ISSUE 108 | May 19, 2021
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From Around the Region and the State
Economic and Policy News
Region faces shortage of part-time police officers
Workforce challenges are prevalent in many occupations throughout Northeastern Pennsylvania and across the U.S.

With many retirees in the law enforcement field, for instance, officers who formerly worked part time are transitioning into full-time positions – leaving voids and disinterest in part-time hours.

Regional policing may be the solution.

Bill proposed to require PennDOT investment to lower development costs  
Individuals or entities wishing to erect commercial facilities are currently required to fund improvements to nearby roadways and other infrastructure.

The proposed Transportation Reinvestment and Improvement Program (TRI program) would be established within the Department of Transportation, and help developers manage these costs.

It is expected to encourage business investment and subsequently create sustainable employment.

Luzerne County Cares Commission sets June 27 resource day
The Luzerne County Cares Commission has announced a new date for its resource day, a coordinated event to assist people who are homeless, suffering from substance abuse, or struggling with mental health issues.

Having previously been scheduled for January and postponed due to the coronavirus, it will now take place at Kirby Park on June 27.

Efforts to provide COVID-19 vaccines are underway as well.

Research Spotlight: Use the link below and click on the red 'Planning, Land Use, Transportation & Infrastructure' label to scroll down and take a deep dive into The Institute's exploration of the subject.
From Around the Nation and the Globe
Economic and Policy News
California proposes nation’s most extensive housing supports 
California Governor Gavin Newson has proposed a large renter assistance package to help Californians pay their back-rent, their rent for the months to come, and their overdue utility bills.

Assistance would be available for tenant legal fees as well.

The plan has been applauded by renter advocates and landlord associations alike.

Women still bear the brunt of workforce challenges 
The COVID-19 pandemic has disproportionately harmed female workers – due both to the closure of schools that left them with more primary caretaking responsibilities as well as the interruption of retail and hospitality industries through which so many are employed.

The impact has been even more disparate for women of color.

In response, some policymakers are approaching economic recovery through a lens of intersectionality.

Free beer, weed, and money among incentives to receive COVID-19 vaccine
COVID-19 vaccine availability has begun to outpace demand, pushing hopes of herd immunity further from reach.

Limited access is part of the challenge, along with vaccine hesitancy.

Among other things, incentives to get the shot now include free beer, free weed, and $1 million.

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