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Coronavirus Regulations: A State-By-State Week In Review

By Jeannie O'Sullivan · May 11, 2021, 4:39 PM EDT

COVID-19 relief efforts took the form of cash influxes announced over the past week in several states, including a $100 billion "comeback plan" for California's economy and $235 million in relief funding for small businesses in New Jersey.

Financial help is also in store for Massachusetts businesses, which will get $4.8 million as part of a final round of grants from a state program, and for Florida first responders, who will get one-time pandemic relief bonuses of $1,000.

In vaccination developments, New York's state university system will require proof of immunization for students returning to in-person classes this fall, and Texas is launching an effort to connect businesses and organizations with mobile vaccination teams.

Here is a breakdown of some of the COVID-19-related state measures from the past week.

Click for state-by-state data on COVID-19 legislation and executive orders, powered by LexisNexis.

 
California

Gov. Gavin Newsom on Monday previewed the $100 billion "California Comeback Plan," an initiative that will provide nearly $12 billion in direct cash payments to residents struggling financially during the pandemic. The effort is touted as the biggest economic recovery plan in the state's history.

Delaware

Citing dwindling response, health officials said Thursday that the state is ending its vaccination waiting list and instead will focus on updating the public with immunization opportunities throughout the state.

Gov. John Carney on May 4 announced that capacity restrictions on restaurants, retailers, other businesses and houses of worship will be completely lifted as of May 21 and that social distancing space will be reduced from 6 feet to 3 feet. Masks will still be required indoors.

Florida

Gov. Ron DeSantis announced May 5 that first responders, including emergency medical technicians, firefighters, law enforcement officers and paramedics, will get a $1,000 one-time pandemic bonus.

Illinois

Gov. J.B. Pritzker on Monday unveiled a new program to vaccinate office building employees at work. The onsite immunizations will launch at 10 sites in Chicago, Schaumburg and Rockford.

Pritzker said May 5 that the state will deploy additional rural rapid response vaccination teams to Lawrence, Macon and Fulton counties.

The annual Chicago Auto Show will return in July at the McCormick Place convention center following the postponement of last year's event because of the pandemic, Pritzker said May 4. As a pandemic safety measure, a portion of the show will be held outdoors for the first time since it debuted in 1901.

Massachusetts

In an announcement Thursday, Gov. Charlie Baker, Lt. Gov. Karyn Polito, Housing and Economic Development Secretary Mike Kennealy and other dignitaries announced the final round of pandemic relief grants from the Massachusetts Growth Capital Corporation, totaling $4.8 million, to 108 businesses. The program has given out a total of $687.2 million in direct cash grants.

New Jersey

Gov. Phil Murphy on Friday announced that an additional $235 million in coronavirus relief funding is available to small businesses through the New Jersey Economic Development Authority.

On May 5, Murphy conditionally vetoed a measure to create a Coronavirus Disease (COVID-19) Pandemic Task Force on Racial and Health Disparities, saying the group should expand its membership to include representation of the state's Division on Civil Rights and the Division of Consumer Affairs.

New York

Students attending in-person classes this fall at State University of New York and City University of New York campuses will need proof of vaccination, Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo said Monday.

Also on Monday, Cuomo said he wants to propose a law that prohibits discrimination against people who have been vaccinated. He cited "a situation with summer camps saying if you are vaccinated, you cannot go to that camp. If you're vaccinated, you can't be a staff member at that camp."

Pennsylvania

Gov. Tom Wolf announced on May 5 that four Department of Human Services employees were recipients of the Governor's Awards for Excellence for the creation and operation of a program that helps prepare long-term care facilities for coronavirus outbreaks.

Texas

Gov. Greg Abbott on May 6 announced the launch of a call center to connect businesses and organizations with mobile vaccination teams.  

--Editing by Jill Coffey.

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