In a virtual press conference this morning, Indianapolis Mayor Joe Hogsett provided an update to the city’s COVID-19 restrictions following Governor Eric Holcomb’s updates earlier this week. Hogsett said the mask mandate and capacity restrictions in Marion County will continue beyond April 6 until the current public health order is rescinded or superseded.
“The threat of an uptick is not yet behind us,” said Hogsett. “This month, we are hosting thousands of visitors, from inside and outside our state. Soon travel and economic activity will increase to even greater degrees. And while I believe that we can continue to handle these changing patterns quickly, we can only do so with the common sense approach that attracted the NCAA tournament to Indianapolis in the first place.”
Dr. Virginia Caine, the Marion County Public Health Department director, said the county’s ability to reach herd immunity will be a major factor in ending the mandate. She said she’s expecting herd immunity to be reached in the county this summer.
Holcomb this week announced the statewide COVID-19 restrictions will remain in place through April 5, after which local officials will be able to make decisions on their own restrictions. He also announced the statewide mask mandate would become a “mask advisory” at that time, and everyone age 16 and older will be eligible to receive a COVID-19 vaccination, beginning March 31.
“I’m sensitive to the fact that the governor and his decision making has to take into consideration 92 counties,” said Hogsett. “I am grateful that he is allowing Dr. Virginia Caine and other leaders here in Marion County…to keep the risks that are unique to Marion County at the forefront of our decision making.”