Documenting America’s Path to Recovery #273: June 24, 2021

Welcome to Documenting America’s Path to Recovery. Today we look at:

  • A new county risk level list in Oregon
  • Vaccine distribution
  • School closures and reopenings
  • Travel restrictions
  • Federal responses
  • COVID-19 policy changes from this time last year 

We are committed to keeping you updated on everything from mask requirements to vaccine-related policies. We will keep you abreast of major developments—especially those affecting your daily life. Want to know what we covered yesterday? Click here.

The next 24 hours

What is changing in the next 24 hours?

Oregon (Democratic trifecta): The final county Risk Level list will take effect June 25 until the state reaches a 70% first-dose vaccination rate for residents 18 and older. When 70% of adults receive at least one dose of a vaccine, the risk level framework will end. During the current period from June 18-25, nine counties are in the state’s High Risk level, five are at Moderate Risk, and 22 have Lower Risk restrictions. Effective June 25, six counties will be in the state’s High Risk level, seven will be at Moderate Risk, and 23 will have Lower Risk restrictions. To see restrictions in a specific county or risk level, click here.

Since our last edition

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

New York (Democratic trifecta): Gov. Andrew Cuomo (D) is ending the state’s coronavirus emergency order June 24. Masks are still required statewide for unvaccinated individuals. 

Vaccine distribution

We last looked at vaccine distribution in the June 22 edition of the newsletter. As of June 23, the states with the highest vaccination rates as a percentage of total population (including children) were:

The states with the lowest rates were:

School closures and reopenings

Read more: School responses to the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic during the 2020-2021 academic year

We last looked at school closures and reopenings on June 17. Since then, no states changed school reopening guidelines.


  • Two states (Del., Hawaii) and Washington, D.C. had state-ordered regional school closures, required closures for certain grade levels, or allowed hybrid instruction only.
    • 2016-17 enrollment: 403,664 students (0.80% of students nationwide)
  • Thirteen states had state-ordered in-person instruction.
    • 2016-17 enrollment: 15,432,755 students (30.51% of students nationwide)
  • One state (Ariz.) had state-ordered in-person instruction for certain grades.
    • 2016-17 enrollment: 1,123,137 students (2.22% of students nationwide)
  • Thirty-four states left decisions to schools or districts.
    • 2016-17 enrollment: 33,628,303 students (66.48% of students nationwide)

Travel restrictions

Read more: Travel restrictions issued by states in response to the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, 2020


  • Since the start of the pandemic, governors or state agencies in 27 states and the District of Columbia issued executive orders placing restrictions on out-of-state visitors. At least 24 of those orders have been rescinded. 
    • Since June 17, one state has changed its travel restrictions.  


  • Kansas – The Kansas Department of Health and Environment updated its travel quarantine list to include people who’ve traveled to or from Kuwait, Mongolia, or Saint Martin on or after June 17. 

Federal responses

Read more: Political responses to the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, 2020

  • On June 24, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) Director Rochelle Walensky extended a federal evictions moratorium through July 31. Walensky said she would not extend the moratorium beyond July 31.
  • On June 21, the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) extended restrictions on nonessential travel between Mexico and Canada through July 21.
  • On June 19, Department of State representative Ned Price announced the U.S. would send 2.5 million vaccine doses to Taiwan.

This time last year: Thursday, June 25, 2020

The first case of COVID-19 in the U.S. was confirmed on Jan. 21, 2020. But it wasn’t until March when the novel coronavirus upended life for most Americans. Throughout March and April, many states issued stay-at-home orders, closed schools, restricted travel, and changed election dates. Many of those policies remain in place today. Each week, we’ll look back at some of the defining policy responses of the early coronavirus pandemic.

Here’s what happened this time last year. To see a list of all policy changes in each category, click the links below.

Thursday, June 25, 2020:

  • Election changes:
    • Iowa Gov. Kim Reynolds (R) signed HF2486 into law, barring the secretary of state from mailing absentee ballot request forms to all voters without legislative approval. The legislation also barred county officials from decreasing the number of polling places more than 35 percent during an election.
    • A three-judge panel of the United States Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit declined to block a lower court order barring Alabama election officials from enforcing witness and photo ID requirements for select voters casting absentee ballots in the July 14 runoff elections.
  • Mask requirements:
    • A statewide mask mandate requiring individuals to wear face coverings in public took effect in Nevada. Gov. Steve Sisolak (D) issued the order June 24.