COVID-19 Update

March 23, 2020

As I’m sure you are aware, today Governor Baker issued and " ORDER ASSURING CONTINUED OPERATION OF THE ESSENTIAL SERVICES IN THE COMMONWEALTH, CLOSING CERTAIN WORKPLACES, AND PROHIBITING GATHERINGS OF MORE THAN 10 PEOPLE (COVID-19 Order No. 13) that directs the closure of all non-essential businesses and organizations in the Commonwealth beginning at noon Tuesday March 24th until noon Tuesday April 7th. In anticipation of such an order, HBRAMA leadership and legislative counsel has been working with other industry groups to protect the interests of the Commonwealth’s home builders and related businesses, and we are pleased to report that the list of “ Essential Services and Workforces” accompanying the Order expressly includes  “Construction Workers who support the construction, operation, inspection, and maintenance of construction sites and construction projects (including housing construction)” as well as  “Commercial retail stores that supply essential sectors, including . . . hardware and home improvement” and “Workers to ensure the continuity of building functions, including local and state inspectors and administrative support of inspection services who are responsible for the inspection of elevators, escalators, lifts, buildings, plumbing and gas fitting, electrical work, and other safety related professional work."

Additionally, the text of the Order indicates that it supersedes and makes inoperative any order or rule imposed by a municipality that will or might impede or interfere with the achievement or objectives of this order. HBRAMA’s leadership and legislative counsel are seeking further clarification on this provision as it may relate to recent local prohibitions that we are aware of having been adopted by the City of Boston, City of Cambridge and Town of Nantucket.

Click here to find a NOTICE regarding the Order’s designation of construction and an “Essential Service” that is allowed to continue. You may want to post this on your job site to preempt any questions or objections from passers-by’s.