Report: Vermont among states with most COVID-19 restrictions

A report by the financial services website WalletHub has figured which states have the most and least restrictive COVID-19 restrictions on freedoms and the economy. Vermont has the most restrictions in the nation among states with the lowest death rates.

The Green Mountain State ranks third in the nation for its coronavirus death rate. The state never had a significant COVID outbreak like New York or Florida.

However, a new study shows it is the eighth highest state in the nation when it comes to COVID-related restrictions on personal and economic freedom.

WalletHub has been putting together rankings since May, and the latest update was on Aug. 11. The rankings include 19 metrics such as face mask policies, travel restrictions, business policies, school policies, and more.

state of Vermont

LITTLE FREEDOM: Despite having the lowest death rate in the nation and just two deaths in the past two months, Vermont has the eighth most restrictive lockdown policies in the nation according to a new study by Wallethub.

“Our data set ranges from whether child-care programs and restaurants have reopened to whether the state has required face masks in public and workplace temperature screenings,” the report’s introduction states.

Vermont ranks 44th for its tight restrictions with a score of 32.08 out of a 100-point scale.

The economic consequences of Scott’s shutdown may be dire. The Vermont Legislature’s economist is predicting revenue losses due to the economic shutdowns initiated by Gov. Phil Scott for the 2021-2022 fiscal years to be $430 million. The coronavirus used to justify the restrictive measures has currently killed 58 Vermonters, all but four over the age of 70. The state has seen only two COVID deaths in the past two months.

The state with the most regulations was California, with a score of 21.59. One California immigrant says that California Gov. Gavin Newsom’s COVID policies have cost him everything he’s gained.

“Newsom does not understand, he does not,” said Adam Kovacs, owner of a North Bay fitness company told KTVU TV. “I’m an immigrant and I worked very very hard to get here, and little by little I’m losing everything that I built.”

Newsom was the first in the nation to impose a statewide stay-at-home order on March 19, which resulted in the state having the fifth-highest unemployment rate in the nation for June. The state has had 10,600 deaths associated with COVID-19, comparable to its several thousand flu deaths each year.

The state with the fewest COVID-related restrictions was South Dakota, at 87.38. Republican Gov. Kristi Noem decided not to declare a state of emergency and shutter the state’s economy, nor remove citizens’ basic rights. The results are the state has a low death count of 165, and its economy has a $20 million budget surplus.

The study emerges as reports from nations in Europe show a trend that nations such as Sweden, which did not engage in an economic shutdown, still exhibit some of the lowest death rates while maintaining economic stability compared to its locked-down neighboring countries.

“Life has largely returned to normal in Sweden, and it all happened without the economy-destroying non-pharmaceutical interventions (NPI) demanded by the ‘public health expert’ class, who guaranteed that chaos would come to every country that disobeyed their commands to hit the self-destruct button for their nations,” The Federalist author Jordan Schachtel wrote.

One of the authors of the study Doctor Andrew Spieldenner of California State University says the nation’s economy as a whole is in for a major shake-up.

“There will be changes in the economy that we cannot predict,” he wrote. “The impact of 30,000,000 people in the US filing for unemployment (much less the people who were not part of the workforce or could not apply for unemployment) will be far-reaching. Also, some businesses found new models to keep going amidst the pandemic.”

Another author, Clair Yang, an assistant professor at the University of Washington, warns of the consequences of implementing high-tech “contact tracing” to survey those who test positive for the coronavirus.

“Research shows that many countries in the East Asian region, including South Korea, Singapore, Taiwan, and China, have implemented strict rules on digital contact tracing and used digital travel history of patients to predict risks for the general population.

“This approach would be highly controversial in the Western world. Contact tracing can be a serious infringement of individual privacy, but one’s travel data if used in the right way could also have positive external value for the general public. At the end of the day, it is a trade-off between public goods and individual rights.”

Michael Bielawski is a reporter for True North. Send him news tips at and follow him on Twitter @TrueNorthMikeB.

Images courtesy of Public domain and state of Vermont

20 thoughts on “Report: Vermont among states with most COVID-19 restrictions

  1. I started this article but felt it wasn’t worth finishing. The numbers are way off. Maybe they came from earlier in the year, like in April or May. The state of SD, mentioned in the article has to date 1,464 total deaths including 18 today. Currently, VT has a total of 134 dead including 4 today. Articles based on false facts, unintentional or otherwise fuel the fires of conspiracy. VT has the lowest total deaths and total cases in the nation and for good reasons. When a virus like covid gets into a populace the only way to protect the citizens is to do what the governor has done. He could have done it better if he followed the science like New Zealand. Because of it, the Kiwis life style has returned to normal. The only economic fallout is in its tourist industry which is being kept solvent through government subsidies. And the total deaths since March, is 25.
    On the other side of the freedom line is Kansas, a red state that wholly subscribed to Trump’s science. Until recently, people who wore masks in public were ridiculed, mocked and called commies. That state is more rural than VT, but yesterday it lost 193 of it’s citizens you can’t find an ICU bed unless someone dies. It’s the same for general recovery wards. Admittees to the hospitals are life flighted to Nebraska and Iowa. Kansas only has 22 ICU beds throughout 18 facilities. It’s total deaths are 2,741.
    I said VT could have done it better and here is one big reason. The state’s numbers began rising in the fall. I live on a tri-state corner of VT. In my town, everyday since the beginning of fall, you can see more out of stater plates than VT plates. Many of them come to their second homes or estates. They don’t quarantine and although the state requires it, it’s not enforced, and they know it. Now it’s ski season. Time will reveal if that has an adverse effect.

    • To wrap up 2020, TNR has been featuring the “most read” articles of the year. These were the stories and topics that interested readers most.

      • My bad! I didn’t realize that this is an article from earlier in the year. It explains why the data was so far off. The article date should have been referenced. I thought it was current.

  2. i sure wish businesses and people would learn the actual laws of this land starting with our rights and the supremacy clause… and the fact governors executive orders have no bearing on people and same with the false laws they push on business to make corporate business our slave owners and control our lives
    if we understood how much power we really have especially in vermont if a official even gives you attitude in this state is a crime and in certain instances a felony.. we are their boss.. and article 20 says we can instruct them at any time what to do and they have to do it.. common law “instruct” means they have to comply unless law or necessity prevents them. if they deny you service in any government run service you have the right to its a felony for them and you can arrest them on the spot.. people need to wake up .. at any point in time if we dont like the law we can assemble instruct our government or state to call a convention to amendments and even create laws to be put in place under set rules of 2/3 vote … and if the state does not abide be can arrest them on the spot for a felony.. some rule apply about while their in session but …still not the point

    118 U.S. 356 6 S.Ct. 1064 30 L.Ed. 220 YICK WO v. HOPKINS Sovereignty itself is, of course, not subject to law, for it is the author and source of law; but in our system, while sovereign powers are delegated to the agencies of government, sovereignty itself remains with the people, by whom and for whom all government exists and acts.

    Luther v. Borden 48 U.S. 1 (1849)

    the sovereignty in every State resides in the people of the State, and that they may alter and change their form of government at their own pleasure

  3. Isn’t it ironic that a state where folks are behaving themselves despite all the of the selfrightish minority screaming about theirConstitutional right being abused happens to lead the parade of low virus states. GET WITH THE PROGRAM!!!!!

  4. Attention Vermonters.
    Please research “Staph Infection Mask Wearing” and the like when searching.

    I have seen the most heart breaking pictures and articles now about kids and young people getting incredibly serious staph, infections from forced mask wearing.
    You can die or be plagued with a lifetime of medical issues when you get staph. going in your body. The young ones that be then very damaged by the antibiotics needed to fight it.
    Anyone that has raised kids know that they have dirty faces, they don’t wash up very well, they have faces full of zits that are filled with bacteria, and the mask on their face is creating a petri-dish environment to grow this bad stuff in.. the media is not reporting this stuff. There are also dental issues arising. Dentists are reporting that they are seeing patients with swollen gums and other things being created from bacteria.
    Please research this stuff and get it on the Radar.
    True North, get a reporter on this. It’s critical that people know this stuff, especially as it’s effecting kids.
    Mask wearing needs to be a CHOICE that people make based on their own medical situations.
    People with healthy immune systems should not be wearing masks, and certainly being forced to by the government.

    • *excuse my typos please, we really need an edit button here. I missed them even though I did re-read it.

    • Those in the land down under continually warn the citizens here, Never give up your arms as we did. It will be game over at that point if Biden prevails.

  5. The restrictions are over the top and not enforced much except by peer pressure, so we’re going to NH on weekends for leisure and fun to allow our sanity to stay in check. Way to much restrictions VT! NH making big tourist bucks $$$$ as hotels full,,,,

  6. Just let me start by saying, I’m not a fan of wearing a mask,
    but I do carry one and wear it when need be !!

    So I have been working almost every day, as stated I wear a mask
    use hand sanitize and social distance when I have to, I’m 69 and I’ll
    play the game.

    I’m glad to see Vermont’s numbers are great, but my worry is the
    spike that due to hit us !! I live in Burlington and the college crowd
    has arrived and just let me say, from what I see the ” Mayor ” better
    get a handle it soon.

    90% use No mask, social distancing is out of thequestion , parties
    & games in the Frat Houses and especially in the rental properties
    you ” No Adult ” supervision so lack of concern for others……..

    Maybe they don’t the rules, maybe they should have stayed in there
    home state………… pretty pathetic !!

    For the 10% that have common sense and follow the rules, ..Thank You !!

    • You have given in to the fear tactics. The true fatality rate for the Wuhan fluy is 0.04%…about the same as the common flu.

      • Absolutely, where are the numbers on the actual seasonal flu? Some people think this Chinese flu is in the open air. How can people be so afraid that they wear a mask outside or in their car driving alone? People ignore the health risks of breathing their own exhaust all day because the media is fueling the panic. The media asks stupid questions instead of getting the truth to the public. And the governor is all pumped up because he thinks he saved us all but we are dieing a slow death from politics and unconstitutional mandates. And we have to deal with the social enforcers who know nothing about the virus but act as good soldiers in the virus war. I’m also past 60 years old and it infuriates me to see a public so intimidated and afraid when so many things much worse can kill or me us ill. I would be more worried strolling in the open air in Burlington because of crime caused by the drug scourge.

    • I’d be a lot more worried about being effected by Crime in Burlington than the coronavirus.
      The odds of that effecting you are a whole lot greater.
      What will being robbed do for your health?

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