Maine ends COVID-19 visitor testing and quarantine needs

PORTLAND, Maine (AP) — Effective Saturday, all states will be exempt from Maine’s COVID-19 travel requirements.

The state is exempting all states from testing and quarantine requirements but that could change based on the spread of variants, said Dr. Nirav Shah, director of the Maine Center for Disease Control and Prevention.

The policy change is based on a successful travel season last summer where there was little transmission of COVID-19 from visitors to Maine. The introduction of vaccines also played a role in the decision, he said.

If states see a spike in cases of highly contagious COVID-19 variants, Maine will reinstate quarantine and testing requirements, Shah said.

Regardless of the policy, it’s a good idea to be tested when returning to Maine from an out-of-state visit, he said.

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MASSACHUSETTS

An annual gathering at the Massachusetts State House recognizing immigrants will take place virtually this year because of the pandemic.

The Massachusetts Immigrant and Refugee Advocacy Coalition says it’s 25th annual Immigrants’ Day will be held May 4 on Zoom and Facebook Live.

Boston Mayor Kim Janey, state Sen. William Brownsberger, state Rep. Ruth Balser, and Eva Millona, head of the MIRA Coalition, are among the featured speakers.

The event typically bringing hundreds of immigrants and refugees to the State House to meet with elected officials and advocate for their legislative priorities.

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NEW HAMPSHIRE

An annual race for runners to the summit of Mount Washington is back on schedule this year.

The 60th Mount Washington Road Race is scheduled for June 19-20 up the steep 7.6-mile (12.2 kilometers) road to the 6,288-foot (1.9 kilometers) summit.

The women’s race will be held on the first day; the men’s race o the second. Last year’s race was canceled because of the coronavirus pandemic.

Runners come from all over the country for the race.

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VERMONT

The Vermont Health Department is scheduling vaccine clinics at various colleges after the state opened up eligibility to out-of-state students this week.

There were also many open appointments at other sites this weekend and at college campuses in the coming days that are open to all eligible Vermonters aged 16 and older, said Human Services Secretary Mike Smith on Friday.

Clinics will be held at University of Vermont on Sunday, Middlebury College and Bennington College on Tuesday, St. Michael’s College on Thursday, Northern Vermont University in Lyndon on Friday and Castleton University next Saturday, May 8, he said.

People can make an appointment on the Health Department’s website or by calling 855-722-7878;.

Smith is also advising Vermonters to put their vaccination card in a safe place.

“I recommend taking a photo of it with your smart phone and keeping it handy as you may need it if you decide to travel,” he said Friday during the governor’s twice-weekly virus briefing.

Vermonters who lose their vaccination card can request a record of their vaccination from the state registry or from their health care provider.

To request a record through the registry, email vaxrecordrequest@vermont.gov or call 888-688-4667 option 3, he said.

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