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Govs On Deck – October 14, 2020

Govs on Deck

Happy Wednesday, everyone. Time for another edition of “Govs on Deck!” As a reminder, your favorite newsletter comes out on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays. 

As always, questions or suggestions? Send me a note at You can find us all on Twitter too – @A_Tall_Turner@CEAmestoy, and @andersonkayjay.

We want this to be helpful, so let us 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.

What we’re talking about:

  • PENNSYLVANIA Gov. Tom WOLF penned an op-ed in Newsweek detailing how Democratic governors are the last line of defense against the Trump administration’s efforts to overturn the ACA. 

COVID-19 response:

Emergency declarations:

  • HAWAII Gov. David IGE signed a 14th supplementary emergency proclamation that extends the COVID-19 emergency period through November 30th.
  • MINNESOTA Gov. Tim WALZ extended the COVID-19 peacetime emergency.

Reopening efforts:

  • NEW MEXICO Gov. Michelle LUJAN GRISHAM announced the state of New Mexico will implement, and in some cases re-implement, several public health regulations later in the week to stem the alarming rise of COVID-19 illnesses statewide. The governor also reiterated her stark warnings from recent weeks – as COVID-19 infections have spread rapidly throughout all regions of the state, including an increase in COVID-19 hospitalizations – that New Mexico may in the near future be compelled to re-enact even more stringent public health controls.

Public gatherings:

  • CONNECTICUT Gov. Ned LAMONT signed an executive order permitting municipal authority to revert to the more restrictive pre-October 8, 2020 size and capacity limitations and rules for certain businesses and gatherings.
  • NEW JERSEY Gov. Phil MURPHY signed an executive order allowing the resumption of contact practices and competitions in indoor settings for organized sports defined as “medium risk” and “high risk” by the New Jersey Department of Health’s “Guidance for Sports Activities.”   

Business support:

  • NEW JERSEY Gov. Phil MURPHY announced $70 million in CARES ACT funding will be distributed to restaurants, microbusinesses, and other small businesses through Phase 3 of the New Jersey Economic Development Authority Small Business Emergency Assistance Grant Program.

Health care:

  • KENTUCKY Gov. Andy BESHEAR announced $2.8 million for 14 Recovery Kentucky centers across the commonwealth to help ensure safe, stable housing for those recovering from substance use disorder. Each center will be eligible for approximately $200,000 to offset costs incurred due to COVID-19. Funds also help ensure centers can continue services while protecting residents and staff from COVID-19.

Testing, tracing, and vaccination:

  • HAWAII Gov. David IGE announced that the state has arranged nearly 200 contact tracers to aid DOH in tracing any travel-related infections. He also said the state used $30 million in CARES Act funds to purchase tests and testing machines. 
  • MINNESOTA Gov. Tim WALZ announced the expansion of the state’s saliva testing program, including the opening of new saliva testing sites and a pilot of the mail-order program.


  • KANSAS Gov. Laura KELLY announced that the Kansas Department for Aging and Disability Services has partnered with a Minnesota-based supply company to launch an online order portal available to adult care homes across the state to procure PPE and infection control supplies during the COVID-19 public health emergency.
  • NEW JERSEY Gov. Phil MURPHY announced $10 million in CARES Act funding will be used to help small businesses purchase PPE through the NJEDA Small and Micro Business PPE Access Program.

Family support:

  • NEW JERSEY Gov. Phil MURPHY announced that $5 million in CARES Act funding will support food banks and other hunger relief efforts. 

Child care:

  • MINNESOTA Gov. Tim WALZ announced a $53.3 million investment available now to support child care providers and protect Minnesota families’ access to child care during the COVID-19 pandemic. 
  • WISCONSIN Gov. Tony EVERS announced $50 million in funding for an additional round of Child Care Counts payments for early care and education. 

Housing support:

  • NEW JERSEY Gov. Phil MURPHY announced that $15 million in CARES Act funding will go to support renters through the Department of Community Affairs COVID-19 Emergency Rental Assistance Program.
  • PENNSYLVANIA Gov. Tom WOLF announced the Pennsylvania Housing Finance Agency is improving the COVID Relief Mortgage and Rental Assistance Grant Program to help more renters and homeowners remain in their homes. Effective Oct. 17, landlords and mortgagees will have a new option to reach agreements with renters and homeowners for repayment of rent and mortgage payments above the program’s $750 monthly cap. The program previously required them to forgive the balance of the payment.

Travel restrictions:

  • CONNECTICUTNEW JERSEY, and NEW YORK’s regional travel advisory was updated: Michigan, Ohio, and Virginia have been added to the list of impacted locations that meet the metrics to qualify, and no states or territories were removed from the list this week.
  • HAWAII Gov. David IGE announced additional details of the pre-travel testing program, which is set to launch Thursday, Oct. 15, 2020. All counties will be participating in the pre-travel testing program, which allows travelers to bypass the mandatory 14-day quarantine, though there will be different rules in different counties.

Other efforts:

  • WASHINGTON Gov. Jay INSLEE  introduced a new state effort to help communities recover from the social and economic damage wrought by the COVID-19 pandemic. The Washington Recovery Group will help strengthen the state’s recovery efforts. The new group will help state agencies coordinate with local governments, higher education, and the private sector.

Beyond COVID-19 

Criminal justice reform:

  • CALIFORNIA Gov. Gavin NEWSOM released recommendations from his policing advisors for improving police response to protests and demonstrations and a series of actions in response. The release of the report follows the governor’s signing of a package of legislation last month to reform policing practices and tackle discrimination in the criminal and juvenile justice systems.
  • MICHIGAN Gov. Gretchen WHITMER signed bipartisan legislation reforming Michigan’s criminal expungement laws making it easier for people who have committed certain felonies and misdemeanors to have their record expunged. 


  • DELAWARE Gov. John CARNEY announced an agreement with Delawareans for Educational Opportunity and the Delaware NAACP to make significant new investments in Delaware public schools and dedicate additional funding for Delaware’s most disadvantaged students to help close achievement gaps.

Health care:

  • NEW YORK Gov. Andrew CUOMO announced nearly $853,000 in a second round of funding awards to five providers across New York State to enable them to purchase and operate mobile treatment vehicles.
  • PENNSYLVANIA Gov. Tom WOLF’s administration’s health care reform plan received support from multiple health care organizations and professionals. 


  • ILLINOIS Gov. JB PRITZKER’s administration announced an additional $1 million in spending for census-related media outreach in communities of color across the state.

Economic development:

  • NORTH CAROLINA Gov. Roy COOPER announced that Hamilton Drywall Products will create 34 new jobs in Union County.
  • NORTH CAROLINA Gov. Roy COOPER announced that Benestar Brands will create 129 jobs in Cleveland County.
  • NORTH CAROLINA Gov. Roy COOPER announced that UPS will undertake a significant expansion to its North Carolina presence with the addition of 592 jobs in Guilford and Alamance counties.

Workforce development:

  • PENNSYLVANIA Gov. Tom WOLF announced the approval of new funding for the Iron Workers Local 404 Joint Apprenticeship and Training Committee through the Department of Community and Economic Development’s Apprenticeship Grant Program.

Other efforts:

  • KENTUCKY Gov. Andy BESHEAR announced $8.5 million in transportation funding to replace about 170 buses and support other efforts to expand reliable and sustainable transportation in Kentucky. The funding will go toward the purchase of cleaner emission transit buses in areas of Kentucky challenged with meeting federal air quality standards.
  • NEW JERSEY Gov. Phil MURPHY signed an executive order directing the Office of the Attorney General, including the Department of Law & Public Safety’s Division on Civil Rights, Division of Criminal Justice, Division of State Police, and Juvenile Justice Commission, as well as the Department of Children & Families, the Department of Education, the Office of Homeland Security & Preparedness, and the Office of the Secretary of Higher Education, to implement the recommendations of the Interagency Task Force to Combat Youth Bias that do not require legislation.
  • NEW JERSEY Gov. Phil MURPHY announced the launch of the Spanish language version of — the State’s new digital front door for businesses looking to start, operate, and grow in the Garden State. 

Stay safe everyone, wear a mask, and wash your hands! See you on Friday!