**FILE** Montgomery County Executive Marc Elrich
**FILE** Montgomery County Executive Marc Elrich

Montgomery County won’t join the rest of the state in beginning Phase 3 of coronavirus reopening efforts Friday.

County Executive Marc Elrich said his jurisdiction, which has the second-highest number of coronavirus cases in the state, will stay where it is for now, WUSA-TV (Channel 9) reported.

Elrich said the county’s efforts toward combating the coronavirus have improved because of strict reopening practices but cautioned against opening too soon.

“This is not party time,” he said, WUSA reported. “We don’t exist in a vacuum. There’s no wall around the county, no wall around the D.C. metro area. Our people travel across borders. So, unfortunately, unlike Vegas, what happens someplace else around here doesn’t stay someplace else — you bring it home.”

Gov. Larry Hogan, who announced Tuesday that the state can enter Stage 3 beginning Friday at 5 p.m., said individual counties can decide whether to follow suit.

Prince George’s County, another D.C.-area jurisdiction, also announced that it wouldn’t enter the third phase.

WI Guest Author

This correspondent is a guest contributor to The Washington Informer.

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