• Advocacy Team

COVID-19 State Updates: May 18, 2020


By Sunday, Ohio reported 27,923 cases of the coronavirus, and 1,625 deaths.

The DeWine administration is not yet ordering cuts to General Revenue Fund budgets for FY21, as it did for the current fiscal year, but wants agencies to keep a share of their budgeted spending in reserve in anticipation of further revenue shortfalls.

Governor Mike DeWine will likely have an announcement about health-access measures for African-American Ohioans at his daily briefing this week; it’s been approximately one month since the Governor’s Minority Health Strike Force began meeting to discuss strategies to combat the coronavirus’ impact on black communities.

The Ohio Director of Health orders for reopening personal services and restaurants and bars is here.

On May 21, campgrounds in Ohio will be permitted to reopen if these facilities can meet required safety protocols.

  • The full list of mandatory and recommended best practices for both campgrounds and campers is here.

On May 22, horse racing in Ohio will be permitted if these operations can meet required safety protocols; spectators will not be permitted.

On May 26, gyms and fitness centers in Ohio will be permitted to reopen if these facilities can meet required safety protocols.

  • A full list of mandatory and recommended best practices will be available soon at coronavirus.ohio.gov.

On May 26, sports leagues in Ohio will be permitted to operate if these leagues can meet required safety protocols.

  • This applies only to non-contact and limited-contact sports.

  • A full list of mandatory and recommended best practices will be available soon at coronavirus.ohio.gov.

  • Note that safety protocols for high-contact sports are in development.

On May 26, public pools and club pools that are regulated by local health departments in Ohio will be permitted to reopen if these facilities can meet required safety protocols.

  • According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, there is no evidence that the virus that causes COVID-19 can be spread to people through the water in pools, hot tubs, spas, or water play areas.

  • Proper operation and maintenance (including disinfection with chlorine and bromine) of these facilities should inactivate the virus in the water.

  • A full list of mandatory and recommended best practices will be available soon at coronavirus.ohio.gov.

On May 31, childcare providers in Ohio will be permitted to reopen if they can meet required safety protocols.

  • The full list of mandatory and recommended best practices is here.

  • To assist in the reopening of child care centers, Ohio will seek to use more than $60 million in federal CARES Act funding to provide reopening grants to all of Ohio’s childcare providers, including family childcare, childcare centers, and both publicly-funded and private providers.

Senator Matt Dolan shared during Senate Finance Committee that the Senate intends to pass a re-appropriations bill before the end of June with an emergency clause.

  • The inclusion of an emergency clause would eliminate the 90-day wait period for the law to go into effect following the Governor's signature.

  • The Ohio House has not announced whether it shares the Senate's interest in passing a re-appropriations bill on this timeline. The Chairman shared that the passage of a re-appropriations bill would be introduced and passed out of Senate Finance Committee over the next several meetings in order to stimulate commerce.

The Ohio House Economic Recovery Task Force, Ohio 2020, will hold their next meeting today.

State civil immunity legislation in the Ohio House, HB 606, and Ohio Senate, SB 308, will receive their next hearings on Tuesday and Wednesday.

  • HB 606 will receive its third hearing for all testimony in House Civil Justice Committee on May 19 at 3:00 p.m.

  • SB 308 will receive its third hearing for all testimony, with amendments and a vote possible, in Senate Judiciary Committee on May 20 at 9:15 a.m.

Secretary of State Frank LaRose proposed several changes to November’s election.

  • The plan includes in-person voting options and changes to improve voting by mail and he is working with the legislature on a plan to put forward.

  • Meanwhile, members of the House Democratic Caucus outlined their ideas Friday for reforming voting in Ohio before the November election, including mailing a ballot to all registered voters.

Last week, Governor DeWine announced a one-time rebate to defray the cost of restocking high-proof liquor.

  • Beginning in mid-May, JobsOhio will provide a $500 rebate for eligible purchases made through Ohio Liquor Contract Agencies.

  • For more rebate information and program registration, visit wholesale.ohlq.com.

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