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Govs On Deck – September 28, 2020

Govs on Deck

We’ve arrived at yet another Monday which means 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@JerusalemDemsas, 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.

COVID-19 response:

Federal requests:

  • PENNSYLVANIA Gov. Tom WOLF urged President Donald Trump to help solve problems for Pennsylvanians instead of exacerbating public health risks in the commonwealth. He called on the president to abide by COVID-19 mitigation guidance when visiting the commonwealth and forgo holding unsafe rallies in Pennsylvania.

Emergency declarations:

  • NEW JERSEY Gov. Phil MURPHY signed an executive order extending the state’s public health emergency.

Reopening efforts:

  • ILLINOIS’ Department of Public Health reported 17 counties in Illinois are considered to be at a warning level for COVID-19. 

Face coverings:

  • MICHIGAN Gov. Gretchen WHITMER signed an executive order requiring face coverings for students in grades K-5. 

Public gatherings:

  • CONNECTICUT’s Department of Public Health released comprehensive guidance and recommendations for organized sports, including youth and adult club and private league play.

Business guidance:

  • CONNECTICUT Gov. Ned LAMONT signed an executive order extending the previously enacted prohibition on the sale of alcohol by certain permittees without the sale of food until at least November 9, 2020.
  • MICHIGAN Gov. Gretchen WHITMER signed an executive order amending the MI Safe Start order to reopen movie theaters and performance venues.

Schools and students:

  • WASHINGTON Gov. Jay INSLEE extended a proclamation related to the Washington residency requirement for public university tuition waivers in response to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Health care:

  • ILLINOIS Gov. JB PRITZKER announced the distribution of $140 million in federal CARES Act payments to Medicaid providers to offset the costs of fighting the coronavirus pandemic. This first round of funding will help Medicaid providers cover COVID-19 related costs, such as hazard pay for direct care workers, personal protective equipment purchases, and other previously unbudgeted expenditures incurred.

Worker support:

  • HAWAII’s Department of Business, Economic Development and Tourism, through the Hawai‘i Technology Development Corporation, is currently offering complimentary access to the Coursera online learning platform with registration open until Oct. 31, 2020. 
  • NEVADA Gov. Steve SISOLAK announced that the Governor’s Office of Workforce Innovation is the recipient of a $13 million federal grant to support short-term job training programs to help prepare unemployed and underemployed individuals for in-demand occupations in Nevada.

Other efforts:

  • CALIFORNIA Gov. Gavin NEWSOM signed legislation strengthening protections for LGBTQ+ Californians, including a measure to track the effects of COVID-19 on the community, a bill establishing the Transgender and Wellness Equity Fund, and a bill requiring the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation to house transgender, gender-nonconforming and intersex individuals in a manner that matches their gender identity while supporting health and safety.
  • CONNECTICUT Gov. Ned LAMONT signed an executive order extending contracting flexibility regulated to student privacy data.
  • DELAWARE Gov. John CARNEY issued a revision to the omnibus State of Emergency order, resuming the processing of requests under Delaware’s Freedom of Information Act.
  • RHODE ISLAND Gov. Gina RAIMONDO signed an executive order extending a number of emergency measures, including a minimum unemployment insurance benefit of $100, temporary reimbursement rate increases for child care providers, and easing some regulations on health care providers. 

Beyond COVID-19 

Natural disasters:

  • CALIFORNIA Gov. Gavin NEWSOM issued an emergency proclamation for the counties of Del Norte, Los Angeles, and Mendocino to bolster the response to various fires that have burned thousands of acres, destroyed homes, and caused the evacuation of residents.
  • COLORADO Gov. Jared POLIS signed an executive order memorializing a verbal disaster declaration from August 28, 2020, for the East Fork Fire in Las Animas County. 

Health care:

  • CALIFORNIA Gov. Gavin NEWSOM signed a package of bills that will improve access to quality mental health and substance use disorder services for all Californians, as well as measures that help homeless Californians suffering from behavioral health challenges access the help they need.


  • CALIFORNIA Gov. Gavin NEWSOM signed several bills to strengthen protections and expand opportunities for refugees and immigrants in California, including a bill that strengthens accountability around conditions of confinement at private, for-profit detention facilities, including immigration detention facilities, operating in California.

Economic development:

  • KENTUCKY Gov. Andy BESHEAR announced that Summit Biosciences Inc., a Lexington-based pharmaceutical company, is expanding its operation at the University of Kentucky Coldstream Research Campus with a more than $19 million investment expected to create up to 78 full-time jobs.
  • MONTANA Gov. Steve BULLOCK announced that registration is open for the 2020 Business of Outdoor Recreation Summit that will bring hundreds of industry leaders, community members, and recreation and conservation groups to promote outdoor recreation in Montana.

Other efforts:

  • CALIFORNIA Gov. Gavin NEWSOM proclaimed Friday as Native American Day and advanced several policies that seek to examine and address historic wrongs and promote access and inclusion for California Native peoples. 
  • CALIFORNIA Gov. Gavin NEWSOM signed twelve bills to protect consumers from financial predators and abusive business practices including legislation that establishes the Department of Financial Protection and Innovation, adding 90 positions over the next three years to transform the agency into California’s version of the federal Consumer Financial Protection Bureau.
  • CONNECTICUT Gov. Ned LAMONT announced that his administration will be conducting a study to evaluate workforce efficiency and organizational design that will prepare the state for a significant number of anticipated retirements among state employees by 2022.
  • KANSAS Gov. Laura KELLY announced more than $1.8 million in 2021 grant awards for the Federal Edward Byrne Memorial Justice Assistance Grant Program. The JAG funds are provided to criminal justice system partners to address crime and improve public safety. 

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