Policy and Legislative Updates
June 24, 2020
The Policy and Legislative Advisory Network (PLAN) is committed to keeping the larger network abreast of policies, legislation, regulations, and rules being implemented across the state and nation during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Updates below include information through 6.24.2020 and were provided by:

Please note: This information is subject to change. In addition, some updates may be sourced from organizations that have read limits or limits on how many articles you can access in a given time period.
Local Policy Updates
Coronavirus In Colorado; The Numbers
According to today's data release, in Colorado there have been 293,284 people tested, 31,155 positive cases, 5,375 hospitalized, 1,667 deaths among cases (1,457 deaths due to COVID), 337 outbreaks at residential and non- hospital health care facilities, 60 of 64 counties with positive cases. In Adams County we have 3,971 cases and 154 deaths. Read More from CDPHE HERE
Governor Polis Press Conference- ‘Just Act As If Everybody Might Have Coronavirus’
Colorado epidemiologists said Wednesday afternoon that they're not seeing a big increase in COVID-19 cases like other states have since Colorado transitioned to its "safer-at-home phase," opening restaurants, gyms and other businesses. Data shows that Colorado saw its lowest number of COVID-19 cases since the state peaked in April on June 7, followed by an increase on June 14. Coloradans should still wear face masks and practice social distancing to ensure the state doesn't see a spike. Read More from CPR HERE and CDPHE HERE
Colorado’s COVID-19 Cases Rose Last Week For First Time Since April
The number of new COVID-19 cases in Colorado rose during the week that ended Sunday — the first time that’s happened since late April. A Denver Post analysis of data from the state health department found 1,407 new coronavirus cases reported in Colorado between June 15 and Sunday, up from 1,087 in the previous week. New cases had fallen every week since the one that began April 20. Read More from The Denver Post HERE
Colorado Counties Plead For Compliance As Coronavirus Cases Rise Among Younger People Across The State
Public health departments across Colorado are warning of a dangerous trend: COVID-19 is spreading among young people. The number of new coronavirus cases in Colorado may have generally slowed even as the state eases restrictions on people’s movement after months of demanding that they stay at home. But those who are now getting the disease have tended to be under 30 and are possibly to blame for a slight uptick in cases reported last week. Read More from The Colorado Sun HERE
RTD Sets September Opening Date For Commuter N Line
The Regional Transportation District’s long-delayed commuter rail line to Commerce City, Northglenn and Thornton now has an opening date of Sept. 21. Originally scheduled to begin operation in 2018, the project broke ground in 2014 and is under the project management of Balfour Beatty Rail Infrastructure and Graham Contracting, who use the collective name of Regional Rail Partners. Read More from Colorado Politics HERE
Colorado Supreme Court To Consider How Same-Sex Common-Law Marriages Are Recognized And Defined
The Colorado Supreme Court will consider how same-sex common-law marriages should be recognized and defined in the state in a pair of cases to be argued Wednesday. The court’s rulings could have a broad impact on how disputes about same-sex common-law marriages are handled for years to come. Read More from The Denver Post HERE
An Increasing Number Of Colorado Coronavirus Patients Are Surviving, And Fewer Need Ventilators
A lot has changed in three months about the treatment protocol for COVID-19 — use of the antiviral drug remdesivr, injections of convalescent plasma from recovered patients, and even the simple act of placing hospital patients on their stomachs instead of their backs. Now, as Colorado appears to reach the end of the first wave of the virus, new data released Tuesday from a collaborative of Colorado hospital systems shows just how sharply the use of ventilators has declined in this state, and how much patient outcomes have improved since the early days of coronavirus. Read More from The Colorado Sun HERE
Report- Colorado Ranks Low On Physicians, Hospital Beds Per Capita
Colorado has relatively few physicians and hospital beds per capita to handle a surge in COVID-19 patients, a new analysis has found. QuoteWizard, an insurance price comparison company, analyzed data from the Kaiser Family Foundation about the number of beds and physicians per 1,000 residents in each state. Colorado ranked 45th in capacity, with 2.52 physicians and 1.92 beds per 1,000 residents. Utah had the lowest capacity, while West Virginia, New York and Pennsylvania ranked the highest. Read More from Colorado Politics HERE
Polis Signs $270 Million Small-Business Loan And Grant Programs Into Law
Colorado small businesses that did not get enough pandemic aid from the federal government to remain viable soon will have access to $250 million in low-interest loans and $20 million in grants from the state of Colorado, thanks to two laws signed Tuesday. In a ceremony at Raices Brewing Co. in Denver, Gov. Jared Polis inked House Bill 1413, which will seed a new public-private loan partnership for companies of as many as 100 workers, and Senate Bill 222, which will use CARES Act funding to offer grants to firms of 25 or fewer people. Read More from Denver Business Journal HERE
Eagle County Reports Cluster Of New COVID-19 Cases Among Teens And Young Adults
Eagle County public health officials said Tuesday they are investigating a cluster of COVID-19 cases among teenagers and young adults after at least 11 people tested positive for the respiratory disease following social gatherings. However, Eagle County Public Health and Environment said its investigators who are performing contact-tracing have found some individuals and families are unwilling to isolate at home or share details about events where people may have been exposed — information that health officials rely on to help prevent the spread of disease in the community. Read More from The Denver Post HERE
The Durability Of Redlining In Denver’s Past Is Shaping Coronavirus Hot Spots Now, Researchers Say
Add COVID-19 to the long list of things affected by the racist government practice of "redlining" minority neighborhoods starting back in the 1930s. Banks restricted lending in those places, resulting in decades of disinvestment that researchers have connected to higher poverty, worse schools and a host of other negative outcomes. And now, two researchers at the University of Colorado Denver say those vulnerabilities have weakened formerly redlined neighborhoods' ability to handle crises like the coronavirus. Read More from CPR HERE
COVID-19 Cases At 21 King Soopers And City Market Stores, Union Says
According to Kim Cordova, president of United Food and Commercial Workers Local 7, a union that represents more than 21,000 grocery workers at King Soopers, City Market, Albertsons and Safeway stores in Colorado, the situation is even more serious than the CDPHE's stats suggest. Based on information provided by members to UFCW Local 7, she says, workers for at least 21 King Soopers or City Market stores have come down with the novel coronavirus. Read More from Westword HERE
Renters Are Worried A Pandemic-Caused Eviction Crisis Is About To Hit Colorado
Denver Mayor Hancock had in mid-March announced that as part of his response to the economic impact of the coronavirus, his sheriff deputies would stop carrying out evictions for an indefinite amount of time. But the statewide moratorium and Hancock’s decision have not stopped landlords from starting the eviction procedure with court filings. Since March 16, Denver County Court has had more than 200 such cases filed. Attorneys and advocates fear that pressure on renters will soon increase, sending some into homelessness. Read More from Denverite HERE
Homeless Camp Grows Around Denver Middle School As COVID-19 Cases Increase
COVID-19 cases are increasing within the city’s unhoused population, and evidence suggests people are more likely to contract the virus in a group shelter rather than in an outdoor encampment. Homeless advocates as well as some residents and Denver City Council members say that absent better options, Mayor Michael Hancock should provide encampments with more services and create a dedicated site for those living on the streets. Read More from The Denver Post HERE
Number Of Illegal Fireworks Complaints Taking Off In Denver Metro Area
The night skies in the Denver metro area and along Colorado’s Front Range have been illuminated with fireworks well before Independence Day this year. It’s not just downtown. All over the metro area and Front Range, the sight of fireworks have been illuminating the skies, to the delight of some, frazzling the nerves of others. Read More from CBS 4 Denver HERE  
Primary Legislative Races To Watch
Come November, all 65 seats in the Colorado House and about half of the 35 spots in the Senate are under review, but some will be more closely watched than others next Tuesday. It’s more likely that Democrats grow their advantages, with another blue year at the ballot box, which is expected in a state where the president is unpopular and a critical U.S. Senate seat are sharing the top of the ticket. Read More from Colorado Politics HERE
Pandemic And Protests Are Just Another Piece Of The Health Care Debate For Colorado Voters
Coloradans have plenty on their minds between protests, the pandemic and — in some cases — an upcoming primary election. In fact, those three ‘p’s don’t stand alone. They’re intertwined in the politics of the moment. Even as people take to the streets, Colorado is in the midst of a primary race to decide the Democratic candidate who will challenge Republican Sen. Cory Gardner for the Senate. Both hopefuls, former Gov. John Hickenlooper and former state House Speaker Andrew Romanoff, say the pandemic has made it clear how urgent health care is. Read More from CPR HERE
Two Oil-And-Gas Questions Won't Go To The Ballot This Year
Two more potential ballot questions on oil and gas dropped off the list of possibilities for the November ballot Tuesday afternoon, when the proponents of initiatives 311 and 312 said they would sit it out this year. Initiative 311 would have created a board of experts selected by judges to oversee oil and gas rules, replacing political appointees. Initiative 312 would have kept the Colorado Oil and Gas Conservation Commission from tampering with existing rules on air quality, safety, aesthetics and noise control. Read More from Colorado Politics HERE
Paid Family Leave Supporters In Colorado Push Forward On Petition Effort
Efforts to create a paid family and medical leave program in Colorado ran aground at the statehouse again this year with coronavirus partly to blame. With the sponsors of that would-be legislation backing them, a group of supporters on Monday formally launched their campaign to get paid leave on Colorado’s November ballot and passed into law. With the pandemic-interrupted legislative session now over, the group has until Aug. 3 to collect 124,632 valid signatures to get its Initiative 283 before Colorado voters this fall. Read More from The Denver Post HERE
Some Colorado Voters Now See Racial Justice And Climate Justice As Intertwined Issues
As the country struggles with COVID-19 and a summer of protests, climate change continues to hold a place in the hearts of many voters. A new Pew Research Center poll done during nationwide state stay-at-home orders said two-thirds of Americans think the government should do more on climate change, including policies like tax-credits and tree-planting efforts. A majority of Coloradans have consistently identified with a conservationist mindset. Read More from CPR HERE
Tobacco Tax Diversion For Preschool Clears Hurdle, Advances Toward Ballot With Supreme Court Decision
Two ballot initiatives that would divert money from tobacco taxes and the tobacco master settlement toward preschool programming are one step closer to the ballot, after the Colorado Supreme Court upheld their titles on Monday. Initiatives 293 and 315 would steer money from a variety of drug assistance, HIV prevention and other health programs into preschool instead. Initiative 315 would also increase revenue by $6.3 million annually through the imposition of a tax on tobacco-derived nicotine vapor products. Read More from Colorado Politics HERE
How Colorado Will Run An Election Amid The Coronavirus And What It Means For The June Primary
The start of early in-person voting this week in Colorado marks a key test for officials across the state on how to conduct an election in the middle of a pandemic. The June 30 statewide primary will serve as a trial run for the all-important November election and offer clues about whether the emergency public health rules issued by Secretary of State Jena Griswold will make voters comfortable enough to cast ballots. Read More from The Colorado Sun HERE
Crow, Lamborn Sponsor Defense Bill Codifying Community Assistance Office
U.S. Reps. Jason Crow and Doug Lamborn have introduced a bill to rename and formalize the responsibilities of the Pentagon office that provides technical and financial assistance to military communities by investing in supportive infrastructure or downsizing base operations. Read More from Colorado Politics HERE
With moratorium lifted, will Colorado’s rental market see a spike in evictions?
After a three-month time-out due to the pandemic, Gov. Jared Polis started the clock moving again on evictions for nonpayment of rent in Colorado. Through July 13, landlords must provide a 30-day notice to catch up, rather than the usual 10 days, but once they do, they can go before a judge and ask for tenants to be removed. But opinions vary on whether ending the moratorium will open the flood gates or if the system will see only a slight increase once the initial backlog clears this summer. Read More from The Denver Post HERE
National Policy Updates
What We Learned (And What We’re Still Waiting For) From Tuesday
Most of the hotly-contested Democratic primaries — like the Kentucky Senate primary between Amy McGrath and Charles Booker, and a slew of New York City-area primaries — aren’t called, and we aren’t really expecting any resolution for at least a week. Even though Tuesday night ended without final calls in many of the biggest primaries, the results clearly showed some incumbents in serious trouble and major trends shaking both parties right now. Here are five takeaways from Tuesday’s still-to-be-determined primary results and here’s what we know (and don’t know) so far. More from Politico HERE and HERE
The Pandemic Isn't Over Yet, Despite Vaccine Optimism
Countries around the world and the global economy are desperately waiting for a coronavirus vaccine, and experts say there is a chance one will become available in record time. We really need it to come through, especially in the U.S.. Infections are rising nationwide. In several states, they're breaking one-day records. Hospitalizations are also up — seven states have hit a record number of COVID-19 hospitalizations this week. And over 120,000 people have already died. Read More from Axios HERE
US Virus Cases Surge To Highest Level In 2 Months;Third-Highest Total of New Cases, As Hospitals Rise in Some States
New coronavirus cases in the U.S. have surged to their highest level in two months and are now back to where they were at the peak of the outbreak. The U.S. on Tuesday reported 34,700 new cases of the virus. There have been only two previous days that the U.S. has reported more cases: April 9 and April 24, when a record 36,400 cases were logged. New cases in the U.S. have been surging for more than a week after trending down for more than six weeks. Read More from The Associated Press HERE and the New York Times HERE
Officials Detail Preparations For 'Inevitable' Coronavirus Surge This Fall
As new COVID-19 outbreaks crop up in many parts of the country, heads of agencies leading the federal government’s response to the novel coronavirus pandemic stressed they are going to significant lengths to prepare for a large uptick in cases later this year. Agencies are working to ramp up the production and distribution of personal protective equipment, exponentially increase testing capacity and develop treatments and vaccines. Read More from Government Executive HERE
Every State Is Reopening. Just 7 Meet These Basic Criteria To Do So Safely
All 50 states are moving to reopen their economies, at least partially, after shutting down businesses and gatherings in response to the coronavirus pandemic. But a Vox analysis suggests that most states haven’t made the preparations needed to contain future waves of the pandemic — putting themselves at risk for a rise in COVID-19 cases and deaths should they continue to reopen. Experts told Vox states need three things to be ready to reopen. Read More from Vox HERE
All You Wanted To Know About Coronavirus Vaccine Science But Were Afraid To Ask
Approximately 200 COVID-19 vaccines are being actively developed. All vaccines have one main goal: to prepare a person's immune system to fight off an invading organism should the body encounter it. To accomplish that, a vaccine presents the immune system with something that looks like the invader and is essentially harmless, but nonetheless tricks the body into developing an immune response that would fight off the real virus if it appeared. Read More from NPR HERE
Swamped Mental Health And Addiction Services Appeal For COVID Bailout
Mental health and addiction treatment centers and counselors have been overwhelmed with work during the coronavirus pandemic and economic crash. But many are struggling to stay afloat amid confusion and delays over the federal bailout for the health care industry. As a result, nearly a third haven't received any of the $175 billion HHS is doling out to hospitals and other health providers on the front lines of the coronavirus response. And now, they’re appealing to the government for help. Read More from Politico HERE
The Hidden Costs Of Coronavirus Are The Lives Lost To Addiction, Mental Health Crises
While public health officials are trying to gather data on how many people test positive for the coronavirus and how many people die from the infection, the pandemic has left an untold number dying in the shadows, not directly because of the virus but still because of it. They are unaccounted for in the official tally, which, as of June 21, has topped 119,000 in the U.S. Read More from CPR HERE
The Opioid Crisis In America- Domestic And International Dimensions
As the United States—and the world—reel from the COVID-19 pandemic, the epidemic of opioid addiction continues to ravage the country. To provide new insights and best practices for addressing the multiple dimensions of this epidemic—both for policy stakeholders and for members of the public on the front lines—Brookings has brought together some of the United States’ leading experts on drug policy. Read More from Brookings HERE
IRS May Consider Delaying Tax Filing Deadline Again, Mnuchin Says
U.S. Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin said that his department may consider further extending the deadline for tax-filing, which had previously been moved from April 15 to July 15 due to the coronavirus pandemic, though there aren’t any such plans as of now. The Treasury secretary noted that people who can file their tax returns now should do so by July 15, especially if they are expecting a refund. Read More from Forbes HERE
Treasury Secretary Mnuchin Says The US Economy May Be Out Of A Recession By The End Of The Year
The US economy will emerge from the coronavirus-induced recession in the coming months, according to Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin. Economists expect that a recovery from the impact of the lockdowns to curb the spread of the coronavirus pandemic will take much longer, even if the shock of the crisis was swift. The National Bureau of Economic Research, the official arbiter of recession dates, declared that the US entered a downturn in February, spurred by the shock of the coronavirus pandemic. Read More from Business Insider HERE
What Economists Fear Most During This Recovery
As states push forward in their phased reopenings, we’re getting clues that the beleaguered U.S economy might be on its way to recovery. Retail sales spiked by 17.7 percent in May, and the unemployment rate unexpectedly dropped in that month as well — suggesting that Americans were returning to work and opening their wallets earlier than many expected. But experts still think that even if things are starting to look up now, we shouldn’t assume we’ll be back to normal anytime soon. Read More from FiveThirtyEight HERE
IRS To Pay Interest On Refunds Issued After April 15
Many taxpayers who received or will receive their refunds after April 15 of this year will get interest payments from the IRS, the agency said Wednesday. The IRS said that if individuals have their refunds issued after April 15 and they file their 2019 tax returns returns prior to the July 15 deadline, they will receive interest that covers the period from April 15 until the refund issue date. The development on interest payments comes after the IRS in March extended the filing deadline for individuals' 2019 tax returns from April 15 to July 15 due to the coronavirus pandemic. Read More from The Hill HERE
Stocks Fall As Coronavirus Infections Surge
U.S. stocks tumbled Wednesday as pockets of coronavirus infections emerged in several states, intensifying fears of officials having to reinstate lockdown measures around the country. The Dow Jones Industrial Average fell 683 points, or 2.6%. The S&P 500 declined 2.5%, and the Nasdaq Composite lost 2.1%. New coronavirus cases have jumped in several states, with Arizona, Texas and California reporting daily records for infections Tuesday. Read More from The Wall Street Journal HERE 
CFPB Gives Mortgage Servicers Relief To Help Struggling Homeowners
The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau will give mortgage servicers limited regulatory cover to offer forbearance and loss-mitigation options to their customers suffering financial hardship due to the coronavirus pandemic. In an interim final rule published Tuesday and taking effect July 1, the bureau will waive its requirement that loss-mitigation options only be extended to customers who have submitted a complete loss-mitigation application. Read More from American Banker HERE
Three Steps The Labor Department Is Taking To Make Government More Effective
From Government Executive, "The management scholar Peter Drucker once said, “Efficiency is doing things right; effectiveness is doing the right things.” At the Labor Department we are committed to doing the right things. We have increased accountability within our programs and have taken a hard look at the department’s processes and use of resources to ensure we are being as effective as possible in serving the nation’s workforce." Read More from Government Executive HERE
McConnell, Senate Confirm President Trump's 200th Judicial Nominee
The Senate on Wednesday confirmed President Trump’s 200th judicial nominee. The milestone marks the latest victory for Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.), who views the federal judiciary as a top priority. The Senate voted 52-48 on Cory Wilsons’s nomination to be a Fifth Circuit judge. Like many of Trump’s appeals court judges, Wilson was confirmed largely along party lines with Sen. Susan Collins (R-Maine) the only Republican senator to vote against the nomination. Read More from The Hill HERE
Senate Democrats Block Republican Police Reform Plan
Senate Democrats sank Republicans' police reform plan Wednesday, blocking a key procedural vote amid a fierce partisan clash. The 55-45 vote came a week after Republicans unveiled the measure, led by Sen Tim Scott (R-S.C.), the only African American GOP senator. Senate Democrats, who have their own proposal to curb police misconduct, argued the bill didn't go nearly far enough. Read More from Politico HERE
Senate Democrats Raise Concerns About Debit Cards Used For Stimulus Payments
A group of Senate Democrats on Wednesday raised concerns about the coronavirus relief payments sent to taxpayers via prepaid debit cards, saying the cards have posed challenges for taxpayers. Under legislation enacted in March, most Americans are entitled to one-time direct payments of up to $1,200 per adult and $500 per child. Treasury said earlier this month that it's distributed 159 million payments. The Treasury Department announced in May that it was distributing nearly 4 million of the payments via prepaid debit cards. Read More from The Hill HERE  
I.M.F. Predicts Deeper Global Downturn Even As Economies Reopen
The International Monetary Fund warned on Wednesday that the global economy faces an even deeper downturn than it previously projected as the coronavirus pandemic continues to sow uncertainty and businesses around the world struggle to shake off the virus. The forecast underscores the scale of the task that policymakers are facing as they try to dig out from what the I.M.F. has described as the most severe economic contraction since the Great Depression. Read More from The New York Times HERE
Colleges Spend Millions To Prepare To Reopen Amid Coronavirus
As colleges around the country map out plans to reopen their campuses in the fall, they have embarked on some unique and pricey shopping expeditions: sourcing miles of plexiglass, hundreds of thousands of face masks and, in the case of the University of Central Florida, trying to get in an order for 1,200 hand-sanitizer stations before neighboring theme parks could buy them all up. The added expenses come as many schools face severe budget crunches due to lower enrollment and tuition revenue, refunded housing fees from the spring and costs tied to shifting online. Read More from The Wall Street Journal HERE
Redlining Has A Lingering Effect On Black Homeownership
"Greenlined" areas received the best credit ratings and the easiest access to loans. While "redlined" neighborhoods, which had mostly black residents, were deemed “hazardous” credit areas, making homeownership for people who lived in redlined areas almost impossible. The U.S. may have outlawed redlining more than 50 years ago as a discriminatory policy, but homeowners in formerly redlined areas are still losing money from the racist mortgage lending policy, a new Redfin study shows. Read More from Yahoo Finance HERE
The High Cost Of Bad Sidewalks
Stuck at home because of the coronavirus, millions of urban residents suddenly became acutely aware of an easily overlooked element of urban infrastructure: their neighborhood sidewalks (or lack thereof). During the lockdowns, as walking provided a critical antidote to cabin fever, sidewalks become crowded, contested space. Many are too narrow to provide the requisite six feet of physical distance from others, as a performance artist in Toronto memorably showed. Read More from CityLab HERE
After Long Decline, SNAP Rising Due To COVID-19
The number of people participating in SNAP went up in March and the cost of the program jumped by nearly 15 percent, to $5.1 billion, new data shows. The data, recently posted online by USDA , provides the first national look at how the food safety net began to expand in the early days of the pandemic. Unlike other federal benefits such as unemployment insurance, SNAP data is not released in a timely fashion and is posted months after the fact. Read More from Politico HERE
States Fight Childhood Hunger Amid Coronavirus Pandemic
The coronavirus pandemic has exacerbated childhood hunger among many families for the first time. Millions of children in the U.S. arrived at schools hungry even before the pandemic. Now families experiencing economic stress and unemployment are for the first time are seeking services and help to feed their families. Nonprofits and volunteers helping children directly have had to adjust their models to keep people safe during the pandemic by gathering protective equipment, creating drop-off routes for children unable to reach pick-up sites and scaling grab-and-go systems. Read More from Axios HERE 
What Parents Can Learn From Child Care Centers That Stayed Open During Lockdowns
Throughout the pandemic, many child care centers have stayed open for the children of front-line workers — everyone from doctors to grocery store clerks. As school districts sweat over reopening plans, and with just over half of parents telling pollsters they're comfortable with in-person school this fall, public health and policy experts say education leaders should be discussing and drawing on these real-world child care experiences. Read More from NPR HERE
What America Asks Of Working Parents Is Impossible
If managing the demands of working and parenting in the 21st century feels impossible, Christine M. Beckman and Melissa Mazmanian argue, that’s because the ideals that many working parents subscribe to are impossible to fulfill. Three core myths animate much of American life, according to Beckman and Mazmanian, professors at the University of Southern California and UC Irvine, respectively. Read More from The Atlantic HERE
Taking A Trip To Visit Grandparents Or Older Relatives? Tips To Reduce The Risk
One of the hardest things during this pandemic — for kids and adult children — has been staying away from their parents and grandparents. People 65 years and older are at higher risk for getting a severe case of COVID-19, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. And about 80% of deaths in the U.S. from COVID-19 have been in people older than 65. So it's been especially important for older people to practice social distancing — even from family members — to reduce the risk of infection. Read More from NPR HERE
Small Businesses Face Post-Lockdown Cash Crunch
U.S. macroeconomic data is broadly improving but many small businesses are facing a perilous recovery as they attempt to stay afloat after coronavirus-driven lockdowns throughout the country. That's true even for the many that received government assistance. A recent poll of 7,317 small business owners by Alignable finds that 43% of firms that received money through the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) say they could be out of cash in a month or less. Read More from Axios HERE
Black, Asian Businesses Suffered In Lockdown
The JPMorgan Chase Institute is out with new research this morning showing that Black- and Asian-owned small businesses’ have taken disproportionate hits during the pandemic. While cash balances for small businesses were down by 12.7 percent overall in early April, they dropped by 26 percent for Black businesses and by 22 percent for Asian businesses. JPMorgan released the data as Congress weighs how to direct more aid to the hardest hit small employers in the next relief bill. Read More from Politico HERE
Ahmaud Arbery Murder Suspects Indicted On Murder Charges
A grand jury has indicted the three suspects who were charged in the death of 25-year-old Ahmaud Arbery, who was shot and killed in February in Glynn County, Georgia, the Cobb County District Attorney announced Wednesday. What to know: The indictments charge Travis and Gregory McMichael, along with William “Roddie” Bryan, Jr. on nine counts, including malice murder; four counts of felony murder; two counts of aggravated assault; false imprisonment; and criminal attempt to commit false imprisonment. Read More from Axios HERE
Poll- 7 In 10 Black Americans Say They Have Experienced Incidents Of Discrimination Or Police Mistreatment In Their Lifetime
Amid weeks of protests over the death of George Floyd that have drawn national attention to issues of institutional racism and police violence, the latest KFF Health Tracking Poll finds that seven in ten Black adults say they have experienced serious incidents of discrimination in their lifetime, including half who say they have felt their life was in danger because of their race or ethnicity, and about one in five (rising to 30% of Black men) who say they have been a victim of police violence. Read More from Kaiser Family Foundation HERE
NASA Names DC Headquarters After Agency's First Black Female Engineer Mary W. Jackson
NASA will rename its Washington, D.C., headquarters after Mary W. Jackson, the agency’s first Black woman engineer, Administrator Jim Bridenstine announced Wednesday. Jackson worked for seven years in the agency’s segregated West Area Computing division in 1951 before becoming an engineer in 1958. She had achieved the senior-most engineering title within NASA by 1979, and voluntarily took a demotion to work as an Equal Opportunity Specialist, seeking out accomplished women and minorities for recruitment within NASA. Read More from The Hill HERE
SASC NDAA Authorizes $250 Million For Air Force R&D Partnerships With Launch Industry
The Senate Armed Services Committee’s markup of the National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2021 directs the Air Force to fund up to $250 million in research and development projects to help launch providers prepare to meet future national security launch requirements. The bill, which authorizes $740.5 billion for national defense spending, will be headed to the Senate floor. Read More from Space News HERE
International Policy Updates
African Countries Are Struggling To Keep Track Of COVID-19
South Africa had a plan for slowing the spread of COVID-19. Yet a sound strategy has been undermined by, among other things, testing failures. State-run laboratories suggested they could do 36,000 tests per day by the end of April. Since April 5th they have managed to do just one-fifth of that. Results have also taken too long. As of June 6th the average turnaround time was 12 days. Read More from The Economist HERE
The Historic Saharan Dust Plume Is Darkening Skies In The Caribbean And Will Soon Stretch Into The US
The current Saharan dust episode is leading to the worst dust storm in the Caribbean in decades. Over the weekend, Saharan dust moved into the Caribbean. By Monday, it had changed the tropical blue skies into a hazy brown-gray color. On Tuesday, this sunset enhancing, blue sky limiting, tropical threat reducing dust plume continues its 5,000-mile journey toward the US. Read More from CNN HERE
About Rocky Mountain Cradle to Career Partnership (RMC2C)
The Rocky Mountain Cradle to Career Partnership (RMC2C) Backbone team is working to support network partners in their efforts to navigate through the COVID-19 pandemic. The Backbone continues to be in a position to bring people together to work collectively, specifically around emergency response and recovery related to COVID-19.

Previously, RMC2C has exclusively focused on supporting youth from Cradle to Career. However, in light of the crisis our community currently faces, there is an immediate need to provide the Backbone's expertise, skills, and resources to the larger community.