Author

Joel Williams

Joel Williams is a staff writer at Ballotpedia and can be reached at joel.williams@ballotpedia.org

Florida to open bars, bowling alleys, and movie theaters

Today, Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis (R) announced that starting June 5, bars will be able to reopen at 50% capacity inside and full capacity outside, with service only for seated patrons. Movie theaters and bowling alleys will also be permitted reopen at 50% capacity the same day. These new rules will apply to all counties in the state except Miami-Dade, Broward, and Palm Beach.

Florida began its phased reopening in late April, with the above three South Florida counties excluded due to heightened positive coronavirus case rates and hospitalizations. Each of those counties has since been granted permission by the governor to reopen at a slower rate than the rest of the state.



Arizona schools set to reopen in the fall

Arizona Gov. Doug Ducey (R) announced that schools in the state would reopen for in-person instruction in the fall. No firm start date was provided, but Ducey said the state would release guidelines for schools on June 1. Schools in the state have been closed to in-person instruction since March 15.

Forty-eight states were closed schools to in-person instruction for the remainder of the academic year. Those states account for 99.4% of the 50.6 million public school students in the country. The two states to not close schools to in-person instruction for the remainder of the academic year are Montana and Wyoming.



Wyoming’s statewide school closure expires today

Schools in Wyoming may begin reopening to in-person instruction on Monday after a statewide order expired today. The decision to reopen will be left up to local school authorities. Laramie County School District #1, the state’s largest, already announced it would continue distance learning. The school year is scheduled to end in Wyoming on May 28, and schools have been closed to in-person instruction since March 23.

Forty-eight states have closed schools to in-person instruction for the remainder of the academic year. Those states account for 99.4% of the 50.6 million public school students in the country. The two states to not close schools to in-person instruction for the remainder of the academic year are Montana and Wyoming.



Three stay-at-home orders set to expire tomorrow

Stay-at-home orders in North Carolina, Pennsylvania, and Rhode Island are set to expire tomorrow. So far, 15 states that were previously under stay-at-home orders let those orders expire. Another seven states never implemented stay-at-home orders.

After these orders expire, the states with the next expiring orders are Arizona, Delaware, Louisiana, Michigan, Nevada, New Mexico, New York, and Vermont on May 15.

Although the orders vary from state to state, they include at least two common elements: the closure or curtailment of nonessential businesses in the state and requiring all residents to stay home except for essential trips for supplies or outdoor exercise.


Connecticut closes schools to in-person instruction for the remainder of the year

Connecticut Gov. Ned Lamont (D) announced that schools in the state would remain closed to in-person instruction for the remainder of the 2019-2020 academic year. Prior to the announcement, schools in the state were closed to in-person instruction through May 20.
Forty-seven states have closed schools to in-person instruction for the remainder of the academic year. Those states account for 97.6% of the 50.6 million public school students in the country. The three states that have not are: Maryland, Montana, and Wyoming.
Of the three states that have not announced that schools will close for the remainder of the year, one has a Republican trifecta and two have divided governments.


North Dakota closes schools to in-person instruction for the remainder of the year

On Friday afternoon, North Dakota Gov. Doug Burgum (R) announced that schools in the state would remain closed to in-person instruction for the remainder of the 2019-2020 academic year. Prior to the announcement, schools in the state had been closed to in-person instruction indefinitely since March 16.

Forty-five states have closed schools to in-person instruction for the remainder of the academic year. Those states account for 93.4% of the 50.6 million public school students in the country. The five states that have not are Connecticut, Maryland, Montana, New Jersey, and Wyoming.

Of the five states that have not announced that schools will close for the remainder of the year, two have Democratic trifectas, one has a Republican trifecta, and two have divided governments.


Arizona extends stay-at-home order

Arizona Gov. Doug Ducey (R) announced that the state’s stay-at-home order, scheduled to end on April 30, was extended until May 15. Residents have been under a stay-at-home order since March 31. Before the extension, Arizona was one of nine states whose order was set to expire on April 30.

Ducey also announced that several nonessential retail businesses could begin providing drive-thru services on May 4. State parks, golf courses, and postal services will also be allowed to open on that date. Beginning May 8, those same businesses can begin offering in-store services as long as social distancing requirements are met.

Ballotpedia is providing comprehensive coverage on how the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic is affecting America’s political and civic life. Our coverage includes how federal, state, and local governments are responding, and the effects those responses are having on campaigns and elections.


Rhode Island schools closed to in-person instruction for rest of academic year

On Thursday afternoon, Rhode Island Gov. Gina Raimondo (D) announced that schools across the state would remain closed to in-person instruction for the rest of the academic year. Prior to the announcement, schools in the state were scheduled to be closed through April 30.

Rhode Island became the 41st state in the country to close schools to in-person instruction for the rest of the academic year. So far this week, eight other states have also announced year-end closures. The 41 states with year-end closures account for 84.8% of the 50.6 million public school students in the country.

Of the nine states that have not announced that schools will for the remainder of the year, four have Democratic trifectas, two have Republican trifectas, and three have divided governments.

Ballotpedia is providing comprehensive coverage on how the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic is affecting America’s political and civic life. Our coverage includes how federal, state, and local governments are responding, and the effects those responses are having on campaigns and elections.



President Trump signs order suspending the issuance of green cards

On Wednesday night, President Donald Trump (R) signed an executive order suspending the issuance of green cards. The order only applies to individuals outside the country at the time of the order. The order is set to last for 60 days, though Trump said he could also modify the order during the 60 days.

The order includes exceptions for the following groups: essential workers, medical personnel, spouses and children of U.S. citizens, members of the Armed Forces, prospective adoptees of U.S. citizens, and seasonal farmworkers. It also does not apply to individuals residing in the United States seeking to change their immigration status.

Ballotpedia is providing comprehensive coverage on how the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic is affecting America’s political and civic life. Our coverage includes how federal, state, and local governments are responding, and the effects those responses are having on campaigns and elections.



Montana announces plans to lift stay-at-home order

Gov. Steve Bullock (D) announced that the state’s stay-at-home order would be lifted effective April 26. Bullock first issued a stay-at-home order on March 26 (effective date March 28) and extended it to April 24 on April 7. Schools in the state had been closed to in-person instruction since March 16.

Bullock said that places of worship could open on April 26 as long as physical distancing was practiced. Retail stores will be allowed to open with physical distancing practices on April 27, and bars and restaurants will re-open with limited capacity beginning May 4. Bullock also said he would rescind the statewide school closure order on May 7, but individual districts would be allowed to decide whether to reopen for in-person instruction.

Ballotpedia is providing comprehensive coverage on how the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic is affecting America’s political and civic life. Our coverage includes how federal, state, and local governments are responding, and the effects those responses are having on campaigns and elections.



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