Policy and Legislative Updates
June 29, 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 6.29.2020 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 NumbersAccording to today's data release, in Colorado there have been 320,997 people tested, 32,511 positive cases, 5,442 hospitalized, 1,682 deaths among cases (1,508 deaths due to COVID), 353 outbreaks at residential and non- hospital health care facilities, 61 of 64 counties with positive cases. In Adams County we have 4,170 cases and 155 deaths. Read More from CDPHE HERE
3 Arrested After Protesters Set Fire To Civil War Statue Pedestal At The Capitol; Governor Polis Releases Statement On Attempted Arson
Denver Police have apprehended three people after a small group of protesters attempted to set fire to the pedestal of a Civil War statue toppled at the state Capitol. In a statement, Democratic Gov. Jared Polis lauded the arrests and hope it would provide a breakthrough into investigations of damage to public property. A report from 9News said that about 75 protesters had been demonstrating peacefully around the Capitol late Saturday when a small group broke off and went to the statue site. Just before 11 p.m., a fire was set atop the mostly-concrete pedestal using wood and other materials. Read More from CPR HERE and Governor Jared Polis HERE
Delays To Trials Permissible Due To COVID-19, State Supreme Court Rules
Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, prosecutors may request up to a six-month delay without violating the constitutional requirement to a speedy trial, the Colorado Supreme Court decided on Monday. In a pair of misdemeanor cases from Gilpin County, both before the same county court judge, the defendants were to reach their trial deadline on April 9. The Sixth Amendment guarantees the right to a speedy trial, and under Colorado law, prosecutors have six months from the date of a guilty plea to bring a defendant to trial. If they fail to do so, the charges are dismissed. Read More from Colorado Politics HERE
Sweeps Of Homeless Camps In Denver, Elsewhere Run Counter To COVID-19 Guidance And Pile On Health Risks
Several cities across the U.S. are bucking recommendations from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention by continuing sweeps of homeless encampments, risking further spread of the virus at a time when health officials seek to gain an upper hand on the pandemic. Such struggles involving COVID-19 highlight the nation’s ongoing problem with housing. And they showcase the challenge public health officials face. Read More from The Denver Post HERE
Thousands Call For Justice For Elijah McClain In A Day Of Music And Marching
A day of events to honor a man killed after a violent encounter with Aurora police ended with music and a police barricade Saturday night. Officers in riot gear marched shoulder to shoulder to push protesters and musicians out of a park in Aurora's Municipal Center. They launched tear gas and pepper spray as they cleared demonstrators away from police headquarters. All the while, protesters screamed a warning that children were present. Read More from CPR HERE
One-Third Of Colorado Is Now In A Severe Drought, Mostly In The South
Drought conditions are setting in across most of Colorado, and that has top state officials worried about wildfire, crop losses and water restrictions. Nearly 83% of Colorado is experiencing abnormally dry conditions and 33% is reporting extreme or severe drought, as of Tuesday, the U.S. Drought Monitor reported, up slightly from the week before. A year ago, none of the state was experiencing drought conditions. Read More from The Colorado Sun HERE
Evacuations Underway As 456-Acre Wildfire Burns Southeast Of Chatfield State Park
Firefighters are battling a 456-acre wildfire southeast of Chatfield State Park where high winds and dry vegetation are creating “dangerous firefighting conditions.” The BackCountry subdivision and the nearby Highlands Ranch Law Enforcement Training Foundation are being evacuated. South Metro Fire Rescue responded to what’s being called the Chatridge 2 fire around 10 a.m. Monday near the intersection of Chatridge Court and U.S. 85 in unincorporated Douglas County. By 12:20 p.m., the fire had grown to at least 267 acres and was 60% contained. Read More from The Denver Post HERE
Arapahoe County To Begin Mortgage, Rental Assistance Program
Arapahoe County has unveiled a financial aid program for lower-income households that lost wages from the COVID-19 pandemic. The Rental and Mortgage Assistance Program requires that county residents provide proof they applied for unemployment benefits and their household incomes do not exceed 80% of the median, which is approximately $78,500 for a family of four. Read More from Colorado Politics HERE 
COVID-19 Colorado Daily Cases More Than Double In Ten Days
Governor Jared Polis has acknowledged that worrisome data related to COVID-19 is on the rise in the state, and the latest figures from the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment offer striking confirmation. The number of daily cases is now more than double the rates in mid-June. On June 15, the CDPHE counted 128 new cases. But the cases began climbing shortly thereafter, and after a brief dip, they're up again: 274 on June 25, 272 on June 26 and 271 on June 27, the most recent date for which data is available. Read More from Westword HERE
COVID Threat Isn’t Over, Especially For Coloradans With Chronic Conditions
The COVID-19 pandemic has been a shock for most people, but for Clay Drake, much of it was familiar: the need to stay in, the stocking up on hand sanitizer, the concern that a simple trip to church could turn deadly. While many — though not all — healthy people who get COVID-19 can recover at home, those who have chronic conditions are six times as likely to be hospitalized and 12 times as likely to die, according to a report from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Read More from The Denver Post HERE
How Children's Hospital Colorado Is Advancing Key Research For COVID-19 In Children
One of the many mysteries with the novel coronavirus is how it affects children far differently than it impacts adults. Children’s Hospital Colorado in Aurora is one of the institutions playing a pivotal role in research aimed at solving those mysteries. Its Breathing Institute is collaborating with other centers on three different research projects. Two of those projects address COVID-19’s relationship with asthma and children. One looks at protecting vulnerable populations, specifically the Navajo Nation, where the prevalence rate of asthma is double those of the U.S. population. Read More from Denver Business Journal HERE
State Allows DougCo To Increase Event Capacity, Even As Statewide COVID-19 Infections Rise
Douglas County will be allowed to have indoor gatherings up to a maximum of 175 people and outdoor gatherings of up to 250 people under a variance from Colorado’s “safer-at-home” guidance that the state’s health department approved on Friday. The variance applies to events, pools and “life rites." Read More from Colorado Politics HERE
COVID Measures Have Made Immigrant Detentions Longer And more Isolated
Laura Lunn is an attorney who oversees the Rocky Mountain Immigrant Advocacy Network’s detention program. She’s watched the Department of Justice’s court inside the detention center unravel as COVID-19 cases rose in the area. The court closed completely in March due to the pandemic. Though proceedings have begun again and attorneys are now allowed inside, Lunn said many have not been willing to risk exposure to the virus. Read More from Denverite HERE
Colorado Federal Student Aid Applications Dip During The Coronavirus Pandemic
Getting students to apply for the Free Application for Federal Student Aid was a problem for Colorado before the pandemic. For those that work with students to get them to apply, the coronavirus pandemic has disconnected many counselors from students, making it difficult to get high schoolers to complete the form. Colorado is near the bottom in FAFSA completion numbers. Read More from Chalkbeat Colorado HERE
84,000 Students Will Soon Return To School In Jefferson County. Here’s What That Takes
To the deputy superintendent for Jefferson County Public Schools, the reopening of schools this fall feels different. Yes, there are still many unknowns. Schools don’t have a clear idea on how many kids will show up and health regulations may change. But Kristopher Schuh, whose personality is upbeat and confident, said the thinking on reopening is much more strategic than the closure, which took everyone by surprise. First, there’s been some time to plan, even if it’s just weeks. But mainly, he said, it’s because of unprecedented collaboration between school districts and health and education officials. Read More from CPR HERE
Denver Charter Schools Received $16 Million In Federal Coronavirus Aid For Small Businesses
Denver charter schools received a total of $16 million in federal coronavirus relief funds meant to help keep small businesses afloat during the pandemic. Charter school critics nationally have balked at charters receiving federal Paycheck Protection Program funding, which is not available to traditional public schools. But Denver charter leaders have committed to reckoning with any inequity created by the funding. Read More from The Denver Post HERE
Denver Public Schools Taking The Plunge As Districts Plan To Get Kids Back In The Classroom
Colorado’s largest public school district will return to in-person classes this fall after transitioning to remote learning in the spring, but students’ school days will look a lot different with mandatory masks, health screenings upon entering schools and modified schedules that keep cohorts of kids together. The district will also offer an online schooling option for grades K-12 to accommodate families uncomfortable sending their kids back to classrooms. Read More from The Colorado Sun HERE
FAFSA Requirement Hinders Colorado Colleges’ Ability To Distribute Coronavirus Relief Funds To Students
The federal coronavirus relief package was supposed to put money into the pockets of struggling college students so they could continue their education. But the program has failed to reach many students because of its paperwork requirement. Metropolitan State University of Denver identified nearly 4,000 students who could be eligible for an immediate $250 to $650 emergency grant but who did not fill out the Free Application for Federal Student Aid. Only 81 of those 4,000 students have received the federal aid. Read More from Chalkbeat Colorado HERE
Hospitality School To Shutter Its Denver Campus
Johnson & Wales University announced Thursday it will close its campuses in Denver and North Miami. The nonprofit university is based in Providence, Rhode Island, and also has a campus in Charlotte, North Carolina. The school will not enroll students in Denver or North Miami in fall 2020. Returning students will be able to complete their education through the 2020-21 academic year. Operations on those campuses will end by summer 2021. Read More from Denver Business Journal HERE
Governor Polis Takes Action In Response To COVID-19
The Governor signed an Executive Order directing the Colorado Department of Human Services to access federal funds for child care services during the COVID-19 pandemic to ensure stability and consistency for child care providers and protect the vital role they play for children and families. Gov. Polis signed an Executive Order extending the use of telehealth services due to the COVID-19 pandemic. The Governor extended an Executive Order concerning the temporary suspension of certain requirements preventing the issuance of marriage licenses, and extended an Executive Order concerning the suspension of certain regulatory statutes. The Governor extended an Executive Order ordering the temporary suspension of certain regulatory statutes concerning petition gathering for Unaffiliated and Independent candidates for office. Read More from Governor Jared Polis HERE
Campaign Finance- Who's Spending And For Whom In The 2020 Primaries
The last campaign finance reports due before Tuesday’s primary are rolling in, and so are the big bucks. More than $4 million has been spent on advertising and electioneering communications since May 1. As of noon Monday, about a dozen committees had reported their spending through June 24. Here's who's spending and who they're spending for. Read More from Colorado Politics HERE
Voters Guide To Colorado's 2020 Primary
Colorado's primary election is on Tuesday, June 30 as voters will decide on candidates for Congress, state legislature, and other races. If you have not already registered to vote, Colorado law allows you to do so up to election day at a Voter Service and Polling Center. See below for a list and link to find locations in your county. Visit the Secretary of State's page for complete statewide election information. If you are an affiliated voter, you received a ballot for your party. Unaffiliated voters should receive two ballots, but can only return one. In this election, 17-year-old voters can participate if they are turning 18 years old before Nov. 3. The deadline for mail-in ballots was June 22. If you still need to make your vote count, do so by getting your ballot to an official dropbox. The deadline to drop-off a ballot is 7 p.m. on Tuesday, June 30. Read More from KOAA News5 HERE
As Decision Day Nears, Hickenlooper And Romanoff Campaigns Make Final Say
Democratic U.S. Senate candidates John Hickenlooper and Andrew Romanoff spent the weekend rallying campaign volunteers and chasing ballots as Tuesday's deadline to vote for Republican Cory Gardner's challenger approaches. Former Gov. John Hickenlooper is the national party's first choice for the nomination, but his campaign has hit some snags in recent weeks. The other name on the ballot is former state House Speaker Andrew Romanoff, who is less well-known in Colorado and running to the left as the more progressive candidate. Read More from Colorado Politics HERE  and NPR HERE
Colorado Supreme Court Upholds State’s Law Banning Large-Capacity Gun Magazines
The Colorado Supreme Court on Monday upheld the state’s 7-year-old ban on gun magazines that hold more than 15 rounds of ammunition. Rocky Mountain Gun Owners, a fierce gun rights organization based in Colorado, challenged the large-capacity magazine law, arguing that it violates the state constitution. The Colorado Supreme Court, however, disagreed. Justice Monica M. Márquez, in writing the court’s opinion, said the ban is “a reasonable exercise of the police power that has neither the purpose nor effect of nullifying the right to bear arms in self-defense.” Read More from The Colorado Sun HERE
National Policy Updates
Trump Says He Will Nominate William Perry Pendley To Permanently Run The Bureau of Land Management
President Donald Trump said Friday that he intends to nominate William Perry Pendley to be the permanent director of the Bureau of Land Management. Pendley has been acting director of the agency since July. This will be the first time Trump has nominated someone to the job since he took office in January 2017. Secretary of the Interior David Bernhardt applauded the announcement, noting Pendley has been leading the BLM for the past year. But Pendley is a controversial choice, and he is not expected to have an easy confirmation. Read More from CPR HERE
Congress Unites To Demand Answers From Trump On Russian Bounties In Afghanistan
Members of Congress in both parties demanded answers on Monday about reported bounties paid by Russian operatives to Afghan insurgents for targeting American troops. The story is unfolding along two parallel tracks in Washington, based on two key questions: First, what actually has taken place — and have any American troops been killed as a result of Russian-sponsored targeted action? And second: Who knew what about the reporting on these allegations that has flowed up from the operational level in Afghanistan? Read More from NPR HERE
Election 2020- How Arizona Became A Swing State
Despite candidates from Barack Obama to Hillary Clinton investing in Arizona, no Democratic presidential candidate has carried it since Bill Clinton in 1996. In fact, no Democrat won a statewide election in Arizona on any level after 2008 until 2018, despite numerous close calls. Now, in 2020, Joe Biden looks like he has a chance to actually win Arizona’s 11 electoral votes. As of June 29, Biden led Trump by 4.7 points in our Arizona polling average. And it looks like Democrats could flip another Senate seat here too, as Democrat Mark Kelly leads Republican Sen. Martha McSally by double digits in numerous polls. Read More from FiveThirtyEight HERE
In Historic Vote, House Approves Statehood For The District of Columbia
The House of Representatives voted nearly along party lines on Friday to grant statehood to Washington, D.C., the first time a chamber of Congress has approved establishing the nation’s capital as a state. The legislation, which is unlikely to advance in the Republican-led Senate, would establish a 51st state — Washington, Douglass Commonwealth, named in honor of Frederick Douglass — and allow it two senators and a voting representative in the House. Read More from The New York Times HERE
Filibuster Reform Gains Steam With Democrats
Democrats are stepping up talks about reforming or abolishing the filibuster if they win back the Senate and White House in November. The renewed discussions are being spurred by Sen. Jeff Merkley (D-Ore.), an outspoken liberal who has long championed revamping the procedural tactic that Democrats see as a serious obstacle to passing legislation and confirming nominees. Read More from The Hill HERE
Schumer, Pelosi To McConnell- Move On Coronavirus Relief
Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer and Speaker Nancy Pelosi on Monday reiterated their demands for Senate Republicans to immediately take up additional coronavirus relief, as the U.S. caseload surges to its highest-ever levels amid a spike in states like Florida and Texas. McConnell has signaled the Senate will not consider coronavirus relief until after the chamber's two-week July 4 recess. Read More from Politico HERE
Supreme Court Strikes Down Louisiana Abortion Restrictions
The Supreme Court on Monday struck down a Louisiana abortion law, handing a win to abortion rights advocates who feared the conservative court would break with past rulings to rein in protections that emerged from the landmark decision in Roe v. Wade. The justices voted 5-4 to invalidate Louisiana’s admitting-privilege law in the first major abortion ruling of the Trump era, which came after the court struck down a nearly identical Texas law four years ago. Read More from The Hill HERE
Supreme Court Gives President Power To Fire Key Independent Agency Chief; The Big Decision On The CFPB and The "Unitary Executive," Explained
The U.S. Supreme Court ruled Monday that the president can fire at will the head of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, the independent agency Congress created in 2010 to protect consumers from abuses in the banking and financial services industry, abuses that led to the 2008 financial meltdown. In order to ensure the CFPB's independence, the law creating the agency called for it to be headed by a single director, confirmed by the Senate, who would serve a five-year term and who could only be fired for malfeasance, inefficiency or neglect of duty. Read More from NPR HERE and Vox HERE
Supreme Court Won't Hear Border Wall Challenge
The U.S. Supreme Court declined to take a case challenging President Trump’s border wall, leaving in place a decision that rejected environmental groups' quest to stop construction. The court will not hear an appeal to a case seeking to block construction on 145 miles of wall running along Arizona, California, New Mexico and Texas. The Center for Biological Diversity, Defenders of Wildlife and other environmental groups filed the cause in January, arguing the Department of Homeland Security did not have the authority to waive environmental requirements to speed construction. Read More from The Hill HERE
Supreme Court Won’t Hear Challenge To New Federal Death Penalty Procedure
The Supreme Court will not consider a challenge to new federal death penalty protocols proposed by the Justice Department, clearing the way for the government to resume executions as early as July for the first time since 2003. The court, without comment, declined Monday to take up the lawsuit filed by four death row inmates. As is customary, it gave no reason. Justices Ruth Bader Ginsburg and Sonia Sotomayor indicated that they would have accepted the case. Read More from The Washington Post HERE
The World Hits Sobering Coronavirus Milestones- 500,000 Dead And 10 Million Confirmed Cases; A Quarter Of Them Are Americans
The world surpassed two sobering coronavirus milestones Sunday — 500,000 confirmed deaths, 10 million confirmed cases — and hit another high mark for daily new infections as governments that attempted reopenings continued to backtrack and warn that worse news could be yet to come. The United States has the highest confirmed fatality count, having recorded at least 125,800 deaths -- just over a quarter of the global total as of Monday. Read More from Time HERE , Bloomberg HERE , and CNN HERE
More States Reverse Or Slow Reopening Plans As Coronavirus Cases Climb
Governors in Washington, California, Florida and Texas are walking back some of their reopening plans as coronavirus cases rise in more than 30 states across the U.S. As of Sunday, new COVID-19 cases jumped by at least 5% over the previous week in 37 states across the country, based on a seven-day moving average. The number of new daily COVID-19 cases across the nation jumped 42% over the past week to an average of about 38,200 on Sunday. Read More from CNBC HERE
Not Enough Contact Tracers; Tracking Coronavirus Cases Proves Difficult Amid New Surge
States are scrambling to contain COVID spikes without enough workers to track outbreaks. Experts’ goal this spring had been at least 100,000 contact tracers to safely reopen the country. But CDC Director Robert Redfield told Congress last week that fewer than 30,000 have been hired so far. Many tracers are finding it hard to break through suspicion and apathy to convince people that compliance is crucial. Tracers say it's exponentially more difficult now that many restaurants, bars and gyms are full, and people are gathering with family and friends. Read More from Politico HERE and ABC News HERE
U.S. Coronavirus Hotspots Failed To Build Up Public Health Tools
Most of the states facing large coronavirus outbreaks today didn't build up their public health systems enough ahead of time. States like Arizona, Florida and Texas had months to learn from the mistakes of New York and other early hotspots, yet find themselves now in similar situations. U.S. has rapidly scaled up its testing and contact tracing capabilities, but they're still not nearly enough. Read More from Axios HERE
54,000 Deaths In The U.S. Are Linked To Nursing Homes
At least 54,000 residents and employees of nursing homes and long-term care facilities have died from the coronavirus, accounting for 43 percent of virus-related deaths in the United States. Relying on reports from states, counties and individual facilities, as well as some data from the federal government, The New York Times has tracked 282,000 known coronavirus cases at some 12,000 facilities. Most of the country’s largest clusters have emerged in nursing homes, prisons and food processing facilities. Read More from The New York Times HERE 
This Coronavirus Mutation Has Taken Over The World. Scientists Are Trying To Understand Why
When the first coronavirus cases in Chicago appeared in January, they bore the same genetic signatures as a germ that emerged in China weeks before. But as Egon Ozer, an infectious-disease specialist at the Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine, examined the genetic structure of virus samples from local patients, he noticed something different. A change in the virus was appearing again and again. This mutation, associated with outbreaks in Europe and New York, eventually took over the city. Read More from The Washington Post HERE
HHS Secures 500,000 Doses Of Remdesivir
The Trump administration has secured 500,000 doses of remdesivir, the first drug shown to be effective at treating hospitalized coronavirus patients, ensuring these doses will be for U.S. use. Between the lines: The administration is not directly purchasing the drug, but it will use coronavirus hospitalization data to determine how to allocate it by state, and state health departments will decide which hospitals will get the drug. Read More from Axios HERE
Two Friends In Texas Were Tested For Coronavirus. One Bill Was $199. The Other? $6,408
Before a camping and kayaking trip along the Texas Coast, Pam LeBlanc and Jimmy Harvey decided to get coronavirus tests. They wanted a bit more peace of mind before spending 13 days in close quarters along with three friends. The two got drive-through tests at Austin Emergency Center in Austin. Their tests came back with the same result — negative, allowing the trip to go ahead — but the accompanying bills were quite different. Read More from The New York Times HERE
U.S. Pediatricians Call For In-Person School This Fall
The nation's pediatricians have come out with a strong statement in favor of bringing children back to the classroom this fall wherever and whenever they can do so safely. The American Academy of Pediatrics' guidance "strongly advocates that all policy considerations for the coming school year should start with a goal of having students physically present in school." The AAP cites "mounting evidence" that transmission of the coronavirus by young children is uncommon, partly because they are less likely to contract it in the first place. Read More from NPR HERE
Expecting A Tax Refund? Be Prepared To Wait
Taxpayers may be in for a long wait for refunds, as an estimated 4.7 million returns were backlogged at the IRS by mid-May because of the agency’s employee evacuation for the coronavirus pandemic. While more than 90 percent of individual tax returns filed annually to the IRS are sent in electronically, another approximately 10 million paper returns still arrive by mail. Processing such documents can’t be done remotely, so IRS workers who’ve been recalled throughout June to resume more normal duties have just begun to address the paper return inventory. Read More from Politico HERE
Another Coronavirus-Driven Economic Dip May Need New Policy Ideas
The economic progress made by the U.S. over the last month is slowly falling apart. Three of the four most populous states in the country are seeing notable increases in confirmed cases of COVID-19, business activity is contracting, consumer confidence is retreating, bankruptcy filings are rising, and the stock market is falling. Even before governors in various states announced new bar and restaurant restrictions on Friday, "high frequency data on service sector activity suggests businesses and consumers may already be responding to the surge in new cases.". Read More from Axios HERE 
ICE Struggles To Protect Detained Immigrants As Coronavirus Spreads In Its Facilities
Immigrants held in federal detention have inadequate access to equipment and supplies to protect them from the spread of the novel coronavirus, and those who have tested positive for COVID-19 are not being quarantined or isolated from the rest of the population. Cases among the detained population at Immigration and Customs Enforcement have spiked by nearly 500% from late April to late May. There are now nearly 2,500 cases, according to the most recent figures from ICE, and two immigrants have died. Read More from Government Executive HERE
Another Tax Deadline Delay? It Isn't That Simple
Hopes — and apprehensions — are running high as the Treasury Department considers yet another delay in tax deadlines. On one side, pleading for a reprieve, are conservatives like Grover Norquist, the union representing IRS employees, and businesses concerned about their finances. Opposing them are state tax collectors, tax preparers and others worried about everything from the knock-on effects on state budgets to the prospect of taxpayers racking up huge delayed tax bills they won’t be able to pay. Read More from Politico HERE
The (Near) Cashless Society Arrives
People have suddenly stopped using money — of the bill-and-coin variety — for fear it may spread the virus. Some worried shopkeepers have stopped accepting it, too. The coronavirus may have changed our buying and payment habits forever. Online shopping is through the roof, and consumers are rushing to get "contactless" credit and debit cards, which are tapped at a merchant terminal rather than inserted or swiped. ATM use is down 32%, according to Visa, and 63% of consumers say they're using less cash. Read More from Axios HERE
Ball Aerospace Wins NOAA Space Weather Contract
Ball Aerospace won a $96.9 million contract June 25 to build, integrate and operate the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s Space Weather Follow On (SWFO) satellite destined for Earth-Sun Lagrange Point 1. Ball Aerospace will design and manufacture the satellite bus, integrate government-furnished instruments, perform testing, help train the flight operations team, check-out the satellite in orbit and support mission operations. The SWFO-L1 contract covers work scheduled to be completed in March 2025. Read More from SpaceNews HERE
What Happens To Public Space When Everything Moves Outside
In this pandemic recovery period, city streets are starting to look a little different. To create room for social distancing, restaurant, bar and café tables are spilling out into the street. In some cases, this means more businesses adopt a Parisian sidewalk café model. In other cities, this design skips right past the sidewalks, which need all the room they can get for socially distanced pedestrians. Instead, tables occupy parking spots and vehicle lanes, and in some cases parks or public squares. This new way of organizing street space has already been rolled out in many cities. Read More from CityLab HERE
Millions More Homes Face Flood Risk Than Previously Thought
Nearly 70% more properties in the U.S. are at substantial risk of flooding compared to government estimates. Increased flooding, including from sea level rise and intensifying rains, is one of the clearest and most expensive impacts from rising global temperatures. The data will soon feed a new feature on Realtor.com that displays flood risk rankings of nearly every U.S. home. It's part of an initiative by First Street Foundation, a nonprofit research and technology firm. Realtor.com plans to integrate the data soon on its website, though it doesn't have a specific launch date yet. Read More from Axios HERE
African-American Businesses Need More Than “Buy Black” Campaigns
A “buy black” challenge, sponsored by the Black Lives Matter protest movement, began on June 19th, or “Juneteenth”, an unofficial celebration of the abolition of slavery in America. The campaign runs until July 4th. If American consumers directed just a small portion of the $13T they spend each quarter to black businesses, that surge in revenues might help build them up. With 13% of the population, black Americans owned just 2.1% of small businesses with employees. Today they hold 2.1% of the country’s private business wealth. Read More from The Economist HERE
The 3 Weeks That Changed Everything
Coping with a pandemic is one of the most complex challenges a society can face. To minimize death and damage, leaders and citizens must orchestrate a huge array of different resources and tools. The response must be global, because the virus can spread anywhere, but an effective response also depends heavily on national policies, plus implementation at the state and community level. Read More from The Atlantic HERE
What’s Behind The Great American Fireworks Boom?
On Monday night, a phalanx of irritated New York City drivers turned up outside Gracie Mansion for a cacophonous midnight traffic jam. The protesters assembled in response to the mayor’s perceived inaction over the latest conflict roiling this city, and many others across the U.S.: illegal fireworks, the new pandemic national pastime. In the first 21 days of June, fireworks complaints in NYC jumped by an almost comically nonsensical 40,000% over the same period last year. Read More from CityLab 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.