(HARTFORD, CT) – Governor Ned Lamont today announced that he has signed an executive order increasing the amount that businesses can be fined for violations of the state’s COVID-19 sector rules and capacity limits to $10,000 per violation. The governor said he is taking this action – which goes into effect at 12:01 a.m. on Thursday, November 26 – as the result of feedback he has received from municipal leaders, public health officials, and people from within the business community. The most recently authorized amount was a $500 fine.
“The sector rules and capacity limits we’ve implemented are intended to mitigate the spread of this disease to the greatest extent possible,” Governor Lamont said. “While the overwhelming majority of businesses in Connecticut have shown an incredible amount of leadership and have been fantastic partners in this front, we have seen a small number of businesses in flagrant violation of these public health rules, and that’s all you need to cause a super-spreading event that leads to a large number of cases and hospitalizations.
“Increasing compliance with the protocols we’ve already enacted is an important responsibility in keeping our communities safe. We want to do everything we can to mitigate the further spread of this virus while avoiding the implementation of more restrictions or lockdowns on our already hard-hit economy and small businesses.”
Fines for violations can be issued by local health directors or municipal designees, with the support of law enforcement. Other fines that remain in effect for violations of the state’s COVID-19 rules include $500 for organizing an event over capacity limits, $250 for attending events over capacity limits, $100 for failure to wear a face mask or covering when in public, and up to $500 for violations of the state’s travel advisory.
The gathering sizes and capacity limitations that are exempt from this order, which include private gatherings at private residences, religious and spiritual gatherings, and graduations, shall continue to be subject to infractions for violations of sector rules and other COVID-related orders.
“Particularly as we approach Black Friday and the start of the holiday shopping season, we want to stress the importance of following public health protocols to protect both customers and workers,” Governor Lamont said. “Working together, we can get the spread of COVID-19 under control while mitigating the impact that it is having on our economy.”