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Montana Governor Steve Bullock has issued a Directive for a phased re-opening of Montana. Montana is one of a few states where the rate of new cases appears to be flat or declining in the last two weeks. Governor Bullock also stated that Montana now has the ability to test anyone showing COVID-19 symptoms, trace contacts of known cases, and treat all people seeking health care.

Phase One starts Sunday, April 26th. Groups of 10 or fewer who keep six feet apart may gather. Churches can reopen as long as they can maintain six feet between family groups. Monday, April 27th, allows retail businesses to open if they can conduct worker health assessments at the start of shifts and who reduce contact between customers and staff.

On May 4th, dine-in restaurants and bars can re-open. They’ll be required to operate at half capacity, close by 11:30 p.m. and have plans to spread patrons apart.

Local school boards can individually decide whether to allow students to return to classrooms after May 7, or continue remote learning.

A 14-day quarantine for out-of-state visitors remains in effect, with an exemption for those visiting for work.