High temperatures and strong winds continued to create disastrous fire conditions across Oregon, as hundreds of thousands of acres were scorched and thousands of residents fled their homes. Gov. Kate Brown, a Democrat, said the wildfires could lead to the greatest loss of property and human lives in state history.
Diablo winds in Northern California and Santa Ana winds in the southern part of the state were stoking unprecedented numbers of fires that have already grown explosively. California has already set a record with nearly 2.3 million acres burned this year, and the worst part of the wildfire season is just beginning.
Continuous and strong winds expanded new and existing large fires and threatened communities around Washington. Fire conditions remain dangerous, with a combination of extreme heat, high winds and dry conditions, and with firefighting resources stretched thin.
Hundreds of thousands of U.S. college students who normally live off campus are being counted for the 2020 census at their parents’ homes or other locations. The confusion has enormous implications for college towns, which may face severe shortfalls in federal dollars and a dilution of political power.
Despite job losses and business restrictions because of the coronavirus pandemic, Maryland’s state government collected more tax revenue this budget year than last year. The money coming into the state’s general fund dropped only about $102.2 million, or 0.5%, from pre-pandemic estimates.
Nine days after classes began, James Madison University in Virginia has seen 772 cases of coronavirus among its students and faculty — the most of any college in the state. The school announced that it was sending students home and making classes almost exclusively online, the first in Virginia to reverse course because of the virus.
Weeks after a public commitment to issue a new executive order with sweeping labor protections for vulnerable agricultural workers in the COVID-19 pandemic, North Carolina Democratic Gov. Roy Cooper’s office said it couldn’t follow through, citing pushback from state officials.
South Carolina Senate budget writers gave final approval to a slimmed down spending plan that would offer a one-time bonus to about 30% of state employees, specifically those deemed essential during the COVID-19 outbreak.
Challenges to Democratic Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer’s use of emergency powers during the COVID-19 pandemic were argued for nearly four hours in the state Supreme Court. The debate has implications for executive authority in this and future states of emergency.
Water officials from Arizona, California, Colorado, Nevada, New Mexico and Wyoming urged the U.S. government to halt the approval process for an underground pipeline that would transport billions of gallons of Colorado River water through the desert to southwest Utah.
Republican Ohio Secretary of State Frank LaRose’s prediction that up to half of the state’s votes could be cast via mail ballots amid the COVID-19 pandemic is looking solid.
A wildfire in northern Idaho forced evacuations along a rural highway, and another destroyed an unknown number of structures. The National Interagency Fire Center said eight large wildfires are burning in Idaho.
Democratic Gov. John Bel Edwards said that about 90% of Calcasieu Parish, which includes Lake Charles, is without power nearly two weeks after Hurricane Laura struck Louisiana.
The school district in Anchorage, Alaska, is reporting about a 9% drop in enrollment, and the district says it could see a $26 million impact to its funding because of the increase in homeschooling and drop in enrollment.
Hawaii renters who are at risk of eviction because of the coronavirus pandemic may be eligible for financial help under a new $100 million rent relief and housing assistance program announced by Democratic Gov. David Ige. The new program, underwritten by federal CARES Act funds, will provide renters with monthly rent as well as financial counseling.
New York Democratic Gov. Andrew Cuomo announced that New York City restaurants can open for indoor service at 25% capacity starting on Sept. 30, ending the city’s status as one of the few places in the nation with a complete ban. Restaurants form a critical part of the city’s economy and its currently moribund tourist trade.
Colorado public schools and universities can apply for financial help from a newly launched fund created by Democratic Gov. Jared Polis that’s intended to support learning institutions and students hit hardest by COVID-19. The fund draws from federal CARES Act dollars.
Funded with $20 million provided from the state's CARES Act allocations and $5 million from New Castle County, the Delaware support program will help prop up nonprofits doing difficult work on tight budgets.
The Vermont House has given preliminary approval to $5 million in stimulus payments amid the coronavirus pandemic for residents who did not receive stimulus checks from the federal government based on their immigrant status.
Three open-government groups are calling on legislative leaders to rein in what they say is Rhode Island Democratic Gov. Gina Raimondo’s attempt to extend her emergency decision-making powers “indefinitely” during the pandemic — and beyond what state law allows.
Democratic-Farmer-Labor Gov. Tim Walz extended the state’s peacetime emergency in response to the coronavirus pandemic for another 30 days, triggering a fourth special session of the Minnesota legislature. The session could feature another fight over the governor’s use of executive powers.
The Massachusetts Restaurant Association estimated that 3,600 of the 16,000 restaurants that existed in the state before the pandemic have not reopened — about 23%.
Texas primary care doctors say they’re hemorrhaging cash and at risk of closing their doors during the coronavirus pandemic. A trade group proposal argues it’s time for Texas lawmakers to overhaul how physicians’ practices get paid.
Like the rest of the country, Wisconsin residents lost the extra $600 provided by the CARES Act at the end of July, leaving most recipients of unemployment with only the standard state-level benefits, ranging between $100 and $370 per week.
A comparison of county census response rates between 2010 and 2020 shows more than half of Nevada’s counties have yet to hit response rates from the 2010 census, Lt. Gov. Kate Marshall told members of the Nevada Complete Count Committee.
The 6.9 million cloth face coverings arriving in September may prove useful to some New York schools, but most schools offering in-person learning have already had to procure thousands of face coverings and districts are unsure if they'll get reimbursed for those new costs.
Nearly half of 167 Minnesota bars and restaurants were found out of compliance with COVID-19 safety requirements during recent spot visits by compliance teams, but health leaders said most violations were minor and commended the industry for its efforts.
The numbers come as the Tennessee Department of Education released a dashboard tracking COVID-19 cases linked to schools. The agency reported 756 active COVID-19 cases among students and staff, but the data could be an undercount.
Most counties in Indiana continue to see minimal to moderate spread of the coronavirus, paving the way for schools to bring more students back into their buildings.