Montgomery County to announce reopening plans on Thursday

On Thursday, Montgomery County Executive Marc Elrich and other county officials will hold a news conference to announce plans for reopening the county. 

Officials say the news conference will take place at 2:30 p.m. in Gaithersburg. You can watch it live on FOX 5 and in the app tomorrow! 


Elrich will be joined by County Council President Sidney Katz, County Health Officer Dr. Travis Gayles, and Director of the County’s Office of Emergency Management and Homeland Security Dr. Earl Stoddard to discuss the next steps in the county's response to the COVID-19 pandemic, according to a news release.


ANNAPOLIS, Md. (FOX 5 DC) -- Montgomery County Executive Marc Elrich is refusing to announce any reopening dates. This happened Wednesday just after his own health officer said metrics were “moving in the right direction” and “showing significant progress."

FOX 5's Tom Fitzgerald reports the county executive was on the defensive today. Elrich previously said Montgomery County would mirror its neighbors, Prince George’s County and D.C., but both have announced reopening dates.

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On Monday, Elrich said he was “hung out to dry” by Maryland Governor Larry Hogan who let local officials throughout the state delay reopening.

FOX 5's Tom Fitzgerald asked Elrich on Wednesday how that is possible when he had asked for counties like Montgomery County to "opt-out."

"If you don’t validate the difference between Montgomery County, Prince George’s County, and the other counties that are being hammered by this as opposed to counties that have no deaths or one death, and have a different magnitude of problem – if you don’t separate us out, then we get bombarded pretty much like we have," said Elrich.

Elrich wasn’t the only one — executives from Frederick, Prince George’s, Howard, and Baltimore counties, including  Baltimore City, joined Montgomery in writing Hogan last week. The letter requested the governor clear up confusion over why he moved to phase one re-opening, while their jurisdictions decided to stay closed.

The governor responded today.  

"We've been working very well, I think, with our local leaders, and our plan, which we rolled out a while ago now, called for flexibility in working with the various counties and knowing that different counties were at separate points and being affected differently," said Hogan.

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Elrich did acknowledge Montgomery's metric trends on new cases, hospitalizations, ICU beds, and fatalities are showing progress. He said that puts Montgomery County on track for reopening in "one or two weeks," but he’d said that a week ago.

When pressed today, he added he may have something to say on Friday, but was making no promises.