Weekly COVID-19 News for State and Local Leaders

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Welcome to our weekly roundup of articles and resources for state and local leaders creating policy to help combat the COVID-19 pandemic as well as steering the social and economic recovery for their communities. Postings below do not convey endorsement of any particular organization or opinion contained in links.

July 29, 2020

Bringing together local farmers, local restaurants, and local food.

Now it’s time for civic innovators to catch their breath and take stock of all they’ve achieved — and how it’s moved their cities forward.

Pooled testing, which can make one coronavirus test as powerful as five, is particularly useful when the infection rate is low. Its use could free up more tests for places where the virus is more widespread.

Urban heat islands can be 22 degrees hotter than their surroundings.

The Housing and Urban Development Department would be required to set up and secure a new, central resource.

Many residents are struggling to pay utility bills during the pandemic, dealing with escalating balances. But local relief programs aren’t designed to help everybody.

Alphabet Inc.’s Google will let employees work from home until July 2021, once again pushing back the re-opening of its offices as the coronavirus continues to rage in many parts of the U.S.

Two adjacent communities underscore the starkly divergent ways in which the coronavirus outbreak in Texas has attacked daily life.

July 22, 2020

Legislation before the New Jersey legislature would use federal coronavirus relief funds to reimburse restaurants, caterers and bars for preparations to resume in-person dining before it was canceled by the governor.

Without plastic shielding between seats or more efficient engines, the environmental benefits of public transport are lost.

As bike lanes and cafes sprout on streets, marginalized residents wonder when their priorities will get attention.

The hard-up find it hardest

The southern California city of El Cajon moved to paperless permitting in just under a month, a project that had originally been expected to take a year.

Residents successfully pressured the city to request the state to cancel rent for Ithaca residents. What lessons can be learned from local organizers?

Uruguay may be best known for beaches and beef. But the country has seen just 1,000 or so cases since the pandemic began, and only 33 deaths. may have as much to do with its policies from years past, as its present day virus response.

Several large U.S. healthcare systems have teamed with Google and SADA to establish an open data platform to provide hospitals and government officials granular views of ICU and ventilator utilization at the local level.

Cities are enforcing capacity restrictions at cooling centers and offering free air conditioners as a way to beat the heat.

The number of Black-owned small businesses dropped 41% between February and April.



A resource center, curated by the Ash Center at Harvard Kennedy School, for public sector practitioners to highlight cases, teaching, policy solutions, and other examples of how governments are responding to the outbreak

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Harvard Ash Center

Research center and think tank at Harvard Kennedy School. Here to talk about democracy, government innovation, and Asia public policy.