With the Legislature on recess, COVID-19 cases rising, and many in Massachusetts waiting on the governor's decision about 2022, Gov. Charlie Baker and first lady Lauren Baker are leaving Thursday on a week-long "family trip" to California, according the the governor's office.
Baker and his wife were planning to leave Thursday morning for the West Coast, and plan to return to Massachusetts on Wednesday evening, a spokesman said.
It was not immediately clear where in California the couple was headed, or if they would be traveling with anyone else.
August is a month during which activity on Beacon Hill typically slows down, but the spread of the Delta variant of the COVID-19 virus has kept many elected officials on their toes during a stretch traditionally marked by out-of-office messages.
Baker last week updated the state's public health guidance to recommended facial coverings in public indoor settings for some individuals who are fully vaccinated, as well as those who are unvaccinated, and calls continue for the state to require mask in schools for all students and staff this fall. The governor has also said he has no plans to reinstitute travel restrictions a this time.
Baker has not yet made a decision public on whether he will seek a third term in 2022. The governor has repeatedly said he will share his plans "soon" after talking over the decision with his wife, family and Lt. Gov. Karyn Polito. With Baker out of the state, Polito assumes the role of acting governor in case of any emergencies.