Connecting state and local government leaders
STATE AND LOCAL NEWS ROUNDUP | Montana starts grants for live entertainment venues … An elected police commissioner in Detroit sues police department … Bald eagle takes down a drone.
Seven people returning to Connecticut after visiting states with high Covid-19 case counts were fined $1,000 after they failed to file a required travel advisory form with the state health department. “This is for real," said Josh Geballe, the chief operating officer for Gov. Ned Lamont. "We need people to follow these rules. We need people to comply. This is one of the riskiest areas for the state of Connecticut right now as people travel into this state, bringing the virus with them.” Along with filling out the form and filing it, the state is requiring people who travel from one of 32 states and two territories to quarantine for 14 days after arriving in Connecticut. This applies both to residents and out-of-state visitors. One resident received an additional $1,000 fine because they refused to self-quarantine after coming back to the state. [Hartford Courant; CT Mirror; USA Today]
LIVE ENTERTAINMENT | Montana Gov. Steve Bullock announced a $10 million grant fund to help live entertainment venues weather the pandemic. “Live entertainment businesses that bring together large groups of Montanans and visitors have had to cancel or postpone all of their events during the pandemic … This funding will offer support to the hundreds of workers employed in the live entertainment industry and provide long term support to businesses to ensure they can resume offering events that are fundamental to our quality of life, as soon as it’s safe to do so,” he said. [NBC Montana]
SUING DETROIT | A Detroit police commissioner is suing the city and police department for his arrest last year at a police commissioners’ meeting where he spoke against the use of facial recognition technology. Willie Burton, the police commissioner from the 5th District in Detroit, alleges that he was unjustly arrested and suffered a concussion when he was removed from the meeting. "If this is how the police treat a duly elected police commissioner while the public is watching, one can only imagine the treatment the average citizen can expect to receive at the hands of Detroit Police when the cameras are not rolling," said Burton’s attorney. [FOX 2]
RENT RELIEF | Los Angeles County announced a $100 million rent relief program with applications open through the end of August. The money is not available to residents of the City of Los Angeles, as the city has a separate program. [KHTS]
EAGLE DRONE ATTACK | A bald eagle took down a $950 drone owned by the state of Michigan, ripping off one of its propellers and sending it plummeting into Lake Michigan. The drone was being flown in the Upper Peninsula to document shoreline erosion. The agency that was using the drone? EGLE, or Department of Environment, Great Lakes, and Energy. “The attack could have been a territorial squabble with the electronic foe, or just a hungry eagle. Or maybe it did not like its name being misspelled,” a news release quipped. “EGLE’s drone team is considering steps to reduce the possibility of a repeat attack, including possibly using ‘skins’ or other designs on the aircraft to make them look less like seagulls.” [MLive]
Laura Maggi is the managing editor of Route Fifty and Emma Coleman is the assistant editor.