Governor has no problem with Boston’s later reopening

Boston Statehouse

BOSTON (SHNS) – Boston officials plan to run roughly three weeks behind the state’s reopening schedule, and that’s no concern for Gov. Charlie Baker.

While defending his administration’s target of Aug. 1 for fully lifting restrictions on businesses, Baker said he feels comfortable with municipalities setting their own, longer timelines. Acting Mayor Kim Janey announced Tuesday that the city would wait about three weeks after the state to loosen regulations in the summer.

“One of the things we’ve also said from the beginning on this is we’re going to create what I would call kind of a statewide framework and then if locals want to move within that framework, they can,” Baker said Thursday. “In the city of Boston, for example, Mayor Janey said she was going to run about three weeks behind our proposal. We’ve had moments and circumstances like that all the way through this, and I don’t have a problem with that. Locals in many cases know better than anybody else about what the particular play in their community might be.”

Asked Thursday if he was concerned that New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio is planning a full reopening by July 1, Baker replied that he only wants to reopen “in a way that doesn’t create negativity on the other end.”

“If people continue to get vaccinated in Massachusetts, if people continue to do the right things, if people continue to do the work that we all know will reduce case counts, reduce hospitalizations, and make this commonwealth a safer, better place, we’ll take a look at where we are and make a decision as we go about whether we can move that date up,” Baker said. “Our sense was, when we looked at how many people were getting vaccinated and who was left and all the rest, we felt we were sure about being in a good pace by Aug. 1, but if the people in Massachusetts continue to be as aggressive and as enthusiastic about getting vaccinated as they’ve been, we may have the ability to do that sooner.” 

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