We had some good news this week. Governor Larry Hogan announced that a mass vaccination site is coming to Montgomery County. It will be located at the Germantown campus of Montgomery College and scheduled to open the week of April 5. The site will be able to distribute 3,000 doses of COVID-19 vaccine per day and while we do not yet know when we will have the full amount, we are ready. I want to thank the Governor and his staff, who have been working with our staff on the logistics for a mass vaccination site. I also want to thank the County Council, our State and Federal delegations, Montgomery College and Holy Cross hospital.
This site will be more accessible by public transit and to many in our community who have been hard hit by this virus. Because it is a mass vaccination site in partnership with the State, it also will be available to residents throughout the State—not just Montgomery County residents. This is the same as all State-operated mass vaccination sites. Our residents have been able to access mass vaccination sites elsewhere in the State.
While we are thrilled that the site is coming here, I want to emphasize that we are still waiting on increased doses. The Governor also expanded the number of people eligible for vaccinations. To check on whether you are eligible, click this link https://covidlink.maryland.gov/content/vaccine/.
We are hopeful that more doses will arrive in the coming weeks and months, but please do not confuse eligibility with availability. You will be able to get vaccinated, but it may take some time and patience.
I am also happy to report that more than 27 percent of our residents have received at least one dose, and virtually all educational staff—in Montgomery County Public Schools and private schools—have been vaccinated or have been offered an appointment.
On a different note, we all know that COVID-19 has hit certain populations particularly hard both in illness and employment. Consequently, many renters are having difficulty keeping up with rent payments. The recently passed Federal American Recovery Act will bring some desperately needed relief, including rent relief, but it will take some time. That is why I joined with the County Executives of Prince George’s and Anne Arundel counties to ask the Governor to extend the eviction moratorium until the end of June. That would provide the necessary assistance to tenants and landlords.
As we head into Passover and Easter celebrations and spring break, I wish you good celebrations and ask you to please continue to follow guidelines: maintain physical distance, avoid large crowds and please wear masks.
We will get through this together.