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Updated Report on US Government Responses to the Coronavirus

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In September we posted about a newly-published report on federal and state executive responses to COVID-19. Over the past couple months we expanded our research and reviewed actions by local governments and Congress related to the pandemic. Our earlier report has now been updated to include our new findings, and is available on

Screen capture of coronavirus report page
Report Homepage of Federal, State, and Local Government Responses to COVID-19.

The report briefly discusses Congress’ emergency appropriations process and summarizes key legislation that has been passed in response to the pandemic, including the CARES Act and the Families First Coronavirus Response Act. The report offers examples of legislation, rather than analyzing the laws in detail. Researchers who are interested in a more thorough analysis may search for and review Congressional Research Service (CRS) reports online.

Another addition to the report is a section on local government actions. This part of the report discusses anticipated local government funding shortfalls, public school administration, police powers, and mask mandates, among other topics. The report also offers examples of how municipalities across the nation have implemented new policies and emergency measures.

Although this report was finalized only a few weeks ago, it captures a moment in time. The coronavirus pandemic is a dynamic and evolving situation, and new government responses are being announced daily, including limits on private social gatherings, travel restrictions, and curfews. To remain updated on changes to your local conditions, visit resources such as your state’s health department website, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, and the National Governors Association.

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