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

By Jeannie O'Sullivan · December 1, 2020, 6:31 PM EST

Delaware's top emergency management director is the latest public official to test positive for COVID-19 as cases surge, keeping state leaders busy with mitigation measures even over the holiday weekend.

New Jersey tackled the uptick in cases with new restrictions on outdoor gatherings and youth sports, while Pennsylvania extended testing and New York unveiled a targeted mitigation plan for the winter months. The Empire State also joined a chorus of concerned voices calling on the federal government to ensure underserved communities have access to a vaccine.

Elsewhere, help for pandemic-weary businesses and residents is on the way in the form of tax relief in California and funding for disaster relief jobs in Florida.

Here's a breakdown of some 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
Citing a lack of federal stimulus funds for small businesses, Gov. Gavin Newsom said Monday that the state will provide temporary tax relief for eligible companies affected by coronavirus restrictions. Taxpayers filing less than $1 million in sales tax will get a three-month income tax extension. The relief also extends existing interest and penalty-free payment arrangements to companies with up to $5 million in taxable sales.

Delaware
Delaware Emergency Management Agency Director AJ Schall tested positive for COVID-19 on Nov. 27 after he experienced minor, cold-like symptoms on Nov. 25, Gov. John Carney announced Saturday. Both Schall and one of his sons tested negative on Monday. Schall is at home in isolation and remains in contact with state officials.

Florida
The state has been awarded $28 million in federal funding to provide disaster relief employment to those laid off from jobs due to the pandemic, Gov. Ron DeSantis said Tuesday. The U.S. Department of Labor's Disaster Recovery Dislocated Worker Grant will fund positions in the areas of food distribution, quarantine setup and cleansing and sanitation.

New Jersey
Gov. Phil Murphy on Monday signed an executive order slashing the number of people allowed to gather outdoors starting Dec. 7 from 150 to 25 people, with exceptions for weddings, funerals and memorial services, and religious and political activities. The order also paused all indoor youth sports from Dec. 5 to Jan. 2 and specified that the 10-person limit for indoor gatherings does not apply to addiction support groups, which are capped at 25% room capacity.

New York
Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo joined a coalition of groups Tuesday in urging U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Secretary Alex Azar to ensure that underserved communities and unauthorized immigrants are included in the coronavirus vaccination program. The current plan doesn't provide states adequate funding to serve these populations, Cuomo and others wrote.

On Monday, Cuomo unveiled a five-prong plan to mitigate the impact of the coronavirus in the state during the winter months. The plan addressed hospital capacity, testing resources, school operation, gathering rules and vaccination.

Also on Monday, Cuomo announced that $6.7 million in Coronavirus Aid Relief and Economic Security, or CARES, Act funding is available to help the state's marine fishing industry recoup economic losses due to the pandemic.

Pennsylvania
Gov. Tom Wolf on Tuesday announced that the commonwealth was extending its contract with AMI Expeditionary Healthcare to provide COVID-19 testing in five regions for another 12 weeks.

Wolf on Monday vetoed a bill that would limit pandemic-related civil liability for manufacturers, distributors and other businesses, saying that the immunity was "overly broad" and undermined mitigation efforts.

Also on Monday, Wolf said the commonwealth awarded $3 million in CARES Act funding to 15 municipalities and organizations to assist homeless residents during the pandemic.

--Editing by Alanna Weissman.

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