Govs On Deck – April 2, 2020
Good Thursday afternoon and welcome to today’s edition of “Govs on Deck.” We’re still here, we’re still daily, and we hope you are all safe and healthy.
Questions or suggestions? Send me a note at firstname.lastname@example.org. You can find us all on Twitter too – @A_Tall_Turner, @CEAmestoy, @JerusalemDemsas, and @andersonkayjay.
A different sort of week:
Because of the quickly evolving situation, we are changing this newsletter to become a daily roundup of how our states are responding to the COVID 19 pandemic.
Every day this week, we will send an overview of the actions our governors have taken the day before. We want this to be helpful, so let me know what other info/what other formats you’d like to see for these updates.
Dem Govs Get It Done:
NOTE: This is an overview of recent actions, not a comprehensive roundup of everything our incredible governors are doing. Want more examples? Send me an email and I can help you track down answers.
Presidential Major Disaster Declaration:
- MAINE Gov. Janet MILLS requested that the president issue a major disaster declaration for the state.
- DELAWARE Gov. John CARNEY signed a modification to his State of Emergency declaration, further limiting public gatherings to 10 people through May 15, or until the public health threat has been eliminated. For the purposes of the order, public gatherings include weddings, funerals, and related activities.
- NEW YORK Gov. Andrew CUOMO announced that all New York City playgrounds would be closed to address lack of adherence to social distancing guidelines.
- CONNECTICUT Gov. Ned LAMONT signed an executive order mandating that every retail establishment be required to take additional protective measures to reduce the risk of transmission of COVID-19 between and among customers, employees, and other persons such as delivery drivers and maintenance people. The order requires the commissioner of the Economic and Community Development to issue mandatory statewide rules prescribing such additional protective measures.
- DELAWARE Gov. John CARNEY signed a modification to his State of Emergency declaration requiring additional action from businesses that remain open including no more than 20 percent of stated fire capacity in the store at any given time – and no more than 10 percent during exclusive hours for high-risk populations; clearly mark six-foot spacing in check-out lines and other high-traffic areas, including outside; discontinue any self-serve foods, or product sampling; and designate staff to enforce the number of people coming into the store and enforce limits.
- LOUISIANA Gov. John Bel EDWARDS announced a new Louisiana Loan Portfolio Guaranty Program, which will offer loans of up to $100,000 to small businesses of fewer than 100 employees that are impacted by the crisis. The loans will require no payments for 180 days and carry below-market interest rates of no more than 3.5 percent.
- OREGON Gov. Kate BROWN signed an executive order placing a 90-day moratorium on commercial evictions for nonpayment.
- RHODE ISLAND Gov. Gina RAIMONDO announced a short-term bridge loan program for restaurants and small businesses (up to 10 employees).
- CALIFORNIA Gov. Gavin NEWSOM announced a major agreement between teachers, classified employees, school boards, superintendents, and principals to work together to provide distance learning to students. The agreement includes a collaboration framework for school employers and employees to work together on matters of labor and management to minimize any impact to students—including direction on implementation and delivery of distance learning, special education, and meals through the end of the school year.
- CALIFORNIA Gov. Gavin NEWSOM announced a partnership with Google to provide mobile hotspots and Chromebooks to students in rural areas to facilitate distance learning.
- COLORADO Gov. Jared POLIS extended K-12 school closures through April 30th.
- MICHIGAN Gov. Gretchen WHITMER extended K-12 school closures for the rest of the academic year. Her executive order sets guidelines for remote learning, and ensures teachers and school employees will be paid for the remainder of the school year.
- COLORADO Gov. Jared POLIS signed an executive order expanding the use of telehealth services to increase the capacity of the state’s health care system, help preserve critical personal protective equipment needed for medical professionals on the front lines, and allow Coloradans to meet with a doctor remotely.
- MINNESOTA Gov. Tim WALZ said the state is preparing to use civic facilities to create more intensive care rooms and non-ICU beds in seven regions across the state.
- NEVADA Gov. Steve SISOLAK signed the Battle Born Medical Corps emergency directive, waiving certain licensing requirements to allow Nevada to quickly bring additional health care workers into hospitals, and allow certain doctors, nurses, EMTs, and even medical students to go to work immediately. .
- NEW JERSEY Gov. Phil MURPHY signed an executive order authorizing the Division of Consumer Affairs to temporarily reactivate the licenses of recently retired health care professionals and grant temporary licenses to doctors licensed in foreign countries. The executive order also temporarily permits certain health care professionals to perform acts outside of their ordinary scope of practice and grants broad civil immunity to health care professionals and facilities providing services in support of New Jersey’s COVID-19 response efforts who are acting in good faith.
- NEW MEXICO Gov. Michelle LUJAN GRISHAM announced expanded criteria for COVID-19 testing.
- CONNECTICUT Gov. Ned LAMONT signed an executive order enacting a 60-day grace period for premium payments, policy cancellations, and non-renewals of insurance policies. No insurer in Connecticut – including life, health, auto property, casualty, and other types – may lapse or terminate a covered insurance policy because a policyholder does not pay a premium or interest during this time.
- CONNECTICUT Gov. Ned LAMONT extended the deadline to file income and expense statements to August 15.
- KANSAS Gov. Laura KELLY waived eligibility requirements for unemployment benefits to expand access to more workers.
- KENTUCKY grocery store workers can now receive the same emergency child care benefits that previously were extended to first responders and health care workers.
Homeowner / renter relief:
- CONNECTICUT Gov. Ned LAMONT signed an executive order suspending the reapplication filing requirement for the homeowners’ elderly/disabled circuit breaker tax relief program and for the homeowners’ elderly/disabled freeze tax relief program.
- MAINE Gov. Janet MILLS signed an executive order extending the State’s property tax exemption April 1st deadline.
- OREGON Gov. Kate BROWN signed an executive order strengthening her previous ban on residential evictions, and prohibits landlords from charging tenants late fees for nonpayment of rent during the moratorium.
- MINNESOTA Gov. Tim WALZ announced that applications are open for child care grants for licensed providers serving emergency workers.
Support services / funds / volunteer efforts:
- DELAWARE Gov. John CARNEY issued a community call-to-action, urging all Delaware citizens, businesses and nonprofits to offer their assistance. Delaware has launched an online tool at de.gov/coronavirus to connect Delawareans offering materials and supplies with organizations, medical providers and others in need of assistance.
- ILLINOIS Gov. JB PRITZKER announced the creation of artsforillinois.org, a new relief fund specifically dedicated to supporting artists, artisans, and cultural organizations impacted by COVID-19.
- RHODE ISLAND launched RI Delivers, Rhode Island’s connection to help those living in quarantine or isolation due to COVID-19. This service will ensure that Rhode Islanders in quarantine will have what they need to safely remain home and monitor their symptoms. Connections to groceries, home supplies, restaurants, and mutual aid groups are featured at www.RIDelivers.com.
- CALIFORNIA Gov. Gavin NEWSOM signed an executive order allowing for the immediate use of funds to support the state’s continuing efforts to protect public health and respond to the COVID-19 crisis by facilitating expenditures from the state’s Disaster Response-Emergency Operations Account as well as from any other legally available fund to help with the COVID-19 response.
- NEVADA Gov. Steve SISOLAK announced that $6.25 million in state funding to grant the state access to FEMA monies and to purchase critical items crucial to the response was approved by the Board of Examiners. The authorization is pending approval from the Interim Finance Committee.
- WISCONSIN Gov. Tony EVERS announced a second package of comprehensive legislative proposals that would provide critical investments in health services, support for essential workers, and assistance for Wisconsin families and businesses. Evers previously announced a first piece of legislation, which included additional funding and flexibility for public health professionals and healthcare professionals, a repeal of the one-week waiting period for unemployment insurance, expanding and improving access to telehealth services, among many other proposals.
- CALIFORNIA is planning to release as many as 3,500 non-violent inmates from its state prisons in an effort to reduce crowding amid an outbreak of the novel coronavirus.
- KENTUCKY Gov. Andy BESHEAR announced that the Kentucky National Guard will deploy to four regional food bank warehouses to help sort and pack food into bags and boxes, and distribute that food through “no-touch” deliveries in communities across the commonwealth.
- MICHIGAN Gov. Gretchen WHITMER signed an executive order recognizing the expanded scope of economic, educational, and civic dislocation caused by the COVID-19, equipping the administration to address fully the devastation caused by the virus, and formally declaring a state of disaster.
- MINNESOTA Gov. Tim WALZ will deliver his second state of the state address on Sunday. It will be delivered from the governor’s residence.
- NEVADA Gov. Steve SISOLAK activated the Nevada National Guard to assist in the emergency operation structure in the statewide response to COVID-19.
Sending a special happy birthday shoutout to my nephew who is celebrating his first birthday today! Stay safe everyone and wash your hands!