Documenting America’s Path to Recovery: December 30, 2020 #Edition #155

Welcome to Documenting America’s Path to Recovery. During this period of rapid change as states issue new restrictions, we are committed to keeping you updated on everything from mask requirements to curfews to vaccine-related policies. We will keep you abreast of major developments—especially those affecting your daily life. Today we look at vaccine distribution in Arizona and Kentucky, a pandemic relief bill in Michigan, and much more. Want to know what we covered Wednesday, Dec. 23? Click here.

Since our last edition

What rules and restrictions are changing in each state? For a continually updated article, click here.

  • Arizona (Republican trifecta): Gov. Doug Ducey (R) announced individuals age 75 and older will be eligible to receive coronavirus vaccines in phase 1B of the state’s distribution plan. School staff and first responders are also included in the phase, which is expected to start in mid- to late Jan. 2021. 
  • California (Democratic trifecta): Health and Human Services Secretary Dr. Mark Ghaly extended the stay-at-home orders for the Southern California and San Joaquin Valley regions through at least Jan. 16, 2021. Stay-at-home orders are still effective through at least Jan. 1 in the Greater Sacramento region and through at least Jan. 7 in the Bay Area region.
  • Indiana (Republican trifecta): On Dec. 23, Gov. Eric Holcomb (R) extended an order that temporarily allows healthcare students and out-of-state healthcare professionals to work in Indiana without a state license. 
  • Kentucky (divided government): Gov. Andy Beshear (D) announced school staff, first responders, and anyone older than 70 will be eligible to receive coronavirus vaccines in Phase 1b of the state’s distribution plan. The state expects to start Phase 1b at the beginning of February. 
  • Michigan (divided government): On Dec. 29, Gov. Gretchen Whitmer (D) signed a $106 million bill that includes aid to small businesses, music and entertainment venues, and workers who’ve been laid off or furloughed. Whitmer also signed a bill extending unemployment benefits from 20 to 26 weeks. 
  • New York (Democratic trifecta): Gov. Andrew Cuomo (D) announced updated requirements for individuals with known exposure to the coronavirus. Exposed individuals have to self-quarantine for 10 days if they do not experience any symptoms, down from 14 days under the previous rule.
  • Oregon (Democratic trifecta): Gov. Kate Brown (D) announced that effective Jan. 1-14, 24 counties will be in the state’s Extreme Risk level, five will be at High Risk, and seven counties will have Lower Risk restrictions. To see restrictions in a specific county or risk level, click here. Brown also announced the state’s school reopening metrics, which determine when schools may open, will be advisory instead of mandatory starting Jan. 1, 2021. 

Additional activity

In this section, we feature examples of other federal, state, and local government activity, private industry responses, and lawsuits related to the pandemic. 

  • On Dec. 29, U.S. Representative-elect Luke Letlow (R) died of complications related to COVID-19. He announced he tested positive for the virus on Dec. 19. Letlow won in the general election for Louisiana’s Fifth Congressional District on Dec. 5 and was scheduled to be sworn into office on Jan. 3, 2021.