Local Economies

Filing for Unemployment Doesn’t Have to Be So Terrible

State unemployment systems were overwhelmed by filings during the pandemic. A new report lays out basic steps states can take to make the claims process easier for users.

Coronavirus Deal Remains Elusive as Senate Rejects Scaled-Down Bill

The back and forth negotiations over a broader Covid-19 stimulus package continued Wednesday with no firm agreements in place.

Local and State Governments Spent $9 Billion on Small Business Aid

As the economy cratered during the pandemic, local and state governments offered an important financial lifeline for small businesses, according to a new report.

One City's Pilot Program to Restart Live Entertainment

Six venues in Washington D.C. will be allowed to hold live performances under strict guidance and supervision from city officials.

Why States and Localities Should Increase—Not Decrease—Spending

COMMENTARY | State and local governments that cut public spending after the Great Recession fared worse than those that increased spending. Let’s not make the same mistake again.

Young People Fueling a Pandemic Rise in Freelancing, Report Says

A survey of American workers revealed that young people between ages 18 to 22 are increasingly picking up freelancing.

Covid Lockdowns Expose the Digital Have-Nots in Rural Areas—These Policies Can Get Them Connected

COMMENTARY | Fewer than 50% of rural residents in some states have a broadband connection available where they live.

California Legislature Passes 'Clean-Up' Bill to Allow Musicians and Other Freelancers to Continue Gig Work

STATE AND LOCAL NEWS ROUNDUP | Big kindergarten enrollment drop in Los Angeles … Mayor slammed for dining indoors in another state when not allowed in his city … New Jersey bill could allow police officers to take gunshot victims to hospital.

Senate Republicans’ Revamped, Scaled-Back Coronavirus Bill Expected Next Week

But Democrats and Republicans are still far apart on inclusion of money for state and local governments.

New Unemployment Benefits Could Take Weeks to Distribute

Thirty-two states have been approved for the federal unemployment program, but only four states have begun issuing the $300-a-week benefits.

Sketchy Darknet Websites Are Taking Advantage of the Covid-19 Pandemic—Buyer Beware

COMMENTARY | Using these websites to buy needed Covid-related supplies is risky business.

Struggling Small Businesses Are Also at Risk from Postal Service Delays

COMMENTARY | A reliable U.S. Postal Service is critical for small- and medium-sized businesses, which depend on both its wide reach and affordable rates.

Curbside Pickup Is a Lifeline for Eateries. How Long Can It Last?

At least 100 cities have set up curbside pickup zones for restaurants.

Massive Fiscal Relief for Local Governments Is Vital to Keep the Economy Alive

COMMENTARY | With negotiations over the next coronavirus relief bill stalled in Congress, and state and local aid in question, the future of the nation’s economy is uncertain.

In a Bid to Save Local Restaurants, Cities Open Streets and Parking Lots to Outdoor Dining

The popular "Streatery" program in Madison, Wisconsin could extend beyond its current October end date.

How the Pandemic Defeated America

A virus has brought the world’s most powerful country to its knees.

Governors Raise Concerns About Trump’s Unemployment Benefits Order

Asking states to chip in to cover 25% of the enhanced unemployment benefits at a time they are facing significant budget shortfalls is “laughable,” said New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo.

Trump Looks to Executive Orders as Coronavirus Aid Talks Falter

The president said he would issue executive orders to provide some temporary coronavirus relief if Democrats and White House negotiators are unable to come to agreement over a broader aid package. But it remains unclear how he can authorize spending without Congress.

As Sports Teams Struggle, So Do Their Hometowns

With sports and entertainment enterprises fueling much of their local economies, some cities have been especially vulnerable to the collapse in tourism resulting from Covid-19.