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State-by-State COVID-19 Guidance

Assisting businesses with evolving COVID-19 orders and helping them return to work.

Husch Blackwell has developed this resource center to monitor and update the rapidly evolving COVID-19 rules, restrictions, orders and guidance that affect how and when businesses across the country can reopen their workplaces to employees, clients and customers. These state and local measures cover a range of issues, including business restrictions, gathering limitations, and full-scale shelter-in-place orders. Each jurisdiction is on a different timeline regarding the expiration of orders and the re-opening of their economies.

Choose from the state map below to access the latest information in that state and/or key localities inside that state. For assistance in working with states to ensure your business operations can continue, our government affairs team at Husch Blackwell Strategies can assist you with working to make sure any future orders cover your specific business. We will update this resource center daily as new information and guidance is released.

   

State-by-State Map of COVID-19 Guidance

Please click on the state you are interested in to view state-specific COVID-19 information.

State & Local COVID-19 Update for October 15, 2020

(current as of 7:00 p.m. CDT)

Alabama:

On September 30, Gov. Kay Ivey signed an order that extended the state’s “Safer at Home” policies. This extends the statewide mask mandate and existing COVID-19 health order until 5 p.m. November 8, 2020. In addition, to ensure the safe administration of upcoming elections, Governor Ivey’s order allows training of election workers to be done remotely, additional compensation for poll workers, and counting of absentee ballots starting 7 a.m. on Election Day. It also issued clarifying language regarding certain terms regarding her May 8, 2020 “Safer At Home” proclamation.

(Birmingham): On October 1, 2020, Mayor Randall Woodin amended his Executive Order 87-20 in order to add court employees to the list of those ineligible for benefits under the city’s emergency paid sick and expanded FMLA leave policy. Under the original order, employees of business must self-certify that they do not exhibit any COVID-19 symptoms, including but not limited to: fever, cough, shortness of breath, muscle pain, chills, or new loss of taste or smell. If the employee begins to show symptoms at work, he/she must report this to his/her supervisor. Supervisors must report this and all potential exposures to the department director. Employees must also follow the City’s Face Covering Protocol adopted in May, which has not been updated by the order.

(Tuscaloosa): On September 17, the City of Tuscaloosa imposed an executive order banning walk-up sale of alcohol at bars (only seated customers may order) and maintaining a 50 percent capacity at all bars. Clubs and Entertainment facilities may only maintain 25 percent capacity. The order was amended on Sept 24, 2020 to extend until October 8.

On September 29, the City of Tuscaloosa rescinded executive orders regarding bar and restaurant operations after the Alcohol Beverage Control Board passed emergency rules mandating that bars maintain six-feet between patrons and only operate at 50 percent capacity.

District of Columbia:

On October 14, Mayor Bowser delivered a coronavirus situational report which highlighted that Washington, DC has the second lowest uninsured rate in the nation. The report also announced that health insurance open enrollment is from November 1, 2020 – January 31, 2021, and that anyone who needs insurance can enroll and coverage can start immediately as long as COVID-19 is selected as a qualifying event. All plans cover diagnosis, testing and treatment for COVID-19 at no cost to the patient.

Florida:

(Miami-Dade County): Mayor Gimenez issued Amendment No. 1 to Emergency Order 30-20, which eliminates the requirement that businesses consent to inspections and submit compliance plans after violating the Order. Mayor Gimenez further extended the Declaration of State of Local Emergency for an additional 7 days, commencing on October 15, 2020.

Hawaii:

(Kauai County): With Governor Ige’s concurrence, Mayor Kawakami issued Mayor’s Emergency Rule #20, which adopts a negative test exception for the County. In addition to the pre-travel testing program requirements, the Rule provides that (1) interisland travelers cannot use a test administered in the County, to ensure travelers do not take a test prior to exposure to COVID-19 during their trip; and (2) require travelers to take one test per trip. Multiple trips may not be taken to and from the County if results for only one test have been submitted.

On October 12, with Governor Ige’s concurrence, Mayor Kawakami issued Mayor’s Emergency Rule #19, which implements Business and Recreational Guidelines based on four tiers dependent on the level of COVID-19 transmission within the County. Specific rules govern indoor and outdoor social gatherings, businesses, operations, and activities based on the applicable tier. All persons five years of age and older are required to wear a face covering whether indoors or outdoors, in any setting in which they are in within 6 feet of people who don’t live in their immediate household. Limited exceptions exist for those who can prove they fall under an excepted category of persons, by a preponderance of the evidence. The Rule further provides that if the 7-day average of reported daily COVID-19 cases reaches 5 or more for one week, the County shall submit a rule which revokes the negative test exception established by Governor Ige’s Proclamation.

(Honolulu City and County): With Governor Ige’s approval, Mayor Caldwell issued Emergency Order No. 2020-28, which imposes a 50% occupancy limit on vehicles or planes used by tours and skydiving operators. Attached to the order as an exhibit is an Amended “Honolulu’s COVID-19 Reopening Framework.”

(Hawaii County): With Governor Ige’s concurrence, Mayor Kim issued an Amendment to Mayor’s Emergency Rule No. 12, which implements testing requirements for transpacific and interisland travelers, subject to the State’s negative test exception. The Amendment is effective from October 15, 2020 to October 31, 2020.

(Maui County): Mayor Victorino issued Amended Public Health Emergency Rules, which add to the list of persons excepted from the self-quarantine requirement, persons who are not subject to any quarantine and who travel outside the County solely for medical purposes, provided the travel is same day or overnight only.

Iowa:

On October 15, the Iowa Economic Development Authority (IEDA) awarded $925,000 in Main Street Iowa Challenge Grants to 14 Iowa communities, ranging from $17,800 to $75,000 per grant. Grant recipients must match the amount received at least dollar-for-dollar. The grants are administered through IEDA’s Iowa Downtown Resource Center and Main Street Iowa programs and will benefit local improvement projects, including total building rehabilitations, upper story housing renovations and façade restorations.

New Jersey:

Governor Murphy signed Executive Order No. 189 on October 15, which extends the 2019 Corporate Business Tax calendar year returns deadline to November 16, 2020. The previous extension for the Corporate Business Tax returns expired on October 15.

Governor Murphy also announced an extension of the moratorium preventing New Jersey residents from having their utilities disconnected through at least March 15, 2021. The utility companies are not allowed to collect any late fees from residential customers. This moratorium applies to all residential gas, electric, and water utilities and requires all residential services that were disconnected after March 16, 2020 to be reconnected. Additionally, the Governor announced $15 million to assisting low income households in paying off utility bills.

Executive Order No. 190 also extended the Internet disconnection moratorium to November 15, 2020. This order prohibits cable and telecommunications providers from disconnecting Internet services in households that have one or more school-age children using the Internet for educational purposes. Additionally, late fees on residential utility and Internet customers are prohibited.

New York:

Governor Cuomo signed Executive Order No. 202.69 re-imposing the state requirement for annual safety inspections and at least biennial emissions inspections for vehicles, as of November 3, 2020.

(New York City): Mayor Bill de Blasio, of New York City, announced winter outdoor dining guidance in Executive Order No. 153. This order provides the guidance for city restaurants who plan to stay open and serve customers with outdoor heating devices this fall and winter. Restaurants wanting to provide heating for their customers have three options: (1) electric radiant heaters allowed in sidewalk and roadway setups; (2) natural gas radiant heaters allowed for sidewalk setups only, and (3) portable heaters fueled by propane will also be allowed on sidewalks. Business owners should consult http://www.nyc.gov/CovidZone for more information.

North Carolina:

On October 15, Governor Roy Cooper announced that applications are now being accepted for the N.C. Housing Opportunities and Prevention of Evictions (HOPE) Program, which will assist eligible low- and- moderate-income renters experiencing financial hardship due to COVID-19. The new program seeks to promote housing stability during the ongoing pandemic by providing rent and utility assistance to prevent evictions and utility disconnections.

The HOPE Program will provide $117 million for rent and utility assistance for renters who have been affected by the coronavirus pandemic, have a current household income that is 80% of the area median income or lower, and are behind on their rent or utilities when they apply.

Renters who need rent or utility assistance can apply online at nc211.org/hope. Applicants who cannot access the online application can also call 2-1-1 and speak with a program representative, who will assist the caller through the application on the phone. Callers can reach 2-1-1 Monday-Friday between 7:00 a.m. and 6:00 p.m.

Renters can apply for utility assistance, rent assistance or both programs. Rent assistance is paid to the landlord on behalf of the applicant. This includes overdue and future rent payments, for up to six months. At least one month’s rent must be overdue at the time of application.

Utility payments will be made directly to the utility provider for up to six months of past due essential utilities, such as electricity, water, sewer/wastewater, natural gas and propane. For more information about the HOPE Program, visit nc211.org/hope.

North Dakota:

On October 14, Governor Burgum announced updates to the ND Smart Restart guidelines to help reverse the trend of rising COVID-19 cases and reduce the spread of coronavirus in communities. Effective 5:00 p.m. Friday, October 16, the updated ND Smart Restart guidelines are as follows for counties under these risk designations:

  • Critical (red): Non-essential businesses closed;
  • High (orange): 25% occupancy with a cap of 50 people (changed from non-essential businesses closed); encourage businesses to require face coverings;
  • Moderate (yellow): 50% occupancy with a cap of 100 people (down from 250), encourage businesses to require face coverings;
  • Low (green): 75% occupancy with a cap of 200 people (down from 500); and
  • New Normal (blue): operate as usual.

The updated ND risk-level map is available here. Other important notes related to Governor Burgum’s announcement include the following details:

  • 16 counties are being moved into the high-risk (orange) level, which now recommends reduced occupancy rather than business closures.
  • Nine counties are moving from low risk to moderate risk, and two are moving from the new normal to low risk.
  • The changes to county risk levels are specific to large gatherings and businesses, not the instructional model within K-12 schools.
  • Larger indoor and outdoor gatherings are permitted if approved by community leaders and the local health authority; however:
    • community leaders may require event planners to submit a logistics and emergency operations plan to their local health authority no later than 30 days prior to the event; and
    • the ND Smart Restart recommendations are intended to supplement and not replace local requirements.

Ohio:

On October 15, Governor Mike DeWine held a press conference to address the recent surge in COVID-19 cases in Ohio. Ohio set a new record high for coronavirus cases October 15, marking the second day in a row the state hit a new high and the third time in less than a week. A record 29 counties are now under a red Level 3 COVID-19 public health advisory. More than 65% of Ohioans now live in a red county, Governor DeWine said. Franklin County, which had been at an orange Level 2 alert, was elevated Thursday to a red Level 3. Union, Licking, Madison, Marion and Fayette are also now under a red Level 3 advisory while Delaware, Pickaway and Fairfield counties are under an orange Level 2 advisory.

Governor DeWine said that he has no plans to shut down Ohio's economy again to slow the spread of coronavirus. But DeWine said no governor could rule out such a move if things worsen.

Next week, the Governor said his administration hopes to announce some sort of financial support to help bars and restaurants that have been impacted by the state's 10:00 p.m. curfew on alcohol sales for in-person consumption. Governor DeWine's announcement came after the Ohio Senate introduced a bill that would seek to scale back curfews. Governor DeWine said he had hoped to ask the state Liquor Control Commission to lift the last-call curfew but said recent increases in cases makes that unlikely.

Also on Thursday, Ohio State University announced that it will begin operating its own laboratory to process COVID-19 tests taken by asymptomatic students, faculty and staff. The lab will launch operations this fall. Ohio State will be able to lower the cost per test by around 85%, allowing the university to potentially save millions of dollars, according to campus officials. Turnaround time on tests may also be shortened from 48 to 72 hours to get results to as little as 24 hours, according to the university.

Furthermore, the state of Ohio has issued a travel advisory for certain states, including the neighboring state of Indiana. Under the advisory, those entering Ohio after travel to states reporting positive testing rates of 15% or higher for COVID-19 are advised to self-quarantine for 14 days. The list of states will be updated every week on Wednesday. Based on a 7-day rolling average of positivity rates of October 14, the current affected states are:

  • SD: 23.6%
  • ID: 23.5%
  • WI: 21.1%
  • IA: 18.8%
  • WY: 16.7%
  • KS: 16.6%
  • NV: 15.7%
  • IN: 15.6%
  • Note: The state of Mississippi is shaded gray this week on the Travel Advisory Map. Mississippi is showing reporting irregularities with the data for total tests reported in the past week. As such, the positivity rate cannot be calculated for Mississippi for this week.

Those who live in Indiana but may work in Ohio, or vice versa, are exempt. “This does not apply to persons who as a part of their normal life live in one state and work or deliver services in another state,” the order says.

Oregon:

On October 9, the Oregon Department of Consumer and Business Services reminded the Oregon workforce that it is still taking applications for a new program that helps people who work in Oregon and need to quarantine or isolate due to COVID-19 exposure, but do not have access to COVID-19-related paid sick leave. People who qualify will receive a $120 per-day payment for up to 10 working days ($1,200 total) for the time they need to quarantine. You must meet all of the following requirements to be eligible for the program:

  • Work in Oregon and required to file an Oregon personal income tax return.
  • Directed to quarantine by a local or tribal public health authority or health care provider because of exposure to someone infected, or isolating because you have COVID-19-related symptoms and are seeking a medical diagnosis.
  • Not able to work (including telework) because you need to quarantine or isolate.
  • Do not expect to earn more than $60,000 individually or $120,000 jointly in 2020.
  • Your employer does not provide COVID-19-related paid sick leave or you have exhausted your available COVID-19-related paid sick leave.
  • Are not applying for or receiving unemployment insurance benefits for the time off due to quarantine or isolation.
  • Are not applying for or receiving workers’ compensation claim benefits due to quarantine or isolation.
  • Are not seeking or using benefits from similar COVID-19 quarantine relief programs in Oregon or another state.
  • Are not applying for or receiving other forms of paid leave from your employer during your quarantine or isolation, such as banked sick leave or vacation leave.
  • Are not laid off or furloughed by your employer.
  • Must have notified your employer that you need to quarantine or isolate.

Because the available funds are limited, the program is available only to quarantine periods that were in place on or after September 16. Applicants can claim only one quarantine period. Employees can apply online for the COVID-19 Temporary Paid Leave Program at www.oregon.gov/covidpaidleave. The application form is available in English, Spanish, and Russian. Those who do not have access to electronic applications can call 833-685-0850 (toll-free) or 503-947-0130. Those who need help in a language other than these three can call 503-947-0131 for help.

On October 9, Governor Brown announced that Umatilla County has been added to the County Watch List. This addition comes after Umatilla County was removed from the Watch List on September 18. The county remains in Phase 2 of reopening. The complete County Watch List now includes the following four counties: Benton, Clatsop, Malheur, and Umatilla.

Washington:

On October 13, Governor 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 has been created to help strengthen the state’s recovery efforts. The new group will help state agencies coordinate with local governments, higher education and the private sector. State agency experts will work with local stakeholders and tribal partners to implement recovery solutions and pathways. Those ideas and policy solutions will be presented to cabinet agencies and the Office of Financial Management. The areas of focus include:

  • Community and social services;
  • Education and childcare;
  • Employment and jobs;
  • Equity and social justice;
  • Health and healthcare;
  • Housing;
  • Infrastructure and energy; and
  • Support for small business.

The Washington Recovery Group will be housed at the Office of Financial Management, which will partner with the Emergency Management Division of the state’s Military Department. The WRG, led by Dan McConnon, is scheduled to hold its first meeting later this month.

On October 14, Governor Inslee announced extensions of the eviction moratorium and public utility proclamations. Both proclamations were extended to December 31.

Moratorium on Evictions (20-19.4) (See full Proclamation here)

This extension makes modifications to the prior moratorium, including:

  • Clarifying that tenant behavior which is imminently hazardous to the physical safety of other persons on the premises is included among the existing permissible reasons for seeking to evict a tenant.
  • Authorizing landlords and property owners to send advance notices of future rent increases in limited circumstances, as long as the notice clearly provides that the rent increase will not go into effect until after the moratorium expires.
  • Establishing clearer guidance on permissible communications between landlords and tenants.
  • Requiring that any 60-day notice to vacate if an owner intends to occupy or sell the premises must be in the form of an affidavit signed under penalty of perjury.
  • The moratorium also directs the governor’s staff to continue working with stakeholders over the next 30 days to consider additional amendments to the moratorium to ensure that the moratorium’s protections for non-payment of rent apply narrowly to those persons whose ability to pay has been directly or indirectly materially impacted by the COVID-19 virus.

Ratepayer Assistance (20-23.11) (See full Proclamation here)

This proclamation prohibits energy, water and landline telephone companies from:

  • Disconnecting any residential customers from energy, landline telephone or water service due to nonpayment on an active account, except at the request of the customer.
  • Refusing to reconnect any residential customer who has been disconnected due to nonpayment.
  • Charging fees for late payment or reconnection of energy, landline telephone or water service.
  • Disconnecting service to any residential customer who has contacted the utility to request assistance from the utility’s COVID-19 Customer Support Program.
  • This proclamation does not relieve customers from the obligation to pay for utility services. Customers and utilities are expected to continue to communicate in good faith with one another, and to work together, on the timing and terms of payment and repayment solutions.

Back to the top | View the Aggregated List of Daily Updates

Key contacts:
 

Catherine Hanaway, Partner, Technology, Manufacturing & Transportation, St. Louis, MO.
Seth Mailhot, Partner, Food & Agribusiness, Washington, DC.
Lowell Pearson, Partner, Technology, Manufacturing & Transportation, Jefferson City, MO.
Steve Laabs, Partner, Financial Services & Capital Markets, Milwaukee, WI.
Wendy Proctor, Partner, Real Estate, Development & Construction, Chattanooga, TN.
Kirstin Salzman, Partner, Healthcare, Life Sciences & Education, Kansas City, MO. 
Donna Pryor, Partner, Energy & Natural Resources, Denver, CO. 
Kyle Gilster, Partner, Financial Services & Capital Markets, Washington, DC.
Natalie Holden, Associate, Litigation & Alternative Dispute Resolution, Kansas City, MO
David Lopez, Senior Associate, Real Estate, Development & Construction, Omaha, NE


The COVID-19 situation is fluid and fast-changing at all levels of government. New orders, regulations, restrictions, and guidance are being issued by federal, state, and local governments on a daily basis. Husch Blackwell LLP does not guarantee the accuracy or timeliness of the information contained herein. You should consult directly with counsel for the latest developments.

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