be made on whether to implement hybrid learning for the 2nd marking period?

The decision will be based on any new information regarding the COVID pandemic as well as the progress of additional efforts to ensure buildings are safe for students to return.

Click here to visit the SPS website and see full list of FAQs about about getting back to school safely.

 


(UPDATE) August 17, 2020

State Removes Hawaii from Safe Travel Order - No Longer Low-Risk State

The State Department of Public Health (DPH) has removed the state of Hawaii from the list of states where travelers are exempt from the new Travel Order.  Hawaii is no longer considered a low-risk state according to DPH.

Travelers entering Massachusetts from Hawaii will now have to either quarantine for two weeks or get a negative COVID-19 test within 72 hours before entering Massachusetts.

This action is in response to Hawaii's positive COVID-19 test rate and cases per capita.  

 


 

(UPDATE) August 10, 2020

City of Springfield to Open Cooling Centers

Mayor Domenic J. Sarno and Health and Human Services Commissioner Helen Caulton-Harris announced today that the City of Springfield will be opening Cooling Centers on Monday, August 10, 2020 through Wednesday, August 12, 2020.  

 


 

(UPDATE) August 7, 2020

Governor Baker Announces New Initiatives to Stop the Spread of COVID-19

Governor Charlie Baker announced a new set of initiatives aimed at stopping the spread of COVID-19 in Massachusetts, especially in higher risk communities that have seen a recent uptick in cases. While Massachusetts has seen a decrease in COVID-19 cases and hospitalizations since May, there has been a slight uptick in certain communities in recent days.

Statewide Guidance:

Governor Baker is signing an updated gatherings order, effective Tuesday, August 11,  which will:

  • Reduce the limit on outdoor gatherings from 100 to 50 people (indoor gatherings limit will remain at 25 people)
  • Apply these limits to all types of gatherings, on both public and private property
  • Require face coverings where more than 10 people from different households will be mixing.

Due to the recent increase in positive cases, step two of phase III of the Commonwealth’s reopening plan has been postponed indefinitely.

Restaurant rules have been updated to state that alcoholic beverages may only be served for on-site consumption if accompanied by orders for food prepared on-site. The administration will be taking measures to ensure that bars masquerading as restaurants will be closed.

Public safety officials, including state and local law enforcement, have the jurisdiction to enforce these orders and event hosts in violation of these orders will be subject to fines or cease and desist orders.

To read the gatherings order, click here.

To read the updated restaurant protocols, click here.

 

Cross-Agency COVID Enforcement and Intervention Team: 

The Administration also announced a targeted cross-agency COVID Enforcement and Intervention Team that will be responsible for ramping up enforcement statewide and coordinating local intervention efforts at the local level in higher risk COVID-19 communities. 

Communities will be designated as higher risk COVID-19 communities based on public health data, including but not limited to rising trends for new cases and the percentage of positive COVID tests. 

Member agencies include the Executive Office and Public Safety and Security (EOPSS) and the Massachusetts Emergency Management Agency (MEMA), who will serve as coordinators of the team, the Command Center, the Massachusetts State Police (MSP), the Department of Labor Standards (DLS), the Division of Professional Licensure (DPL), the Department of Public Health (DPH), the Division of Local Services (DLS), the Alcoholic Beverages Control Commission (ABCC) and the Executive Office of Technology Services and Security (EOTSS).

 

Stop the Spread:

Last month, the Administration launched the Stop the Spread initiative, which provides free testing to residents in targeted communities throughout the Commonwealth.

There are currently sites in 17 communities: Agawam, Brockton, Chelsea, Everett, Fall River, Framingham, Lawrence, Lowell, Lynn, Marlborough, Methuen, New Bedford, Randolph, Revere, Springfield, Taunton, and Worcester.

The initiative is a data-driven focused effort to reduce the prevalence of COVID-19 in communities that are above the state average in total cases, positive test rate, and have experienced a decline in testing levels since April. These sites are open to all residents of the Commonwealth.

Today, the Administration announced the extension of free testing in these 17 communities through September 12.

Statewide Enforcement and Intervention will include: 

  • Targeted interventions and inspections by a range of member agencies, including Local Services, Labor Standards, DPH, MSP and ABCC, coordinated by EOPSS and MEMA.
  • Increased enforcement, including fines, of sector guidance for businesses to ensure businesses and residents are aware of and following COVID-19 orders.
  • Support for ABCC and local licensing boards in exercising their existing authority to fine restaurants or suspend or cancel liquor licenses when restaurants do not comply with required COVID-19 safety measures.
  • Targeted public messaging campaign to alert residents of higher risk COVID communities (road signs, PSAs, etc.).
  • Technical support to local government officials to support enhanced local COVID-19 prevention efforts such as assistance in accessing CARES Act funding.
  • Potential restrictions or shutdowns for parks, playgrounds, businesses or other entities and locations believed to be contributing to the COVID-19 spread in higher risk COVID-19 communities.
  • Additional resources for public health support such as testing, tracing and quarantining.

For more information click here.

 


(UPDATE) August 5, 2020

City of Springfield Responds and Recovers from Tropical Storm Isaias

Mayor Sarno declared a state of emergency in the City of Springfield due to Tropical Storm Isaias, which had damaging winds at tropical storm or hurricane force levels that brought numerous trees and branches down damaging properties and knocking out power across the City.  In addition, there was a major water main break on East Columbus Ave, which had left most of the city either without water or with low pressure.

City continues to monitor the situation to restore power and water outages throughout the city.  As a result of the impact of Tropical Storm Isaias throughout the City of Springfield, the Department of Public Works (DPW) will be responsible for the collection of tree debris / yard waste as part of the City’s standard yard waste collection protocol.  The DPW will pick up tree debris, yard and leaf waste at the curb from Springfield residents on alternating weeks, the same day that recycling is set out. Yard waste and leaves should be placed loosely in a 32 gallon barrel with handles or in special paper thirty (30) gallon capacity leaf bags.

DPW Tree Debris Pick-Up Guidance

 

Springfield School Committee Held a Virtual Town Hall Meeting    

Springfield School Committee held a virtual town hall meeting on Tuesday, August 4, 2020 to gather community feedback about the districts back-to-school plans.  Parents were able to provide comments and questions about the three purposed plans for the reopening of the 2020-2021 school year.  

 


(UPDATE) August 4, 2020

State Removes Rhode Island from Safe Travel Order - No Longer Low-Risk State

The State Department of Public Health (DPH) has removed the state of Rhode Island from the list of states where travelers are exempt from the new Travel Order.  Rhode Island is no longer considered a low-risk state according to DPH.

Travelers entering Massachusetts from Rhode Island will now have to either quarantine for two weeks or get a negative COVID-19 test within 72 hours before entering Massachusetts.

This action is in response to Rhode Island's positive COVID-19 test rate and cases per capita.  

 


(UPDATE) August 3, 2020

City of Springfield and State Department of Public Health Announce Partnerships in Support of Stop the Spread Initiative

Mayor Domenic J. Sarno and Health and Human Services (HHS) Commissioner Helen Caulton-Harris announce that as part of the Commonwealth’s Stop the Spread initiative the City of Springfield and the state Department of Public Health, in partnership with AFC Urgent Care and Tapestry Health will open free testing sites in the City of Springfield.

AFC Urgent Care at 415 Cooley Street, Springfield, MA will offer Asymptomatic COVID-19 testing through Friday, August 14, 2020.  Walk-ins are welcomed but to avoid long waiting times, residents are encouraged to call for an appointment at (413) 782-4878 or go to their website at www.afcurgentcarespringfield.com and click on the “Stop the Spread Asymptomatic COVID-19 Registration” link.

Tapestry Health will offer Asymptomatic COVID-19 testing at three sites and only on the specified dates and time.  All testing is by appointment only.  Those interested should call (413) 364-2149 for an appointment.  Please note that each site can only accommodate testing for 24 persons.

In addition, Baystate Health is also planning on opening up a stand up site.  Location, time and appointment details TBA at a later date.   

Click here to view more info on Stop the Spread

 


(UPDATE) August 1, 2020

Massachusetts New Travel Order Takes Effect

The Commonwealth's Travel Order takes effect today, August 1st.

 

All travelers entering Massachusetts—both out of state residents and Massachusetts residents returning home—must comply with a new travel order. This includes students returning to campuses for the fall semester.

COVID-19 Travel Order

The new travel order requires all visitors and returning residents to fill out a “Massachusetts Traveler Form” unless they are coming from a state that has been designated a lower risk COVID-19 state or fall into an exemption category. The new travel order also provides that visitors and returning residents arriving in Massachusetts from any place other than a COVID-19 lower-risk state must quarantine for 14-days unless they can produce a negative COVID-19 test result administered on a sample taken not more than 72-hours prior to arriving in Massachusetts.

The Massachusetts Traveler Form can be found here: https://www.mass.gov/forms/massachusetts-travel-form.

Information on exemptions, how to quarantine, testing as an alternative to quarantine, and what we all can do to stop the spread can be found at:https://www.mass.gov/info-details/covid-19-travel-order#massachusetts-travel-form-

 


(UPDATE) July 31, 2020

Springfield School Committee votes to start 2020-2021 School Year Two Weeks Later 

The start of the 2020-2021 school year was pushed back two weeks after the School Committee voted on Thursday, July 30, 2020.

The original start to the school year had students in grades 1 - 12 scheduled to return August 31, 2020 and students in kindergarten to start one week after that and pre-kindergarteners the week after kindergarten.  The new start dates for grades 1 - 12 will be September 15, 2020.  Kindergarten will start September 21, 2020 and pre-kindergarteners on September 28, 2020.

The Springfield Public Schools (SPS) are considering three formats for a return to school, per state guidelines: full in-person return, full remote learning, and a hybrid version of both in-person and remote learning.

The City of Springfield has already distributed over 17,000 laptops to students for remote learning.  

The school year will also be reduced from 180 days to 170 days to allow districts to prepare for the start of the schol year.   

 

State Legislature Approves Measure to Suspend Joint Rule 12A and Continue Formal Sessions past July 31 deadline 

Both branches, House and Senate, have agreed on an measure to continue the legislative session until the end of the year due to the COVID-19 Coronavirus pandemic.   

Under normal rules (Joint Rule 12A), both branches have their legislative sessions end the last day in July in the second year of the two  year legislative session.  Any pending legistion needs to be acted upon before this deadline or they are considered languished or dead.  Now with this new agreement, both branches will have additional time to conduct formal sessions to pass a variety of pending bills.  This action was taken due to the unprecedented disruptions to the branches sessions due to the pandemic.

 


(UPDATE) July 29, 2020

State Legislature Purposes to Extend Formal Sessions past July 31 due to COVID-19

Due to the ongoing COVID-19 Coronavirus pandemic, House Speaker Robert DeLeo is purposing having the State Legislature extend their formal sessions past July 31.  

The purposed order would suspend the rule which usual ends the legislative session at 11:59 p.m. on July 31.  The House unanimously voted to approve the order.  The motion now makes its way to the state Senate for approval.  Under the rules, each branch needs a two-thirds vote to suspend the rule.

By approving the extension order, the state Legislature would have more time to take action on pending legislation that would otherwise languish in committee or on the floor.  Current matters pending before the House and Senate include but not limited too; an Economic Development bill, IT Bond Bill, Police Reform Bill, Health Care and COVID-19 related matters, the FY21 State Budget, Climate Change Bill, and Sports Betting Legalization to name a few.

 


(UPDATE) July 28, 2020

State Department of Elementary and Secondary Education (DESE) Announced Major Changes for the 2020-2021 School Year - School Year will start Two Weeks later, School Busing Changes and Protocols for Checking in School Coronavirus-like Symptoms

The Commissioner of DESE Jeff Riley announced that the school year will start two weeks later than initially planned this fall.  The school year will be reduced from 180 days to 170 days.  This change will allow school districts an additional 10 days to prepare for the start of the 2020-2021 school year.  School districts must start no later than September 16, 2020 and must have three (3) educatinoal plans; full return to in-person classroom, hybrid of in-person and remote learning, and full remote learning.  

The state had previously announced additional school reopening plans which include; reconfiguration of desk in classroom to allow social distancing (atleast 3 feet distance), limiting traffic in hallways, installing sanitiing stations, utilize alternative spaces for classrooms to encourage social distancing (auditoriums, gyms, libraries, etc), and all staff and students in second grade and older will be required to wear a mask.   

In addition, school busing will be different.  All staff and students, regardless of age, will be required to wear a mask at all times (with the exemptions for those with medical and/or behavioral reasons).  The new guidelines will also significantly decrease the number of students on each bus.    

School districts will also need to create a designated medical waiting room where students can be picked up by their parents or guardians if they exhibits COVID-19 symptoms.  If staff or students show Coronavirus-like symptoms during the school day, they will be evaluated by the school nurse.  Any staff or student exhibiting Coronavirus-like symptoms will head home and follow testing protocols which include getting tested and having a negative test before returning to school or self-quarantine for two weeks.

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(UPDATE) July 27, 2020

Governor Baker Announces Additional Locations for Free COVID-19 testing

Mayor Sarno after speaking with Lt. Governor Karyn Polito is pleased that Governor Baker has announced that the state will be opening a free COVID-19 testing site in Springfield as part of the states "Stop the Spread" initiative.

The Commonwealth is launching this strategic testing program to help stop and mitigate the community spread of the virus in communities across the state where there is might be higher rates and potential for community spread.  This program supports the testing of asymptomatic individuals in these communities.  The testing is provided at no cost to residents and will be available through August 14, 2020.  Note: testing at these sites is not restricted to the residents of the city or town.

The "Stop the Spread" initiative was launched July 10, 2020.  

 

City of Springfield Awards 14 New Grants to Local Non-Profits as part of the Fourth Round of Prime the Pump Grant Program

Mayor Domenic J. Sarno and Chief Development Officer Tim Sheehan announced today the awarding of 14 grants totaling $240,000 in a Fourth Round of the City of Springfield’s Prime the Pump grant program, assisting Non-Profits that are responding to critical community needs related to the Covid-19 pandemic.

The Prime the Pump Program was initially announced on March 18, 2020.  The City, to date, has seen an overwhelming need for financial assistance within its small business community and has awarded in excess of $1,250,000 to address that need in a meaningful way.  The announcement of today’s grants brings the total economic development grant assistance provided by the Prime the Pump Program to over $1.5 Million. 

 


 

(UPDATE) July 24, 2020 

Massachusetts COVID-19 Travel Order Takes Effect August 1st

Governor Baker announced today, that effective August 1st, all travelers entering Massachusetts—both out of state residents and Massachusetts residents returning home—must comply with a new travel order. This includes students returning to campuses for the fall semester.

COVID-19 Travel Order

The new travel order requires all visitors and returning residents to fill out a “Massachusetts Traveler Form” unless they are coming from a state that has been designated a lower risk COVID-19 state or fall into an exemption category. The new travel order also provides that visitors and returning residents arriving in Massachusetts from any place other than a COVID-19 lower-risk state must quarantine for 14-days unless they can produce a negative COVID-19 test result administered on a sample taken not more than 72-hours prior to arriving in Massachusetts.

The Massachusetts Traveler Form can be found here: https://www.mass.gov/forms/massachusetts-travel-form.

Information on exemptions, how to quarantine, testing as an alternative to quarantine, and what we all can do to stop the spread can be found at:https://www.mass.gov/info-details/covid-19-travel-order#massachusetts-travel-form-


(UPDATE) July 21, 2020

Governor Baker extends Moratorium for most Evictions and Foreclosures

Most evictions and foreclosure will remain banned in Massachusetts until Oct. 17, 2020 under an extension to the COVID-prompted moratorium Gov. Charlie Baker triggered on Tuesday.  The Governor's actions will add another 60 days to a temporary ban that was set to expire on August 18, 2020.  The moratorium law, which Governor Baker signed on April 20, 2020, prevents almost all non-emergency evictions and foreclosures due to the ongoing COVID-19 Coronavirus pandemic.  

This extension to the moratorium DOES NOT waive the financial obligation due.  Both renters and homeowners are still financially liable for their rents and/or mortgages.  The moratorium DOES state that renters and homeowners cannot be forced to pay late penalties if they demonstrate that they are experiencing hardships as a direct result of the pandemic outbreak.  

 

State Allows Restaurants to Sell Sealed Containers of Mixed Drinks with their Takeout Food Orders

Governor Baker signed into law a bill that will allow restaurants to sell sealed containers of mixed drinks with their takeout food orders.  This To-Go Cocktail law aims to help restaurants by generating additional revenue stream amid the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.  The legislation follows an earlier law that allowed restraunants to sell beer and wine alongside takeout and delivery orders.  The sale of limited quantities of beer, wine and mixed drinks for off-premises consumption will stay in effect through February 2021 or until the COVID-19 state of emergency is lifted, whichever comes later.  

 


 

(UPDATE) July 20, 2020

City of Springfield to Keep Cooling Centers Open

Mayor Domenic J. Sarno and Health and Human Services Commissioner Helen Caulton-Harris announced today that the City of Springfield will be opening Cooling Centers on Tuesday, July 21, 2020.  

Due to the COVID-19 pandemic locations and number of cooling centers have changed. Because of the limited access to buildings that are being utilized for feeding sites for Springfield Public Schools; Senior Centers are currently not opened; and Libraries having limited access, alternate sites will be opened. In addition, the Governors COVID-19 guidance limits the number of individuals who can gather indoors to twenty-five. These sites will accommodate the maximum (25) and residents should be able to socially distance. To access the sites, face coverings will be required. Staff will also be asking for names; phone numbers and address should in the unlikely event a participant needs to be contacted. The City of Springfield continues to practice an abundance of caution in adhering to recommended safe practices. Your patience is appreciated as we continue to combat this deadly COVID-19 virus.

 


(UPDATE) July 16, 2020

Springfield Awards 84 New Grants to Local Small Businesses as part of the Third Round of Prime the Pump

Mayor Domenic J. Sarno and Chief Development Officer Tim Sheehan announced today the awarding of 84 grants totaling over $500,000 in the third round of the City of Springfield’s Prime the Pump program, assisting businesses in response to the economic crisis spurred from emergency closures due to Covid-19.

The Prime the Pump Program was initially announced on March 18, 2020.  The City to date has seen an overwhelming need for financial assistance within its small business community with 340 grant applications filed to date with the Development Services Division representing over $4.5 Million in funding requests. To date the program has awarded over $1.2 Million to 191 small businesses.  The program has assisted businesses in every neighborhood of the city and the awards are reflective of the diversity of small business ownership in Springfield. The program has realized the creation or retention of hundreds of low to moderate-income jobs that were at risk.

 

City of Springfield to Open Cooling Centers

Mayor Domenic J. Sarno and Health and Human Services Commissioner Helen Caulton-Harris announced today that the City of Springfield will be opening Cooling Centers on Saturday, July 18, 2020 through Monday July 20, 2020.  

Due to the COVID-19 pandemic locations and number of cooling centers have changed. Because of the limited access to buildings that are being utilized for feeding sites for Springfield Public Schools; Senior Centers are currently not opened; and Libraries having limited access, alternate sites will be opened. In addition, the Governors COVID-19 guidance limits the number of individuals who can gather indoors to twenty-five. These sites will accommodate the maximum (25) and residents should be able to socially distance. To access the sites, face coverings will be required. Staff will also be asking for names; phone numbers and address should in the unlikely event a participant needs to be contacted. The City of Springfield continues to practice an abundance of caution in adhering to recommended safe practices. Your patience is appreciated as we continue to combat this deadly COVID-19 virus.

 


 

(UPDATE) July 13, 2020

MGM Springfield, the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame and the Springfield Musuems have Reopened as part of the States Phase III Reopening Plan

MGM Springfield reopened to the public today, with restrictions and under the state Phase III reopening plans.  The Massachusetts Gaming Commission also approved their reopening plan as their facility will follow all state and local public health measures and protocols to build consumer confidence while providing the world reknowned entertainment and draw they are known for.

The Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame reopened on July 8th, with restrictions, following its $23 million renovation which began in 2017.  New exhibits and technological improvements will greet and wow visitors.  The Hall of Fame will also adhere to all state and local public health and safety measures and have implemented numerous protocols to assure visitor safety and wellbeing.  

The Springfield Museums reopened today, with restrictions and public health and safety protocols.  A new exhibit based on Disney Junior's hit series "The Lion Guard" will great children and families, along with the Museums other nationaly reknowned displays and exhibits.  

 


 

(UPDATE) July 7, 2020

Mayor Sarno Toured MGM Springfield to See Comprehensive Reopening Plans

Mayor Domenic J. Sarno, along with key members of his administration, joined with MGM Springfield President and COO Chris Kelley and other MGM officials for a tour of MGM Springfield to see first-hand their comprehensive reopening plans.  MGM Springfield is scheduled to reopen, in part and with restrictions, Monday, July 13, 2020.

MGM Resorts’ will follow a comprehensive “Seven-Point Safety Plan”  which was developed in conjunction with an epidemiologist and other health experts to assure the wellbeing of the public and their workforce. MGM Springfield will also be following strict Massachusetts Gaming Commission (MGC) guidelines where the property will be adhering to a substantially reduced capacity limit during the initial phase of reopening.

The City of Springfield will continue to work closely with MGM Springfield, medical experts, the MGC and other state officials as the casino begins the phased reopening of their facility and amenities. 


(UPDATE) July 2, 2020

Reopening Massachusetts: Governor Baker Announces Transition to Third Phase of Four-Phase Reopening Approach

The following businesses will be eligible to reopen in Step One of Phase III, subject to industry-specific rules concerning capacity and operations: 

  • Movie theaters and outdoor performance venues;
  • Museums, cultural and historical sites; 
  • Fitness centers and health clubs;
  • Certain indoor recreational activities with low potential for contact;
  • Professional sports teams, under the authority of league-wide rules, may hold games without spectators

Full guidance and list of businesses eligible to reopen in Step One of Phase III can be found at www.mass.gov/reopening. Businesses and sectors set to begin opening in Phase III are subject to compliance with all mandatory safety standards.

Revised Gatherings Order: 

Under the updated gatherings order, indoor gatherings are limited to eight people per 1,000 square feet, but should not exceed 25 people in a single enclosed, indoor space.

Outdoor gatherings in enclosed spaces are limited to 25 percent of the facility’s maximum permitted occupancy, with a maximum of 100 people in a single enclosed outdoor space. This includes community events, civic events, sporting events, concerts, conventions and more. This order does not apply to outdoor, unenclosed gatherings if proper social distancing measures are possible.

This revised order does not supersede previously issued sector guidance, and is effective beginning Monday, July 6. It will be effective Monday, July 13 in the City of Boston.

Public Health Guidance:

In Phase III, health care providers may continue to provide in-person procedures and services as allowed in Phase II, with the addition of certain group treatment programs and day programs. These programs include adult day health, day habilitation programs, and substance abuse services day treatment and outpatient services. Certain human services programs can reopen including community based day services for adults with intellectual and cognitive disabilities and psychosocial rehabilitation clubhouses.        

Health care providers are subject to compliance with all mandatory safety standards, and must continue to utilize prioritization policies established in Phase II for care delivery and scheduling, as well as monitor patient volume for non-essential, elective procedures and services.

Read the full guidance here.

In Phase III, visitation guidelines have been updated for 24/7 congregate care facilities and programs overseen by the Executive Office of Health and Human Services, including the Departments of Developmental Services, Youth Services, Children and Families, Public Health, Mental Health and the Mass Rehabilitation Commission. Offsite visits, including overnight visits, will be allowed, under specific guidelines. Other updated guidelines, including visitation for long term care facilities, will be released later today. Complete visitation guidance is available at www.mass.gov/hhs/reopening.  

MassHealth will also extend its current telehealth flexibility through at least the end of the year to ensure member access to critical health care services and encourage continued adherence to preventative public health precautions. 

 

City of Springfield Announces $250,000 in Fourth Round of Prime the Pump

Mayor Domenic J. Sarno and Chief Development Officer Tim Sheehan today announced the release of $250,000 for a Fourth Round of the Prime the Pump Grant Program, to assist Springfield non-profit organizations, which have been economically impacted by the Covid-19 Coronavirus pandemic.  

The Prime the Pump Program was initially announced on March 18, 2020.  Since that time, the city has advanced over $1,250,000 to assist the city’s small businesses and restaurants in dealing with the economic impacts of the pandemic and the associated public health orders.  The Prime the Pump Program to date has touched small businesses in every neighborhood of the city and has provided assistance to many minority and women owned businesses. Today’s announcement brings Springfield’s grant assistance to local employers to $1,500,000.

 


(UPDATE) July 1, 2020

Massachusetts Department of Elementary and Secondary Education Releases Update for Fall School Reopning Guidance

The Department of Elementary and Secondary Education released initial guidance for school reopening on June 25th with a focus on safely returning as many student as possible to in-person settings. Those guidelines were updated on July 1st. 

 Adult Education: NRS Remote and Physically Distant In Person Test Administration: Guidance for MA NRS Test Administrators, July 2020
 Initial Return-to-School Guidance — Updated
 MTEL Testing Centers Reopening Page Updated
 On the Desktop: Initial Fall School Reopening Guidance

 

Visit the Massachusetts Department of Education website: http://www.doe.mass.edu/covid19/.  


(UPDATE) June 30, 2020

Massachusetts Updated Travel Guidelines to Support COVID-19 Response 

Effective Wednesday, July 1, all travelers arriving to Massachusetts, including residents returning home, are instructed to self-quarantine for 14-days. This guidance does not apply to travelers from Rhode Island, Connecticut, Vermont, New Hampshire, Maine, New York or New Jersey. Additionally, workers designated by the federal government as essential critical infrastructure workers are also exempt from this directive.  

Travelers who are displaying symptoms of COVID-19 are instructed to not travel to Massachusetts. 

All visitors and residents of Massachusetts are also reminded that the use of masks or face coverings in public places where individuals cannot socially distance from others remains required.

These new guidelines replace previously announced Massachusetts travel guidance. For national travel information, please visit www.travel.state.gov


 


(UPDATE) June 22, 2020

Massachusetts RMV Offers License Renewal Incentive

The Massachusetts Registry of Motor Vehicles (RMV) is encouraging all eligible customers to renew their standard Massachusetts driver’s license or Massachusetts ID card online at Mass.Gov/RMV any time between now and August 12, 2020, in order to qualify for a free upgrade to a REAL ID credential in 2021. This one-time, time limited offer is available to most customers who have an expired or expiring license or ID card dated between March 2020 and August 2021, as renewals are allowed up to two years after expiration, or up to a year in advance of the expiration date printed on their license or ID.

Qualifying customers who complete their renewal online prior to August 12th and wish to upgrade to a REAL ID for free, will have to wait until at least February 2021 to visit an RMV Service Center. At this time, customers will not need a federally-compliant REAL ID for the purposes of boarding domestic flights prior to October 1, 2021 because the federal government delayed the compliance effective date by one-year. The fee for obtaining a standard or REAL ID license is $50, while the fee for obtaining a standard or REAL ID card is $25. The typical $25 upgrade / amendment fee will be waived under these qualifying circumstances. A limited digital campaign – “Stay Safe, Save Time, Go Online -- will also accompany this promotion and can be viewed at this link:

https://youtu.be/B3NuHgTwa3Q

 

Massachusetts Transitions to Step 2 of Phase 2 of Reopening

The following will be eligible to reopen in Step Two of Phase II on Monday, June 22:

  • Indoor table service at restaurants;
  • Close contact personal services, with restrictions;
  • Retail dressing rooms, by appointment only;
  • Offices, at 50 percent capacity

Full list and safety protocols available at www.mass.gov/reopening.

In order to give Step 2 businesses time to prepare, the Administration had previously released sector-specific guidance in advance of Phase II for industries including restaurants, close-contact personal services and sectors not otherwise addressed:  

Before these sectors can resume operations under the guidelines, businesses must meet all safety standards, create a COVID-19 control plan, and complete a self-certification.

VIEW CONTROL PLAN TEMPLATES

VIEW GOVERNOR BAKER’S PHASE II EXECUTIVE ORDER

 


(UPDATE) Update June 17, 2020 

City Announced $500,000 in Third Round of Prime the Pump Grant Program

Applications for the Third Round of Prime the Pump are due July 1, 2020 by 3:00 p.m. and must be submitted electronically to the attention of Anthony Moore at amoore@springfieldcityhall.com

Interested parties can download the application at the City of Springfield’s Planning and Economic Development website at: www.springfield-ma.gov/planning

Click on the links below to view the Guidelines and to download the application.

PTP ROUND 3 Guidelines

PTP ROUND 3 Application

 


(UPDATE)  June 15, 2020

Governor Baker Announces Pop Up COVID-19 Testing for June 17 and 18

The Commonwealth is urging anyone who has attended a large gathering in the past two weeks to get tested for COVID-19. This testing may be provided at no cost to you on June 17th and 18th.

More info: www.mass.gov/info-details/get-tested-for-covid-19-june-17th-and-18th.

Springfield Testing Locations

140 High St.           

380 Plainfield St.      

298 Carew St. 

Call 413-795-8378

 

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(UPDATE) June 8, 2020

Sector-Specific Protocols and Best Practices

Governor Baker has updated the sector-specific mandatory safety standards and recommended best practices to include restaurants and retail businesses as part of the Commonwealth's Phase II reopening plans. 

 


(UPDATE)  June 5, 2020

Mayor Sarno Moves to Facilitate and Energize Restaurants' / Businesses' Bottom Lines and Our Economy

Mayor Domenic J. Sarno and the City’s Licensing Department announced today that pursuant to Governor Baker’s Executive Order, applicable guidance from the Commonwealth and input from various municipal departments, the City of Springfield has issued guidance and applications for temporary extension of licensed premises to outdoor space.

As part of the Commonwealth’s and the City of Springfield’s Phase II reopening plan.  Restaurants and other establishments will now be able to seek a temporary extension of their license to provide outdoor table service.  

Applications for temporary modifications of Liquor Licenses do not need to be submitted to the State’s Alcoholic Beverages Control Commission (ABCC). Review and approval of a modified permit from the ABCC will be made at the local level and notification to the State will be made by the City of Springfield.


(UPDATE)  May 29, 2020

Mayor Sarno joined Congressman Neal and PVTA Administrator Sheehan for Announcement of $36 million in CARES Act Funding to PVTA

Mayor Domenic J. Sarno, today, joined with Congressman Richard E. Neal, and Pioneer Valley Transit Authority (PVTA) Administrator Sandra Sheehan for the announcement of $36,615,416 in Federal Transit Authority funding as a result of the CARES Act.

This funding will enable the PVTA to provide transit service during the COVID-19 public health emergency while also allowing the PVTA to respond to new transit operations needs post COVID-19. The grant is 100% federal funds with no local match required.  


 

(UPDATE) - May 22, 2020

RMV Implements Further Credential Extensions

The Massachusetts Registry of Motor Vehicles (RMV) has implemented further extensions to the renewal timelines for expiring motor vehicle inspection stickers, passenger plate registrations, professional credentials, and driver's licenses and learner's permits, including Commercial Driver’s Licenses and Commercial Permits (CDLs / CLPs).

While the RMV previously announced extensions for most credentials, passenger plate registrations, and inspection stickers expired or expiring in March, April, and May, an additional extension has been applied to those credentials, and an extension has been added to some credentials expiring in June, July, and August.


 

(UPDATE) - May 21, 2020: 

Mayor Sarno Announced Phased Reopening Plans for City of Springfield

Conduct City Business Remotely or Contact the Appropriate Department Directly to Schedule an Appointment

As part of the City of Springfield’s phased reopening plan, all municipal buildings and facilities will be reopening to the public, by appointment only, along with other restrictions, starting Wednesday, May 27, 2020.  

All municipal buildings will remain closed to walk-in traffic. 

Individuals will need to schedule an appointment with the appropriate city department they are looking to do their city related business with, as there will be a limit to the number of individuals inside city buildings and city offices.

Residents can schedule an appointment with the city department they need to conduct business with by calling either our 311 Call Center or by contacting that city department directly.  

Appointments must be made at least 24 hours in advance.

Click here for Contact Info by Department. 


(UPDATE) - May 18, 2020: 

Governor Baker Announces Four-Phased Plan for Reopening

The Baker-Polito Administration announced today the comprehensive plan to safely reopen the Massachusetts economy, get people back to work, and to ease social restrictions while minimizing the health impacts of COVID-19 (Coronavirus).

Governor Baker announced the states Four-Phased plan of reopening the Commonwealth.  The phases will be "Start", "Cautious", "Vigliant", and "the New Normal", respectively.  

Residents and Businesses are encouraged to visit the states "Reopening Massachusetts" website which provides additional information and guidance about the phased reopening and which industries and sectors are allowed to open and when at www.mass.gov/reopening

Click the link below to view the detailed guidance for specific industries and sectors on the opening plan, as issued by the Governor.

Reopening Massachusetts: Guidance for industries on the reopening plan - as of May 18, 2020

Click on the line below to view the detailed report on the reopening of Massachusetts, as issued by the Governor.

Reopening Massachusetts Report

 


(UPDATE) - May 11, 2020:

Governor Baker Announces Four-Phase Approach to Reopening Massachusetts & Publishes Workplace Safety Standards

On Monday, May 11, 2020, Governor Baker announced a four-phased approach to reopening the Massachusetts economy amidst the COVID-19 pandemic, and published Mandatory Workplace Safety Standards that will apply across all sectors and industries once reopening begins.

​​​​​The Massachusetts economy will be reopened using a four-phase approach, based on public health guidance. Businesses and activities with a lower risk of COVID-19 transmission will open in earlier phases. Public health metrics will determine when the first phase of reopening begins, as well as when it is safe to move into later phases. If public health metrics worsen, the state may need to return to an earlier phase.

  • Phase 1 will be “Start:” limited industries resume operations with severe restrictions
  • Phase 2 will be “Cautious:” additional industries resume operations with restrictions and capacity limits
  • Phase 3 will be “Vigilant:” additional industries resume operations with guidance
  • Phase 4 will be the “New Normal:” development of vaccine and/or therapy enables resumption of new normal

The Department of Public Health (DPH) and the COVID-19 Command Center developed new Mandatory Workplace Safety Standards in consultation with the Reopening Advisory Board. These new standards will apply universally to all workplaces that are open in Phase 1, and are designed to reduce the risk of COVID-19 transmission to employees and customers during the first phase of reopening, and are applicable to all sectors and industries. Read more on Work Place Safety Standards at mass.gov.

The Reopening Advisory Board is scheduled to provide its full report to Governor Baker on Monday, May 18th

 

Food Transportation - The Food Bank of Western Mass

The Food Bank of Western Mass has been authorized to give out LYFT codes " for people in Holyoke, Chicopee, or Springfield needing transportation to get food, the codes will give you a round trip to a grocery store, farm- stand or food pantry up to $10 each way. Codes can be obtained through May 16, 2020 by calling The Food Bank at 413-387-3849.


(UPDATE) - May 7, 2020:

Governor Baker Updates Essential Services Guidance

Governor Baker has updated the Essential Services Guidance to allow golf courses to reopen on Thursday, May 7, 2020, with strict guidelines and restrictions such as prohibiting golf carts, bunker rakes and caddies.

 

City of Springfield to Reopen Golf Courses

Following the Governor's update to the Commonwealths Essential Services Guidance of allowing golf courses to reopen but under strict guidelines and restrictions.  Mayor Domenic J. Sarno and Patrick Sullivan, Executive Director of Parks, Buildings and Recreation Management, announced today during the Mayor’s daily COVID-19 (Coronavirus) cabinet heads meeting that the City of Springfield will be reopening the municipal golf courses on Sunday, May 10, 2020.

 

(UPDATE) - May 5, 2020:

Governor Baker Updates Essential Services Guidance

Governor Baker updated the Essential Services Guidence easing restrictions on certain retail establishments for "remote fulfillment" and "no-contact" deliveries for many non-essential businesses including florist, bookstores, jewelers, etc.   

The new guidelines require these stores to remain closed to the public and limit operating hours to allow for sufficient off-hour cleaning. Employees must wear face coverings and stay at least six feet apart from one another, and all deliveries must be "no-contact" deliveries to consumers.

The guidelines also limit the number of employees that can work at a given time, starting with three in a business smaller than 10,000 square feet and growing to seven in a facility with more than 30,000 square feet.

Employers must also require workers to self-administer temperature checks before their shifts, and not report to work if they have a fever over 100 degrees.


 

(UPDATE) - May 1, 2020:

Governor Baker Issues Order Requiring Face Coverings to be worn in Public

Governor Charlie Baker issued an order requiring everyone in the Commonwealth to wear face coverings in public - including in businesses, outdoors, or on public transportation.  The order will go into effect on Wednesday.   

 


 

(UPDATE) - April 29, 2020:

Mayor Sarno and HHS Commissioner Caulton-Harris Announce Partnership with Mercy Medical to begin testing at the Springfield Rescue Mission 

Mayor Domenic J. Sarno and Health and Human Services (HHS) Commissioner Helen Caulton-Harris announced today that the City of Springfield in partnership with Mercy/Trinity Health will have all systems in place to continue testing of our vulnerable homeless population at the Springfield Rescue Mission’s Taylor Street site on Friday or Saturday and will begin to mobilize at the Rescue Mission’s Mill Street site by next week.

 


 

(UPDATE) - April 28, 2020: 

Mayor Sarno and HHS Commissioner Caulton-Harris Announce Homeless Testing to Start in Partnership with Baystate Health Systems

Mayor Domenic J. Sarno and Health and Human Services (HHS) Commissioner Helen Caulton-Harris announced today that the City of Springfield in partnership with Baystate Health will have all systems in place to begin testing of our vulnerable homeless population starting tomorrow at the city’s Worthington Street site.

Mayor Sarno stated, “I am very thankful to Commissioner Caulton-Harris for her continued yeoman efforts and to Dr. Mark Keroack, President and CEO of Baystate Health Systems, and his team for once again stepping up to the plate and delivering.  Additionally, working together, Baystate, with a providers note, will expand overall testing opportunities at their Carew and High Streets sites and per my request establish neighborhood-testing site by the end of this week at their Brightwood Health Center on Plainfield Street.  We are also working together on a stand up testing site at the Mason Square Health Center very shortly too.”

 

Springfield City Hall and All Municipal Buildings to Remain Closed to Public Until May 18, 2020 - Mayor Sarno to Review Plans for Eventual Reopening -

Following Governor Charlie Baker’s extension of the Commonwealths stay-at-home advisory and closing of all non-essential businesses order, City Hall and all municipal buildings will remain closed to the public until May 18, 2020.  The original date in which the state and local municipalities and non-essential businesses would have been able to reopen was May 4, 2020.    

Mayor Domenic J. Sarno also announced that he has directed his cabinet heads to begin reviewing plans and what measures that are going to be needed for the eventual reopening of City Hall and other municipal buildings.  Mayor Sarno has also directed his cabinet heads to begin reviewing the city’s plans for when the Governor’s non-essential business closing order expires.   

Mayor Sarno states, “Following Governor Baker’s extension and after meeting again with my cabinet heads, City Hall and all municipal buildings will remain closed to the public until May 18, 2020.  I have also directed by cabinet heads, who have been tested and true, to begin reviewing our plans for the eventual reopening of the city.  Though, like everyone else we’re chomping at the bit to reopen, we do not want to ‘jump the gun’ and reopen to soon, we must remain prudent and vigilant.  My city team will begin reviewing what measures and protocols are going to be needed to reopen in controlled phases - out of an abundance of caution.  We have to be smart on how we approach this.  We will continue to listen to all of the medical and health experts and professionals so that when we do begin to reopen in phases, we do so with the utmost confidence for our residents and business community.”          

Governor Baker announced back on March 15, 2020, Emergency Actions to help address and mitigate the potential spread of COVID-19.  The City of Springfield continues to follow and adhere to all of the public health and safety guidelines and measures as directed by the Governor’s Office, Massachusetts Department of Public Health (DPH), and the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).  

All City of Springfield employees continue to report to work as directed and under the discretion of their managers.  Departments will remain open in a modified aspect.  The City of Springfield will continue to maintain all essential functions and services.  Residents are encouraged to continue to conduct their city related business remotely when possible by utilizing our 311 Call Center at (413) 736-3111 and our website at www.springfield-ma.gov

 

Governor Charlie Baker Announced Massachusetts' "Stay at Home Advisory" and "Closure of Non-essential Businesses" Extended Until May 18th

This afternoon, Governor Baker announced that he is extending the state's emergency order closing non-essential businesses as well as the state's stay-at-home advisory until May 18th.  Governor Baker also announced the creation of a reopening advisory board. 



City of Springfield Awards 76 New Grants to City Small Businesses as Part of the Second Round of “Prime the Pump”
Mayor Domenic J. Sarno and Chief Development Officer Tim Sheehan announced today the awarding of 76 grants totaling $500,000 in the second round of the Prime the Pump program, assisting businesses in response to the economic crisis spurred from emergency closures due to Covid-19.

The City saw overwhelming interest in the grant program, with over $1.5 million in grant requests from 114 applications across the city, all submitted in just one week.

The Prime the Pump Program was initially announced on March 18, 2020.  With these awards, the city has now awarded 106 emergency grants to businesses in two rounds of Prime the Pump. The first round of the program awarded 30 grants to restaurants while the second round was open to businesses of all types. Between the two programs, the city has now awarded over $725,000 in grants to Springfield businesses. 

The tentative awards subject to contract execution are listed here


(UPDATE) - April 23, 2020:

City of Springfield’s Administration and Finance Division Recognized with Distinguished Budget Presentation Award
Mayor Domenic J. Sarno is proud to report that the city’s Administration and Finance Division, led by Chief Administrative and Financial Officer (CAFO) TJ Plante, has been recognized by the Government Finance Officers Association of the United States and Canada (GFOA) with the prestigious Distinguished Budget Presentation Award.  

Mayor Sarno and CAFO Plante are pleased to announce that the city’s FY19 budget submission was recognized by GFOA and awarded this honor.  This award is the highest form of recognition in governmental budgeting and represents a significant achievement for the City of Springfield.  This acknowledgement also marks the 12th year in a row in which the city has received this award.


UPDATE (April 21, 2020):

Mayor Sarno and HHS Commissioner Caulton-Harris Issue New Public Health Advisory to Essential Retail Establishments

On the heels of the major spike in the daily number of positive COVID-19 cases, Mayor Domenic J. Sarno and Health and Human Services (HHS) Commissioner Helen Caulton-Harris today issued a new Public Health Advisory to help mitigate the spread of COVID-19 (Coronavirus) and to continue to stress the importance of following social distancing  guidelines and public health and safety measures.

The City of Springfield is asking those stores that provide essential services (such as grocery stores, pharmacies, large box stores, convenience and retail stores, etc.) to partner with the city and require their patrons to wear face coverings.  

Springfield appreciates Big Y for already taking this proactive approach and the city strongly encourages and recommends that other essential retail establishments partners with the city for the good of all.  

The City’s Health and Human Services (HHS) Department continues to review and monitor the COVID-19 situation.  HHS staff continue to be proactive in the community by visiting sites across the city to assure that the public health emergency orders and recommendations issued by Governor Baker, the CDC and Mayor Sarno are being followed and adhered to. 

Mayor Sarno and HHS Commissioner Caulton-Harris Report Major Spike of 104 New Cases Today

Mayor Domenic J. Sarno and Health and Human Services (HHS) Commissioner Helen Caulton-Harris report a major spike of 104 new COVID-19 (Coronavirus) cases today, bringing the city’s total to nearly 1,000 cases (967).

Mayor Sarno and HHS Commissioner Caulton-Harris state that the city will continue to monitor the COVID-19 situation closely so that the city does not reopen and ease the prudent measures to early, which could potentially expose residents to a second wave of the virus. 


UPDATE (April 21, 2020):

Massachusetts Schools will Remain Closed this Academic Year

Governor Charlie Baker and the Massachusetts Department of Elementary and Secondary Education announced on April 21st that Massachusetts students will remain home for the rest of the school year to prevent the spread of COVID-19. Remote learning will continue. 

 


UPDATE (April 20, 2020): 

Governor Baker Signs Housing Bill Granting Moratorium on Evictions and Foreclosures

Governor Baker signed a housing security bill (H4647) which establishes a moratorium on evictions and foreclosures until after the coronavirus pandemic.  The moratorium will last for 120 days, or until 45 days after Governor Baker lifts the COVID-19 state of emergency. The bill does not absolve tenants or homeowners from paying their rents or mortgages, but does protect them from paying late penalties as long as they demonstrate that their inability to pay during the crisis is due to a hardship caused by the pandemic.

 

Governor Baker Announced Implementation of CARES Act Unemployment Benefits for Self-Employed and Other Workers

Governor Baker announced that residents who were not eligible for regular unemployment benefits can now apply online for the new Pandemic Unemployment Assistance (PUA) Program.  

The new federal PUA program provides up to 39 weeks of unemployment benefits who are unable to work because of a COVID-19-related reason but are not eligible for regular or extended unemployment benefits. This includes self-employed workers, independent contractors, gig economy workers, and those with limited work history. Applicants can learn more and apply at www.mass.gov/pua.

 


UPDATE (April 17, 2020):

Free Meals for All Kids - Not Just SPS Students

Meal service provided by Springfield Public Schools’ food service provider, Sodexo, is available to not only Springfield Public Schools students but to students from all schools in Springfield and from surrounding communities. 

“We’ve had a great number of inquiries from parents of students in surrounding cities and towns asking if they can take advantage of our free meal program during this closure and I want to be very clear that answer is a resounding yes,” said Superintendent of Springfield Public Schools Daniel Warwick. “Families from surrounding communities and Springfield families whose children do not attend Springfield Public Schools are more than welcome.” 

Free breakfast and lunch are available each weekday for all students, regardless of their city or town of residence or of the school they attend. The meals are grab-and-go and are available between 11 a.m. and 1 p.m. Monday – Friday at 17 locations throughout the City. Identification is not required when picking up a meal.


UPDATE (April 16, 2020):

Massachusetts Registry of Motor Vehicles Further Extends Deadlines

The Massachusetts RMV has implemented further extensions for expiring motor vehicle inspection stickers, passenger plate registrations, professional credentials, and licenses and permits, including Commercial Driver’s Licenses and Permits (CDLs / CLPs).

While 60-day extensions had already been implemented for most credentials, passenger plate registrations, and inspection stickers expired or expiring in March and April, this new action will apply the same 60-day extension to those expiring in May. Additionally, credentials expiring in March 2020 that previously were extended by 60 days will have an additional 60-day extension applied.

 


UPDATE (April 15, 2020):

MassMutual Offering $3 Billion in Free Life Insurance to Healthcare Workers on COVID-19 Frontline

Earlier today, MassMutual announced the launch of their HealthBridge Program, which will provide free term life insurance to the brave and resilient frontline healthcare workers across Massachusetts and Connecticut risking their lives during the COVID-19 pandemic.

This program  will offer our brave and dedicated healthcare providers a free 3-year term life insurance policy for employees of licensed hospitals, urgent care centers, or emergency medical services providers.

Mayor Sarno states, “Once again MassMutual is a well-respected national industry leader that never forgets its roots of providing during challenging times.  Thank you Roger Crandall and Team for once again stepping up, especially for all those frontline healthcare providers, who keep us safe and sound.”

Interested individuals can find more information on the MassMutual HealthBridge webpage at www.massmutual.com/cm/healthbridge.

 

Mayor Sarno Orders Hiring and Spending Freeze

Mayor Domenic J. Sarno announced that after consulting with CAFO TJ Plante, he has ordered the City of Springfield to implement a hiring and spending freeze due to the ongoing economic impact from the COVID-19 (coronavirus) pandemic.  This decision was based on a recent economic roundtable discussion with state officials and economists over concerns of the ongoing coronavirus situation and its impact upon projected federal, state and municipal revenue shortfalls.

 


UPDATE  (April 13, 2020):

Mayor Sarno Continues to Closey Monitor COVID-19 Situation

Mayor Sarno and his administration continue to monitor the COVID-19 situation closely so that we do not reopen and ease our prudent measures too early, which could potentially expose our residents to second wave of the virus. As other countries have experienced, lifting restrictions prematurely has led to a resurgence of the virus and a second-wave outbreak of infections. Mayor Sarno is senstive to this possibiity as he monitors and assesses the situtation.  

City of Springfield Activates COVID-19 Hotline

The city's Department of Health and Human Services activated its 24/7 hotline Monday April 13, 2020. Residents can call 413-750-3250 for questions related to COVID-19. The Department of Health and Human Services continues to track positive COVID-19 cases across the city. 

Governor Baker Signs An Act to Further Address Challenges Faced by Municipalities, School Districts and State Authorities Resulting from COVID-19

Massachusetts Comprehensive Assessment System (MCAS) testing requirements for the school year are suspended, the Department of Elementary and Secondary Education will modify or waive graduation requirements for students set to complete high school this summer, and due dates for district improvement plans will be pushed back under a bill Gov. Charlie Baker signed into law Friday.


UPDATE  (April 10, 2020):

Governor Baker Advises Massachusetts Residents to Wear Face Coverings 

Governor Charlie Baker announced today that the Massachusetts Department of Public Health will issue an advisory recommending that people wear face masks or other face coverings in public. The advisory is consistent with recommendations issued by the CDC. 

The City of Springfield's advisory regarding face coverings can be found here

City of Springfield Releases Round Two of Prime the Pump Business Grant Program

Mayor Domenic J. Sarno and Tim Sheehan, Chief Development Officer, today announced the release of Round Two of the “Prime the Pump” grant program, aimed at providing immediate financial relief for small businesses in Springfield. The goal of the program is to help preserve jobs and assist businesses through this difficult time and as the federal assistance through the Small Business Administration and other entities is being rolled out.  Grants in the Prime the Pump program will be awarded of up to $15,000 to eligible businesses. 

The Prime the Pump program has already awarded $222,000 in its first round, assisting 30 restaurants in preserving a minimum of 30 jobs throughout the city. Mayor Sarno authorized an additional $500,000 of CDBG carryover funding to allow for a second round to address more business needs in the city. 

Applications will only be accepted by email. Interested businesses seeking an application should email Anthony Moore in the Economic Development office at Amoore@springfieldcityhall.com or directly download an application from the City of Springfield’s COVID-19 Business Resources site on the Planning & Economic Development page of the city website.


UPDATE  (April 9, 2020):

City of Springfield Responds to Massachusetts Gaming Commission Vote on MGM Budget

In response to the Massachusetts Gaming Commission’s vote granting MGM Springfield and other casinos in the Commonwealth some relief from monetary assessments collected by the Gaming Commission, Mayor Domenic J. Sarno is asking MGM to continue to meet its full obligations under the Host Community Agreement.

MassHire to Hold Springfield Strong Online Job Expo

MassHire is holding a no cost online staff recruitment expo on April 28th, 29th & 30th. This event will be promoted through MassHire;s medoa partners 94.7WMAS, WEEI 105.5 and Nash Icon 98.1. Employers can advertise their openings on MassHire's dedicated web page with hyperlinks to job postings, company logo, company description and optional video embed.

Contact: 
JoAnn Miller, Director Business Services 
MassHire Springfield Career Center 
413-858-2851 
jmiller@masshirespringfield.org 


UPDATE (April 8, 2020):

City of Springfield to Adjust Deadline for Tax Relief Applications

Mayor Domenic J. Sarno has announced that following Governor Baker signing a Municipal Relief legislation (H4598: An Act to Address Challenges Faced by Municipalities and State Authorities Resulting from COVID-19), the City of Springfield will adjust the deadline for filing personal exemption and deferral applications to June 1, 2020.  The original statutory deadline was April 1, 2020. 

Previously, the City of Springfield had adjusted the collection dates for 4th quarter real estate and personal property taxes to June 1, 2020.  The original due date was May 1, 2020. 

The City of Springfield Assessor’s Office also encourages homeowners, renters and residents 65 years or older to consider applying for the Circuit Breaker Tax Credit as well. 

For more information and applications on these statutory abatement exemptions, please visit the city’s Board of Assessors website at www.springfield-ma.gov/finance/assessors or call the Assessor’s Office at (413) 787-6164.  Residents can also contact our city’s 311 Call Center at (413) 736-3111.  

Please see the attached FY20 Personal Exemption Chart. 

 

Mass. DPH Issued an Emergency Order Regarding Grocery Store Operations and Occupancy Limits

On April 7, the Massachusetts Commissioner of Public Health issued additional guidance for grocery stores and local boards of health related to the March 25, 2020 Order of the Commissioner regarding grocery stores. 

 

Governor Baker's Updated COVID-19 Essential Services FAQs

This list of FAQs provided by the Governor's Office addresses many of the submissions received by EOHED relating to  “COVID-19 Essential Services” guidance associated with Governor Baker’s March 23, 2020 Emergency Order (which was updated and extended on March 31, 2020).

 


UPDATE (April 3, 2020):

City of Springfield to Adjust Collection Date for 4th Quarter Real Estate Property Taxes

Mayor Domenic J. Sarno has announced that following Governor Baker signing a Municipal Relief legislation (H4598: An Act to Address Challenges Faced by Municipalities and State Authorities Resulting from COVID-19), the City of Springfield will adjust the collection date for 4th quarter real estate taxes to June 1, 2020, instead of the original due date of May 1, 2020. 

The due date for the collection of real estate taxes is a state statue and any changes required approval by the state Legislature and the Governor.



Springfield Awards 30 Grants to City Restaurants as Part of the “Prime the Pump” Grant Program

Mayor Domenic J. Sarno and Chief Development Officer Tim Sheehan announced today that 30 grants totaling over $225,000 for restaurants have been awarded as part of the city’s ‘Prime the Pump’ Grant Program in response to the economic crisis resulting from emergency closures due to Covid-19.  

The Prime the Pump Program was announced on March 18, 2020.  The priority focus being on full service restaurants that needed to begin or expand their takeout and delivery operations to comply with the public health emergency orders and all the restaurants that continued to remain open and keep some of their workers employed.  Applications for the available grant funding became available on March 21, 2020 with a filing deadline of March 24, 2020.

The City saw overwhelming interest in the grant program, with over $1 million in grant requests from 80 applications across the city. Those restaurants that were not awarded or did not receive their full funding request are eligible to apply in the upcoming Small Business Grant Fund for up to a total amount between both funds of $15,000.  The Small Business Grant Fund Application is anticipated to be released in the next few days.  

View the list of tentative awards subject to contract execution here

Mayor Sarno and Health Commissioner Caulton-Harris Issue New Public Health Advisory and Recommendation

In response to the ongoing and growing concerns of the spread of COVID-19 (Coronavirus) and out of an abundance of caution, Mayor Sarno and Health Commissioner Caulton-Harris are issuing a new joint public health advisory and recommendation for our residents.  

The City of Springfield is asking residents to wear face coverings when out in public, especially in locations where people are in transit such as but not limited to; grocery and convenient stores, bus and train stations, pharmacies and medical facilities, pet supply stores, and hardware shops or if they otherwise leave their home to participate in an exempt activity.

Read advisory.

 


UPDATE (April 2, 2020):

Springfield City Council and School Committee Schedule Virtual Meetings 

The Springfield City Council and School Committee have schedule virtual meetings.  The City Council will hold their regular meeting virtually on Monday, April 6, 2020.  The School Committee will hold their Budget and Finance Subcommittee meeting on Wednesday, April 8, 2020 and the meeting of the full School Committee will take place on Thursday, April 9, 2020. 

 

Congressman Richard E. Neal Announces the signing of the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act.

Congressman Richard E. Neal announced that the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act, was signed into law on Friday, March 27, 2020. The CARES Act, in part, provides for an additional $5 for the Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) program on which Springfield is set to receive $2,301,793 of CDBG funds.  

Grantees may use CDBG funds for a range of eligible activities that prevent and respond to the spread of infectious diseases such as the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19), such as: 

Buildings and Improvements, Including Public Facilities:

  • Construct a facility for testing, diagnosis, or treatment.          
  • Rehabilitate a community facility to establish an infectious disease treatment clinic.
  • Acquire and rehabilitate, or construct, a group living facility that may be used to centralize patients undergoing treatment.
  • Rehabilitate a commercial building or closed school building to establish an infectious disease treatment clinic, e.g., by replacing the HVAC system.
  • Acquire, and quickly rehabilitate (if necessary) a motel or hotel building to expand capacity of hospitals to accommodate isolation of patients during recovery.
  • Make interim improvements to private properties to enable an individual patient to remain quarantined on a temporary basis.

Assistance to Businesses, including Special Economic Development Assistance

  • Provide grants or loans to support new businesses or business expansion to create jobs and manufacture medical supplies necessary to respond to infectious disease.
  • Avoid job loss caused by business closures related to social distancing by providing short-term working capital assistance to small businesses to enable retention of jobs held by low- and moderate-income persons.
  • Provide technical assistance, grants, loans, and other financial assistance to establish, stabilize, and expand microenterprises that provide medical, food delivery, cleaning, and other services to support home health and quarantine.

Public Services:

  • Carry out job training to expand the pool of health care workers and technicians that are available to treat disease within a community.
  • Provide testing, diagnosis or other services at a fixed or mobile location.
  • Increase the capacity and availability of targeted health services for infectious disease response within existing health facilities.
  • Provide equipment, supplies, and materials necessary to carry-out a public service.
  • Deliver meals on wheels to quarantined individuals or individuals that need to maintain social distancing due to medical vulnerabilities.

The funds may also be used for planning, capacity-building, and technical assistance in the furtherance of these goals.

 

Massachusetts Registry of Motor Vehicles Extends the Renewal Deadline for Motor Vehicle Registration

Effective April 1, 2020, all passenger and dealer plate registrations that expired in March and passenger plates that are expiring in April have been extended for 60 days. Registrations that expired in March have been extended until May 31 and registrations that expire in April have been extended until June 30. Registration renewals can continue to be performed online at Mass.Gov/RMV.

 


UPDATE (April 1, 2020):

Springfield Public Schools Add Additional Meal Site and Make Other Announcements

The Springfield Public Schools have announced the addition of Sumner Ave to the Meals Program.  This brings the total number of locations up to 17.

Other announcements include, the School Department initiating plans to include dinner to the Meal Program and to begin the distribution of laptops to students.

 


UPDATE (March 31, 2020):

Governor Baker Extends Order for Non-Essential Businesses to Remain Closed Until May 4, 2020.

In accordance with Governor Baker’s extension of his March 23, 2020 order, all businesses and organizations that do not provide “COVID-19 Essential Services” must continue to keep their physical workplaces and facilities closed to workers, customers and the public until May 4, 2020.

Governor Baker also extended his stay-at-home advisory until May 4, 2020.

 


UPDATE (March 30, 2020):

Springfield Public Schools Begin Initiative to Distribute Laptops to Students

Springfield Public Schools is set to begin an initiative to put as many as 10,000 laptops in the hands of K-12 students who do not have access to a computer while they are at home. The laptop distribution initiative began today with a three-day registration period for families requesting a laptop.

The initiative builds on the district’s Technology Plan. Implemented six years ago, the initiative provided a laptop for every Springfield Public School student in grades 3 through 12.  The program provided a computer for every two students in grades kindergarten through second. In recent years, the district piloted a program that allowed students at the pilot schools to bring the laptops home at night, rather than leave them at school.

“Clearly, we were moving at a measured pace in the direction of providing a take-home laptop for every student, the coronavirus pandemic has forced us to quicken that pace exponentially,” said Superintendent of Schools Daniel Warwick. “As we engage in remote learning, it is important for us to make sure every student has access to the same resources.”

The initiative will allow families with students who need a laptop to either pick it up via drive-through at the student’s school or those without transportation can arrange for home delivery. Both alternatives will be scheduled.  The Springfield Public Schools Information Technology Department, along with paraprofessionals, teachers, and Central Office staff who have volunteered to assist in the effort, will disinfect each laptop and help with distribution. The distribution process will follow appropriate social distancing guidelines to protect the health of staff, students and families.

Laptops are currently expected to be ready for scheduled pick-up or delivery beginning on April 6, 2020. Schools will reach out directly to families who register for a laptop to inform them of the distribution schedule.

 

Mayor Sarno and Police Commissioner Clapprood Announce Partnership with MA State Police

Mayor Domenic J. Sarno and Police Commissioner Cheryl Clapprood announced that the State Police will partner with the City of Springfield’s Police Department by deploying 9 state troopers to the city to complement the police department’s patrols and operations while awaiting the National Guard. The troopers will be assigned 3 per shift.

 

Mayor Sarno gave his Weekly COVID-19 Situational Update

Mayor Domenic J. Sarno and his Cabinet Heads continue to provide weekly updates to our residents and business community the City of Springfield's COVID-19 (coronavirus) situational updates.  Also in attendance was Baystate Health President and CEO Dr. Mark Keroack, and Mercy Medical Chief Medical Officer and Regional Chief, Addiction Medicine and Recovery Services Dr. Robert Roose

 

City of Springfield Closes and Prohibits All Active Recreational Activities

The City of Springfield' Parks Department, out of an abundance of caution, has closed and are prohibiting all active recreational activities which include but limited to: Golf Cources, Basketball (hoops are down), Tennis (courts are locked), Playgrounds (tapped off), and Farmers Markets.

 


UPDATE (March 27, 2020):

Baker-Polito Administration Announces Travel Guidelines To Support COVID-19 Response 
Beginning March 27, all travelers arriving to Massachusetts are instructed to self-quarantine for 14 days. This guidance will be displayed as posters at service plazas along 1-90 eastbound, distributed as flyers at major transportation hubs and on posted on highway message boards. Visitors are instructed not to travel to Massachusetts if they are displaying symptoms. Health care workers, public health workers, public safety workers, transportation workers and designated essential workers are exempt from this requirement.

www.mass.gov/news/baker-polito-administration-announces-travel-guidelines-and-new-health-care-resources-to.

Springfield City Library Announced Services Available

The Springfield City Library has prepared a list of services they are offering to patrons while library buildings are closed to the public. Visit the Springfield City Library website for more information: https://www.springfieldlibrary.org/library/. 

MassDOT-Registry of Motor Vehicles No-Walk-in Policy

Effective today, Friday, March 27th, the RMV will enforce a strict no walk-in policy at its eight open Service Centers. The only transactions processed at service centers will be those that require an in-person transaction, including Commercial Driving Licenses/Permits, some new registrations, out of state conversions and new Mass IDs. These customers will be required to make an online appointment reservation.

https://www.mass.gov/info-details/rmv-covid-19-information

https://www.mass.gov/orgs/massachusetts-registry-of-motor-vehicles?fbclid=IwAR2SJa4p-aOpJBYc3BhAltlRPKCJYt3sTdUyYyWcZRyzDFdh3qwYiPx-L_s.

 

City of Springfield Announces Contingency Plan for City’s Homeless Population

Mayor Domenic J. Sarno joined with members of his administration today to announce the City's Contingency Plan for the Springfield Homeless Population. Under the plan, there will be three tents available for individuals who are homeless to access on Worthington St. One tent is reserved for Testing, one for those with Symptoms to isolate, and the third for those in Quarantine.

 

Mayor Sarno Signs on to Letter Asking the President and Federal Government to Coordinate Efforts for the Purchasing and Distribution of Medical Equipment

Mayor Domenic J. Sarno today signed onto a letter from the Massachusetts Public Interest Research Group asking President Trump and the Federal Government to support our hospitals and healthcare facilities, and our cities, towns and states by using their federal power and authority to ramp up production of ventilators, PPE’s such as the N95 masks, testing kits and quicker turnaround for results, and other much-needed medical equipment.  

Mayor Sarno stated, “This public health emergency situation has affected all of us across the nation.  The needs of our cities, states, hospitals and other healthcare facilities to proactively respond to help mitigate the spread of COVID-19 has put stress upon our first responders and front line personnel.  It has pushed our resources to their limits.  Now more than ever, we need a coordinated effort on a national scale to meet the ever growing demands of the purchasing and distribution of medical equipment.”

 

Massachusetts Announces State Income Tax Filing Deadline Being Extended to July 15 

Governor Charlie Baker, Lt. Governor Karyn Polito, Senate President Karen Spilka and House Speaker Robert DeLeo today announced an agreement to extend the 2019 state individual income tax filing and payment deadline from April 15 to July 15 due to the ongoing COVID-19 outbreak. This income tax relief is automatic and taxpayers do not need to file any additional forms to qualify.

Individuals with questions or concerns regarding taxes can contact the Massachusetts Department of Revenue at (617) 887-6367 or send a secure e-message through MassTaxConnect.

 

Mayor Sarno Petitions HUD for Additional CDBG Funds for Small Business Assistance

Mayor Domenic J. Sarno and Chief Development Officer Tim Sheehan today sent a letter to David Tille, Regional Administrator for HUD, seeking flexibility to redeploy potentially $500,000 additional CDBG funding for the “Prime the Pump” restaurant grant program and to assist small businesses with a direct grant initiative.  

Previously the City had announced and released the “Prime the Pump” grant application, aimed at providing immediate financial relief for restaurants in Springfield that have transitioned to take out service models. The goal of the program is to help preserve jobs and assist restaurant businesses through this difficult time. 

Following up on this grant program, the city is seeking to utilize this additional CDBG funding from HUD for additional relief for our restaurants and other small businesses.

Mayor Sarno states, “It’s critical that we do what we can to help support our small businesses during these difficult times.  I have directed my Chief Development Officer Tim Sheehan to follow up with HUD Regional Administrator David Tille on this matter and to prepare program guidelines for as early as next week so that we can get this much-needed assistance out to our small businesses.  I want to thank Congressman Richard Neal for his continued leadership and for reaching out to HUD Secretary Ben Carson in support of our letter.”    

 

Mayor Sarno Announces Request for Massachusetts National Guard

Mayor Sarno announced today, out of an abundance of caution and to continue to be proactive in addressing any potential needs that might arise due to the public health emergency situation of COVID-19.  That he has contacted the Office of Governor Baker and MEMA to request the Massachusetts National Guard to be deployed in the City of Springfield under the command of Police Commission Cheryl Clapprood.

The Mayor has requested for 75 members of the Massachusetts National Guards to be deployed to help augment and supplement our local police and city operations.  

“Though our dedicated men and women in blue are currently fully staffed and out on the front lines providing our residents and business community with the public safety operations they need.  The reality of the situation is this COVID-19 situation will eventually begin to take its toll on our first responders and front line personnel.”  Mayor Sarno said.  “From the daily morning reports Police Commissioner Clapprood has provided me, we are already down 20 officers and are awaiting their test results to determine if they can end their self-quarantine and return back to duty.  Commissioner Clapprood and I realize that this number can and will increase so we have to be proactive in our strategies to continue to keep our residents and business community safe and sound.” 

Mayor Sarno added, “I take this action as a precautionary measure as we continue to plan ahead and stay proactive during this COVID-19 situation.  The addition of these 75 members from the Massachusetts National Guard will help to augment and supplement our local police and other city operations as needed under the direct command of Commissioner Clapprood.”


UPDATE (March 26, 2020):

City Hall and All Municipal Buildings to Remain Closed to the Public until May 4, 2020

Mayor Domenic J. Sarno has announced that out of an abundance of caution due to the current public health emergency and the evolving concerns related to the spread of COVID-19 (Coronavirus), the City of Springfield will extend the period in which City Hall and all municipal buildings will remain closed to the public until Monday, May 4, 2020.

Governor Baker announced on Wednesday, March 25, 2020, that his administration was taking new actions in support of the state’s ongoing COVID-19 response to mitigate the spread of the virus, by extending the closure order of all schools across the Commonwealth until May 4, 2020.

 


UPDATE (March 25, 2020):

City of Springfield's COVID-19 (Coronavirus) Situational Update 

All city services continue to operate and serve the public’s needs. Imperative City services go beyond public safety and health care. Birth and death certificates still need to be issued, municipal lien certificates still need to be produced in order for house closings, payroll and benefits still need to be administered for City employees, IT services need to be available to assist employees working remotely.

Those things considered, all city employees continue to provide essential city services under modified schedules, which include working remotely, alternating days working on site, or any combination, which has been determined as appropriate by the department head where services can continue with minimum interruptions.

 


UPDATE (March 24, 2020):

City of Springfield Office of Planning & Economic Development Resources

The City of Springfield’s Office of Planning & Economic Development will continue to update their dedicated COVID-19 Business Resources page with information, resources, and guidance for businesses here.

 


UPDATE (March 23, 2020):

Governor Baker Issues Order for Non-Essential Services and Workplaces to Shutdown and Advisory on Non-essential Travel

Governor Baker issued an emergency order requiring all businesses and organizations that do not provide “COVID-19 Essential Services” to close their physical workplaces and facilities to workers, customers and the public as of Tuesday, March 24th at noon until Tuesday, April 7th at noon. These businesses are encouraged to continue operations remotely.

The Order also prohibits the gatherings of more than 10 people.

The Governor also issued an Advisory asking people to avoid any non-essential traveling and stay at home.

Click here for the full list of categories of “COVID-19 Essential Services”

Click here for a copy of the Emergency Order

Click here for a copy of the Guidance of Assemblages

 


UPDATE (March 19, 2020):

City of Springfield Issues New Public Health Emergency Recommendations

Following up on Governor Baker’s order to close all daycares and childcare centers across the Commonwealth, Mayor Domenic J. Sarno, upon the recommendation of Health Commissioner Helen Caulton-Harris, is strongly encouraging other venues to voluntarily adhere to and follow these Public Health Emergency recommendations by taking precautionary measures needed.

Due to the ongoing coronavirus (COVID-19) situation, the city is reminding everyone to adhere to the social distancing recommendations and asking that certain venues take the precautionary measures needed during these public health emergency times by voluntarily discontinuing services.  The city is asking that barber shops, salons, hairdressers, tattoo and piercing studios, massage parlors and spas, and nail salons all take the precautionary measures during these public health emergency times and voluntarily discontinue services as to adhere to the social distancing guidelines of remaining at least six (6) feet apart. 

We must continue to strike a balance between serious health concerns and the nature of doing business. The City of Springfield must do our very best to stay ahead of this growing concern to help reduce the spread of the coronavirus.  

The City of Springfield will continue to monitor the COVID-19 (Novel Coronavirus) situation.  The city is committed to keeping our residents and business community informed about the latest developments.  To stay up-to-date on all the latest information we encourage everyone to visit the City’s website at www.springfield-ma.gov.

The City of Springfield has a dedicated Coronavirus (COVID-19) Update webpage that is continually updated with new information and developments from our health experts, the city, the state, federal government and other important agencies and organizations.  


UPDATE (March 18, 2020): 

City of Springfield's Planning and Economic Development Office - Restaurant Grant Program

The City of Springfield has launched a grant program aimed to assist our local restaurants during these challenging times by making available, funds to help restaurant businesses that seek to reorganize their service delivery operations to meet the public health restrictions and retain their existing employees to degree possible.  Qualifying restaurants can apply for up to $15,000 to help with these expenses. 

For more information and details on how to apply, please contact the city’s Chief Development Officer Timothy Sheehan at (413) 787-6024 or tsheehan@springfieldcityhall.com

 

Western Mass Economic Development Council has provided a dedicated site listing available resources from both the state and community partners.

https://www.westernmassedc.com/about-us/covid-19-resources/

 

U.S. Small Business Administration Disaster Assistance to Small Businesses

TheU.S. Small Business Administration is offeringlow-interestfederal disaster loans for working capital for small businesses suffering substantial economic injury as a result of the Coronavirus (COVID-19).  Hampden County has been identified as an eligible region.   

Eligibility for Economic Injury Disaster Loans is based on the financial impact of the Coronavirus (COVID-19). The interest rate is 3.75 percent for small businesses. The interest rate for private non-profit organizations is 2.75 percent. SBA offers loans with long-term repayments in order to keep payments affordable, up to a maximum of 30 years and are available to entities without the financial ability to offset the adverse impact without hardship.

Applicants may apply online, receive additional disaster assistance information and download applications at https://disasterloan.sba.gov/ela. Applicants may also call SBA’s Customer Service Center at (800) 659-2955 or email disastercustomerservice@sba.gov for more information on SBA disaster assistance. Individuals who are deaf or hard‑of‑hearing may call (800) 877-8339. Completed applications should be mailed to U.S. Small Business Administration, Processing and Disbursement Center, 14925 Kingsport Road, Fort Worth, TX  76155.

The deadline to apply for an Economic Injury Disaster Loan is Dec. 16, 2020.

For more information about Coronavirus, please visit: Coronavirus.gov.

For more information about available SBA resources and services, please visit: SBA.gov/coronavirus.

 


UPDATE (March 17, 2020): Governor Baker Announces Small Business Recovery Loan Fund

The Baker-Polito Administration announced economic support for small businesses with a $10 million loan fund to provide financial relief to those that have been affected by COVID-19.

The $10 million Small Business Recovery Loan Fund will provide emergency capital up to $75,000 to Massachusetts-based businesses impacted by COVID-19 with under 50 full- and part-time employees, including nonprofits. Loans are immediately available to eligible businesses with no payments due for the first 6 months. Massachusetts Growth Capital Corporation (MGCC) has capitalized the fund and will administer it.

How to Apply:

Please complete the application found on MGCC’s website, EmpoweringSmallBusiness.org

Completed applications can be sent via email to mgcc@massgcc.com with the subject line “2020 Small Business Recovery Loan Fund”.

MGCC can be reached by email: mgcc@massgcc.com

Loan Fund Details:

  • Who Qualifies: Open to Massachusetts-based businesses impacted by COVID-19 with under 50 full- and part-time employees, including nonprofits (negative impact must be verifiable).
  • Terms and Conditions: This fund is being offered with no payments due for the first 6 months, then 30-months of principal and interest payments and no prepayment penalties.
  • Businesses can apply for loans up to $75,000.

 


UPDATE (March 16, 2020):  City Hall and All Municipal Buildings to Close to Public

Due to the evolving concerns related to the spread of COVID-19 – Coronavirus and out of an abundance of caution, the City of Springfield has announced that it will be closing City Hall and all other municipal buildings to the public beginning Tuesday, March 17, 2020 until April 5, 2020. 

Governor Baker announced Sunday evening, March 15, 2020, Emergency Actions to help address the potential spread of COVID-19.  As such, the City of Springfield will adhere to these actions by strictly following the public health recommendations of social distancing guidelines and limiting public gatherings to 25 people or less. 

At this time, all City of Springfield employees will continue to report to work as directed and under the discretion of their managers.  Departments will remain open in a modified aspect.

The City of Springfield will continue to maintain all essential functions and services.  Residents are encouraged to conduct their city related business remotely when possible by utilizing our 311 Call Center at (413) 736-3111 and our website at www.springfield-ma.gov.  Individuals encountering urgent, time-sensitive situations requiring the attention of City of Springfield staff are advised to contact the appropriate department to determine if an accommodation can be made.

 


UPDATE (March 13, 2020): City of Springfield Declares State of Emergency

Mayor Domenic J. Sarno today declared a state of emergency in the City of Springfield to mitigate any potential spread of the coronavirus (COVID-19).  As a result the following actions have been taken by the city:  

  • Springfield Public Schools are temporarily closed
  • Springfield Senior Centers are temporarily closed
  • Springfield Public Libraries are temporarily closed
  • Large assemblies over 250 people or more are temporarliy canceled

 


UPDATE (March 11, 2020):  Springfield Public Schools update and FAQ's  

https://www.springfieldpublicschools.com/news/News/coronavirus_update

 


 

UPDATE (March 10, 2020):  Baystate Health has established a dedicated web page to provide accurate and timely information and recommendations regarding COVID-19

baystatehealth.org/covid19

 


 

UPDATE (March 4, 2020):  Per the Massachusetts Department of Public Health - Revised CDC guidance regarding returning travelers from Level 2 and 3 countries

The US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) announced revised guidance regarding travelers to Level 2 and 3 countries returning to the US and recommended procedures for reducing the risk of transmission of the virus associated with COVID-19). The CDC link is also here: https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/travelers (click on the travel notice beside each country).

Change in guidance for returnees from Level 2 and 3 countries:

  • Returning travelers from Level 3 countries other than China and Iran (currently Italy and South Korea) are asked to self-quarantine (“stay home") for 14 days since the date of entry to the United States and self-monitor for symptoms consistent with COVID-19.  CDC’s Division of Global Migration and Quarantine (DGMQ) will NOT be providing traveler information on returnees from these countries to states.  DPH will NOT be asking local health departments to educate these travelers on self-quarantine nor actively monitor these individuals during their 14-day quarantine period.
  • Returning travelers from Level 2 countries (currently Japan) are asked to limit contact with others and self-monitor for symptoms.  DGMQ will NOT be providing traveler information on returnees from level 2 countries to states.  DPH will NOT be asking local health departments to educate these travelers on self-monitoring.

Reminder of guidance already in place:

Foreign nationals may not travel from China or Iran to the United States. US residents returning from these countries will continue to be identified for state health departments by DGMQ and DPH will continue to request local health department assistance in monitoring these returnees and supporting them to self-quarantine for 14 days.

CDC recommends everyone avoid all non-essential travel to Level 3 countries (currently China, Iran, Italy, and South Korea) and that older individuals and those with chronic health conditions avoid non-essential travel to Level 2 countries (currently Japan).

Travelers with questions should call the 24/7 Epi Line: 617-983-6800.  DPH will be conducting weekly conference calls with local boards of health starting next week.  Call information will be forthcoming. 

The Department will share further guidance as it becomes available.


 

The City of Springfield encourages you to check out the following information from the State of Massachusetts and the CDC:

 

The new MDPH website provides relevant up-to-date information on the state of the novel coronavirus for all residents: mass.gov/2019coronavirus.

Additional details and guidance regarding the novel coronavirus, is available from the CDC: 2019 Novel Coronavirus.

Fact Sheets from the Massachusetts Department of Public Health can be found here.

 

Springfield Department of Health and Human Services  is working closely with the Massachusetts Department of Public Health (MDPH) and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

Page last updated:  Monday, November 30, 2020 04:53 pm