Coronavirus

Boosting Covid-19 Vaccinations with $1 million Prizes, Free Crawfish, Hunting Licenses and More

Along with businesses, state and local governments are offering a growing variety of perks to get residents hesitant about the shots to roll up their sleeves.

Can Schools Require Covid-19 Vaccines for Students Now that Pfizer’s Shot is Authorized for Kids 12 and Up?

COMMENTARY | The Food and Drug Administration on May 10, 2021, granted the first emergency use authorization of a COVID-19 vaccine for adolescents.

The Cities and Counties Getting the Biggest Sums of Federal Aid

The Treasury Department will begin distributing $350 billion in state and local pandemic recovery money this month. Funding for individual localities ranges widely between places, from thousands of dollars up into the billions.

New Mexico Must Provide Internet, Devices to At-Risk Remote Learners, Court Rules

The ruling is the latest development in a years-long case alleging that the state’s education department failed to provide uniform public education to Native Americans, low-income children and others.

Treasury to Begin Distribution of $350 Billion for State, Local Governments

The guidance released Monday gives governments wide latitude in spending American Rescue Plan funds.

GOP Governors Move to End Pandemic Unemployment Benefits

The state-level action mirrors a national debate over whether expanded jobless benefits are driving a workforce shortage.

States, Cities Begin to Order Workers Back to the Office

The ACLU is challenging a directive from South Carolina’s governor that requires state employees to return to in-person work. Other state and local orders are under fire as well.

Covid Testing Has Turned Into a Financial Windfall for Hospitals and Other Providers

Because there are no caps on cost, consumers and insurers often get billed hundreds of dollars for the most reliable PCR covid test. Prices are rising and they can’t fight back.

A $4.5B Pool of Economic Recovery Funds States, Localities Can Tap Into

The U.S. Economic Development Administration received an influx of Covid relief dollars over the past year that is more than 10 times the size of its usual budget. That money is now flowing as grants.

As Covid-19 Vaccine Demand Dips, Community Health Centers Take the Lead

Their mission is to close vaccination gaps between the most vulnerable and everyone else.

Federal Judge Vacates Nationwide Evictions Moratorium

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention did not have the authority to issue the ban last fall, which has shielded renters from eviction during the course of the coronavirus pandemic.

Texas’ Pandemic Budget Shortfall Disappears, as Latest Forecast Shows a Surplus

The latest revenue estimate doesn’t take into account all of the federal relief that has been sent to Texas over the past year by Congress through pandemic relief packages. State lawmakers have wrestled with how and who has the authority to spend that money.

Local Governments Expect to Embrace Some—But Not All—Technology Post-Pandemic, Survey Finds

Eighty-one percent of local leaders in The Atlas survey said they conducted board meetings virtually, but only 54% expect to continue the practice. Others, including digital permitting, community engagement and citizen requests, are likely here to stay.

Block of Three Northeast States Will Move Toward Reopening

Governors in New York, New Jersey and Connecticut plan to ease limits on businesses beginning May 19. States in other parts of the country have already gone further unwinding pandemic-era rules.

Millions Are Saying No to the Vaccines. What Are They Thinking?

COMMENTARY | Feelings about the vaccine are intertwined with feelings about the pandemic.

Cash for Jabs? Officials Look to Cash Perks to Boost Vaccine Uptake

West Virginia's governor announced a $100 incentive program this week. In Detroit, people can get a $50 debit card for driving someone to a vaccination site.

Counties at Highest Risk for Covid Harm Often Have Lowest Vaccination Rates

The vaccine rollout was meant to prioritize vulnerable communities, but four months of data shows healthier — and often wealthier — counties have been faster to vaccinate.

As Influx of Aid Nears, Some Spending Principles For States and Localities to Consider

Billions in federal coronavirus relief payments to states and localities are expected in May. Important choices lie ahead about how to best put the money to use.

2020 Census Data: Which States Gain, Lose Seats in the U.S. House?

The country experienced the second-slowest population growth in history, but resident shifts have seven states losing House seats, including California for the first time, and six capturing seats (two for Texas, the most).

In the Tales Told by Sewage, Public Health and Privacy Collide

Sewage epidemiology has been embraced in other countries for decades, but not in the U.S. Will Covid change that?