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Govs On Deck – May 8, 2020
Happy Friday, everyone and welcome to today’s edition of “Govs on Deck.” We’re still here, we’re still daily, and we hope you are all still safe and healthy.
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Dem Govs Get It Done:
NOTE: This is an overview of recent actions, not a comprehensive roundup of everything our incredible governors are doing to combat the COVID-19 pandemic. Want more examples? Send me an email and I can help you track down answers.
- COLORADO Gov. Jared POLIS extended the state’s emergency declaration for 30 days.
- NEW MEXICO Gov. Michelle LUJAN GRISHAM extended a modified emergency declaration requested by the mayor of Gallup through noon on Sunday, May 10, as that city continues to work to contain the COVID-19 virus.
Stay at home orders:
- CALIFORNIA Gov. Gavin NEWSOM announced that the state moves into Stage 2 of modifying the state’s stay at home order today. Regional variance allows for counties to move further into Stage 2 when they attest to meeting certain criteria.
- MICHIGAN Gov. Gretchen WHITMER signed an executive order to extend Michigan’s Stay Home, Stay Safe order to May 28th. The governor’s order will allow manufacturing workers, including those at Michigan’s Big 3 auto companies, to resume work on Monday, May 11th as part of her MI Safe Start Plan.
- PENNSYLVANIA Gov. Tom WOLF extended the stay at home orders for all counties in the red phase of Pennsylvania’s reopening plan through June 4th.
- RHODE ISLAND Gov. Gina M. RAIMONDO announced that Rhode Island’s stay-at-home order will lift this Saturday, May 9th.
- CONNECTICUT Gov. Ned LAMONT announced that his administration is utilizing seven criteria in its consideration for Phase 1 of Connecticut’s reopening efforts: 14-day decline of hospitalizations, increased testing availability, sufficient contact tracing capacity, the ability to protect vulnerable populations, adequate health care capacity, adequate supply of PPE, and appropriate workplace safeguards.
- KENTUCKY Gov. Andy BESHEAR announced the second phase of reopening the commonwealth’s economy but urged patience and caution. All re-opening businesses should follow the 10 rules of staying healthy at work as well as industry-specific guidance, which will be issued as soon as possible. The new tentative dates for reopening are May 22 – Restaurants, with limited 33% capacity and outdoor seating, June 1 – Movie theaters, fitness centers, June 11 – Campgrounds, June 15 – Child care, with reduced capacity; and potentially low-touch and outdoor youth sports,
- MICHIGAN Gov. Gretchen WHITMER detailed the six phases of her MI Safe Start Plan to re-engage Michigan’s economy. The governor has worked with leaders in health care, business, labor, and education to develop the plan, and announced today that Michigan is in phase three.
- NEVADA Gov. Steve SISOLAK announced that Nevada can move into the first phase of reopening the state beginning on May 9th. During Phase 1, individuals are encouraged to stay home as much as possible and to wear masks in public, as well as continuing to follow aggressive social distancing protocols. Employees who interact with the public must wear face coverings. Certain businesses will not be able to open during Phase 1. The final decisions on how gaming establishments reopen in Nevada will be determined by the Gaming Control Board, but they will not be reopening in Phase 1.
- OREGON Gov. Kate BROWN announced new details of her framework for rebuilding a safe and strong Oregon, including new guidance for counties and businesses on the phased reopening process. The guidance is the product of a robust engagement process with stakeholders, doctors, health experts, business owners, and local officials to chart a path forward while keeping Oregonians healthy and safe.
- PENNSYLVANIA Gov. Tom WOLF signed new orders providing guidance for the 24 counties moving to the yellow phase today. The order also addresses the limited reopening of businesses in the yellow phase, detailing those businesses previously deemed non-life-sustaining as being permitted to reopen if they follow the guidance for safety for staff, customers, and facility.
- RHODE ISLAND Gov. Gina RAIMONDO announced that the state will enter Phase 1 of the reopening efforts with the following restrictions: Non-critical retail stores will reopen with capacity limits; Elective medical procedures resume under safety guidelines; Everyone who can work from home, should work from home. Offices will be permitted to start allowing people to come and go on a very limited basis.; Some state parks will reopen with limited parking.
- RHODE ISLAND Gov. Gina RAIMONDO will issue a new executive order extending the ban on social gatherings of five people until May 22nd.
- RHODE ISLAND Gov. Gina RAIMONDO will extend her executive order until May 22 requiring anyone traveling into the state from another state to self-quarantine for 14-days. An order requiring international travelers to quarantine for 14 days will be extended until June 5th.
- DELAWARE Gov. John CARNEY signed a modification to his state of emergency declaration, rescheduling Delaware’s presidential primary for July 7th. The Delaware Department of Elections will mail absentee ballot applications to all registered Democrats and Republicans in the State of Delaware, providing all eligible registered Delaware voters the opportunity to vote by absentee ballot in the presidential primary election.
- CALIFORNIA Gov. Gavin NEWSOM released updated industry guidance – including for retail, manufacturing, and logistics – to begin reopening with modifications that reduce risk and establish a safer environment for workers and customers.
- WASHINGTON Gov. Jay INSLEE issued guidance for resuming the car wash industry under the Safe Start Phase 1 recovery plan laid out earlier this week. In Phase 1, car wash operations may resume after meeting specific criteria, effective May 7th.
- RHODE ISLAND Gov. Gina RAIMONDO will extend her executive order requiring health insurers to cover telemedicine for primary care, specialty care, and mental and behavioral health care through June 5th.
Testing and tracing:
- CONNECTICUT Gov. Ned LAMONT announced that his administration is lifting certain regulations on who can order diagnostic tests to allow for a major expansion of COVID-19 testing in the state. This includes the suspension of the requirement that patients receive a referral from a physician or other prescribing medical provider prior to being administered a test, and the modification of state laws and regulations in order to allow these tests to be conducted by pharmacists.
- DELAWARE Gov. John CARNEY announced a significant expansion of Delaware’s statewide testing program. The plan will be implemented in partnership with Delaware’s hospital systems, primary care physicians, Federally Qualified Health Centers, and community organizations statewide. The new testing program will allow Delaware to conduct 80,000 tests monthly – more than four times the current level of testing statewide.
- KENTUCKY Gov. Andy BESHEAR announced a new partnership with First Care Clinics to expand testing as more businesses reopen. First Care Clinics can now provide COVID-19 tests at 13 locations, seven days a week across the state, at no cost to employees or their employers. Kentuckians can schedule a test online.
- MAINE Gov. Janet MILLS announced that her administration has secured a major expansion of COVID-19 testing for the state. The administration has partnered with Maine-based IDEXX Laboratories, Inc. to purchase enough of the company’s recently authorized COVID-19 testing kits to more than triple the State’s testing capacity. The breakthrough will soon allow anyone in Maine suspected of having COVID-19 to receive a test.
- MICHIGAN Gov. Gretchen WHITMER announced free drive-thru COVID-19 testing through a partnership with Kroger Health.
- NEW YORK Gov. Andrew CUOMO announced the results of the state’s antibody testing survey of healthcare workers. The survey tested approximately 27,000 employees from 25 downstate health care facilities and found that the infection rate among health care workers is about the same or lower than the infection rate of the general population.
- KENTUCKY Gov. Andy BESHEAR announced that FEMA is coordinating two shipments totaling a 14-day supply of personal protective equipment to all 15,400 Medicaid and Medicare-certified nursing homes. The shipments are meant to supplement existing efforts to provide equipment to nursing homes.
- CONNECTICUT’s Department of Labor announced that it has made active the filing site so those who are self-employed can complete the necessary filing applications for Pandemic Unemployment Assistance.
- WASHINGTON Gov. Jay INSLEE issued guidance this week for restarting essential workforce development programs under the Safe Start Phase 1 recovery plan laid out earlier this week. In Phase 1, low-risk higher education and critical infrastructure workforce training work are allowed to resume, effective May 5.
- NEW YORK Gov. Andrew CUOMO announced the state’s $25 million Nourish New York Initiative has purchased food and products from more than 2,100 New York farms and provided support to nearly 50 food banks, soup kitchens and food pantries to date. Within the next week, more than 20,000 households across the state will receive Nourish New York products.
- NEW YORK Gov. Andrew CUOMO announced the state’s moratorium on COVID-related residential or commercial evictions will be extended until August 20th. The governor also announced the state is banning late payments or fees for missed rent payments during the eviction moratorium, and allowing renters facing financial hardship due to COVID-19 to use their security deposit as payment and repay their security deposit over time.
- PENNSYLVANIA Gov. Tom WOLF signed an executive order that protects Pennsylvanians from foreclosures or evictions through July 10th. The action builds on a Pennsylvania Supreme Court order which closed court eviction proceedings until May 11 and ensures no renter or homeowner will be removed from their home for 60 more days.
- KENTUCKY Gov. Andy BESHEAR announced that the Kentucky Transportation Cabinet has been awarded nearly $22.9 million for relief of public transit agencies that have been hit hard by the deadly COVID-19 pandemic.
- MINNESOTA Gov. Tim WALZ unveiled a new five-point plan to provide more robust support to our state’s long-term care facilities. The five-point plan will be implemented in the coming days to bolster the significant work that has been taking place already within facilities and the public health sector. The comprehensive approach includes a range of priorities such as expanded testing, enhanced support for infection prevention, providing masks and other personal protective equipment when supplies run short, and ensuring adequate staffing even as facilities face significant numbers of COVID-19 cases among residents or staff.
- NEW YORK’s “Wear A Mask” PSA challenge is getting some great submissions. Check out a few here, here, and here.
Stay safe everyone and wash your hands!