Connecticut Guidance on Business Exemption Status Under Executive Order 7H

On March 20, 2020, Governor Ned Lamont signed Executive Order 7H. Executive Order 7H stipulates that the in-person workforce for any business not classified as “essential” under the published guidance of Connecticut’s Department of Economic and Community Development (the “DECD”) be reduced by 100%. Those businesses that are currently classified as “essential” are detailed below.

Citizens should be aware that Governor Lamont’s Order only covers places of business. Businesses not classified as “essential” are permitted to continue off-site activities. Businesses may also continue operating from residences or through telecommunication channels.

Governor Lamont’s Order is effective March 23, 20202 at 8:00 PM and will remain in effect through April 22, 2020.

For purposes of Executive Order 7H, “essential” businesses are listed as follows:

I. Essential workers in the 16 Critical Infrastructure Sectors Identified by the Department of Homeland Security

II. Healthcare Operations 

  1. biotechnology therapies
  2. consumer health products and services
  3. doctor and dentist offices
  4. elder care, including adult day care
  5. health care plans and health care data
  6. home health care workers or aides
  7. hospitals
  8. manufacturing, distributing, warehousing, and supplying of pharmaceuticals, including research and development
  9. medical marijuana dispensaries and producers
  10. medical supplies and equipment providers, including devices, diagnostics, services, and any other healthcare related supplies or services
  11. medical wholesale and distribution
  12. nursing homes, or residential health care facilities or congregate care facilities
  13. pharmacies
  14. physical therapy and chiropractic offices
  15. research and laboratory services, including testing and treatment of COVID-19
  16. veterinary and animal health services
  17. walk-in-care health facilities

III. Infrastructure

  1. airports/airlines
  2. commercial trucking
  3. dam maintenance and support
  4. education-related functions at the primary, secondary, or higher education level to provide support for students, including distribution of meals or faculty conducting e-learning
  5. hotels and other places of accommodation
  6. water and wastewater operations, systems, and businesses
  7. telecommunications and data centers
  8. transportation infrastructure including bus, rail, for-hire vehicles and vehicle rentals, and garages
  9. utilities including power generation, fuel supply, and transmission

IV. All manufacturing and corresponding supply chains, including aerospace, agriculture, and related support businesses

V. Retail

  1. appliances, electronics, computers, and telecom equipment
  2. big-box stores or wholesale clubs, provided they also sell groceries, consumer health products, or operate a pharmacy
  3. convenience stores
  4. gas stations
  5. grocery stores including all food and beverage retailers
  6. guns and ammunition
  7. hardware, paint, and building material stores, including home appliance sales/repair
  8. liquor/package stores and manufacturer permittees
  9. pharmacies
  10. pet and pet supply stores

VI. Food and Agriculture

  1. farms and farmer’s markets
  2. food manufacturing, processing, storage, and distribution facilities
  3. nurseries, garden centers, and agriculture supply stores
  4. restaurants/bars (provided compliance with all applicable executive orders is maintained)

VII. Services

  1. accounting and payroll services
  2. animal shelters or animal care or management, including boarding, grooming, pet walking and pet sitting
  3. auto supply, repair, towing, and service, including roadside assistance
  4. bicycle repair and service
  5. building cleaning and maintenance
  6. child care services
  7. critical operations support for financial institutions
  8. financial advisors
  9. financial institutions, including banks, credit unions, and check cashing services
  10. funeral homes, crematoriums, and cemeteries
  11. insurance companies
  12. laundromats/dry cleaning
  13. legal and accounting services
  14. mail and shipping services
  15. marinas and marine repair and service
  16. news and media
  17. real estate transactions and related services, including residential leasing and renting
  18. religious services (subject to Executive Order 7D limiting gatherings to 50 people)
  19. storage for Essential Businesses
  20. trash and recycling collection, hauling, and processing
  21. warehouse/distribution, shipping, and fulfillment

VIII. Providers of Basic Necessities to Economically Disadvantaged Populations

  1. food banks
  2. homeless shelters and congregate care facilities
  3. human services providers whose function includes the direct care of patients in state-licensed or funded voluntary programs; the care, protection, custody and oversight of individuals both in the community and in state-licensed residential facilities; those operating community shelters and other critical human services agencies providing direct care or support social service agencies

IX. Construction

  1. all skilled trades such as electricians, HVAC, and plumbers
  2. general construction, both commercial and residential
  3. other related construction firms and professionals for essential infrastructure or for emergency repair and safety purposes
  4. planning, engineering, design, bridge inspection, and other construction support activities

X. Services Necessary to Maintain the Safety, Sanitation and Essential Operations of all Residences and Other Buildings (including Services Necessary to Secure and Maintain Non-essential Workplaces)

  1. building cleaners or janitors
  2. building code enforcement
  3. disinfection
  4. doormen
  5. emergency management and response
  6. fire prevention and response
  7. general maintenance whether employed by the entity directly or a vendor
  8. home-related services, including real estate transactions, closings, appraisals, and moving services
  9. landscaping services
  10. law enforcement
  11. outdoor maintenance, including pool service
  12. pest control services
  13. security and maintenance, including steps reasonably necessary to secure and maintain non-essential businesses
  14. state marshals

XI. Vendors that Provide Essential Services or Products, including Logistics and Technology Support, Child care, and Services Needed to Ensure the Continuing Operation of Government Agencies and Provide for the Health, Safety and Welfare of the Public

  1. billboard leasing and maintenance
  2. child care services
  3. essential government services
  4. government owned or leased buildings
  5. information technology and information security
  6. logistics
  7. technology support

XII. Defense

  1. defense and national security-related business and operations supporting the U.S. Government or a contractor to the US government

Additionally, all businesses with only a single employee and/or occupant are deemed exempt under Order 7H.

Businesses not referenced above may request designation as an “Essential Business” can electronically request designation as an essential business with the following link:

Please be advised that all employees of “essential” businesses are directed to keep six feet away from each other whenever possible.


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