Kansas - COVID-19 Covered

Kansas

Total Cases: 9,920 (June 2)
Tests Administered: 95,241 (June 1)
Fatalities: 217 (June 2)
Testing:
  • The Kansas Department of Health has announced that it is searching for volunteers to help the state with contact tracing. (May 11)
  • HealthCore Clinic, a health clinic located in Wichita, will reportedly start offering free COVID-19 testing on Monday, May 11. (May 10)
  • Governor Kelly reportedly announced that the state has a sufficient amount of COVID-19 tests available but has a shortage of N-95 masks. (May 8)
  • Kansas State University is reportedly offering COVID-19 testing for students, faculty, and other staff. The university has said that it can test 270 individuals per day. (April 28)
  • Governor Kelly announced that residents may find the latest Kansas COVID-19 news and information at covid.ks.gov. (April 27)
  • Governor Kelly sent a letter to Kansas’ federal delegation asking for additional federal support to fight COVID-19 spreading. (April 24)
  • Governor Kelly announced that the state was relaxing coronavirus testing guidelines to allow testing for Kansans who do not have a fever but show other COVID-19 symptoms. (April 21)

ECONOMIC RESPONSE

Essential Service Designations:

  • Governor Kelly issued a stay-at-home order until April 19. The order also stipulates that the state will use the Kansas Essential Functions Framework (KEFF) to identify and continue essential functions, which includes seeking medical assistance, buying groceries, and refilling gas. (March 28)

Labor & Workforce Guidance, Standards and Regulations:

  • Governor Kelly signed an executive order that suspended physician supervision or collaboration requirements for some medical licenses, such as advanced practice registered nurses, physician assistants, and licensed practical nurses. Among other provisions, the order also permitted out-of-state health care providers – who are in good standing with their respective states – to practice in the state without a Kansas license. (April 22)
  • Governor Kelly signed an executive order that extended renewal deadlines for licenses, certificates, or registrations needed to work in adult-care facilities and suspended fire inspections for “new or renewal [Kansas Department of Aging and Disability Services]-licensed facilities, units, or locations during the State of Disaster Emergency.” (April 15)
  • Governor Kelly reportedly announced that she planned to extend her executive order closing nonessential Kansas businesses until May 3. (April 15)
  • Governor Kelly signed an executive order that suspended several regulations for motor carriers. Among other provisions, the order allowed carriers to carry 10 percent more than their licensed weight. (April 13)
    • Governor Kelly signed an executive order to extend this executive order until June 15. (May 15)
  • Governor Kelly signed an executive order that allowed notaries and witnesses to work remotely. (April 9)
  • Governor Kelly signed an executive order that extended renewal deadlines for occupational or professional licenses that have expired, or will expire, during the pandemic. Licenses will remain valid for the duration of the disaster declaration. (April 9)
  • Governor Kelly announced that state government operations will resume “in a reduced fashion” on April 6. (April 3)
  • Governor Kelly announced that weekly unemployment benefits for all unemployed Kansans will increase by $600 per week for a maximum of four months. (March 31)
  • Governor Kelly signed an executive order that waived the waiting week requirement for unemployment benefits, suspended the requirement that Kansans who receive unemployment benefits must “actively seek work each week,” and mandated that employers must notify employees if they are eligible for unemployment insurance “at the time of separation” from the employer. (March 31)
  • Governor Kelly signed a House Substitute for Senate Bill 27, which expanded unemployment eligibility for workers who applied since January 1, 2020. (March 19)

Economic Stimulus & Relief:

  • Governor Kelly signed a disaster declaration that will allow the Kansas Division of Emergency Management to provide several resources to residents, including providing medical and non-medical Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) to hospitals and first responders, protecting against food shortages, and conducting community-based testing, among several other provisions. (May 26)
  • Governor Kelly announced the creation of the Strengthening People and Revitalizing Kansas (SPARK) Taskforce, which will lead the state’s economic recovery. The Taskforce will be charged with distributing funds received from the CARES Act, among other responsibilities. (May 19)
  • Governor Kelly reportedly announced that the state received an $8.9 million grant from the federal government to “help strengthen early childhood services in Kansas.” (May 8)
  • The Kansas Corporation Commission reportedly announced that it will extend its emergency order that suspended disconnection of utilities due to nonpayment until May 31. (May 5)
  • Governor Kelly announced that she planned to extend the state’s disaster declaration, which will allow Kansas to continue to receive federal funds. (April 30)
  • Governor Kelly announced that the Kansas Department of Labor will “be processing more than $3.4 million in [unemployment] benefits today.” (April 23)
  • Governor Kelly reportedly announced that the Kansas Department of Labor has extended the deadline for Kansans to claim unemployment benefits from 16 to 26 weeks. (April 21)
  • President Trump has approved Kansas’ request for a federal disaster declaration, which will allow the state to receive more federal funds to fight the virus. (March 30)
  • Governor Kelly signed Senate Bill 66, the FY2020-2021 budget bill. The budget called for allocating $65 million for coronavirus response efforts, among other provisions. (March 25)
  • Governor Kelly signed an executive order temporarily banning certain foreclosures and evictions. Specifically, the executive order prohibited evictions when “all defaults or violations of the rental agreement are caused by financial hardships due to COVID-19” and required that “a financial hardship indirectly or directly caused by COVID-19 be the reason a homeowner or renter can’t make payments.” (March 23)
  • Governor Kelly signed an executive order that extended the tax filing deadline to July 15, 2020. (March 23)
  • Governor Kelly signed an executive order that prevented waste removal entities from “cancelling or suspending commercial or residential waste or recycling removal services for Kansas residences and businesses as a result of nonpayment due to significant loss of income or increase in expenses resulting from the COVID-19 pandemic.” (March 23)
  • Governor Kelly signed an executive order preventing Kansas utility providers from disconnecting electrical, natural gas, water, internet service, and telecommunications utilities from Kansas citizens due to non-payment. (March 17)

Business Support & Resources:

  • Governor Kelly signed an executive order that will temporarily suspend certain regulations related to shared work programs. (May 14)
  • Governor Kelly announced that Kansas applied for disaster assistance loans from the US Small Business Administration, which could make loans of up to $2 million available to Kansas small businesses in need of assistance. (March 20)
  • Governor Kelly announced the allocation of $5 million to create the Hospitality Industry Relief Emergency Fund to “short-term, zero-interest loans for Kansas’ hospitality sector during the pandemic.” (March 20)
  • Governor Kelly signed an executive order temporarily suspending certain commercial motor carrier rules and regulations to help expedite delivery of resources needed to fight COVID-19. (March 22)

SOCIAL RESTRICTIONS

Shelter-In-Place Orders:

  • The Kansas Department of Health and Environment has reportedly recommended that all Kansans who traveled to Lake of the Ozarks (MO) over the Memorial Day weekend and did not take protective measures should undergo a voluntary two-week self-quarantine. (May 26)
  • Governor Kelly health reminders for residents to enjoy Memorial Day weekend while still minimizing risk of COVID-19 spreading. (May 22)
  • Governor Kelly signed an executive order moving the state to Phase 2 of her plan to reopen the Kansas economy. Beginning Friday, May 22, casinos, theaters, bowling alleys, and museums will reopen and the state’s mass gatherings ban will be increased to 15 people, up from 10. (May 19)
  • Governor Kelly signed an executive order to establish the next phase to reopen Kansas’ economy. Phase “1.5,” which will begin May 18, calls for reopening nail salons, barber shops, hair salons, tanning salons, tattoo parlors and other personal service businesses where “close contact cannot be avoided,” gyms and health clubs (though in-person classes are not permitted), among other provisions. (May 14)
  • Governor Kelly announced that she plans to issue further information later this week regarding the next phase to reopen the state’s economy. (May 13)
  • To lead Kansas’s recovery efforts, Governor Kelly appointed Cheryl Harrison-Lee as the Kansas Recovery Office’s executive director and Lyle Butler as its chair. (May 7)
  • Some retailers, dine-in restaurants, and offices opened Monday, May 4, pursuant to the Governor’s “Ad Astra” plan to reopen the Kansas economy. (May 4)
  • Governor Kelly signed an executive order to implement Phase 1 of her “Ad Astra” plan to reopen the Kansas economy. The order, which called for Phase 1 of the plan to begin on May 4, nullified Executive Orders 20-16, 20-24, and 20-25, continued the state’s mass gatherings ban, encouraged CDC-advised social distancing measures, and recommended telework when possible. (April 30)
  • Governor Kelly unveiled her “Ad Astra” plan to gradually reopen the Kansas economy. The plan contains four phases: Phase 1 will occur on May 4 or after, Phase 2 will take place on May 18 or after, Phase 3 will occur on June 1 or after, and the Phase Out will take place June 15 or later. (April 30)
  • Governor Kelly signed an executive order that extended the state’s stay-at-home order until May 3. (April 16)
  • Governor Kelly signed an executive order that issued a stay-at-home order until April 19. The order also stipulates that the state will use the Kansas Essential Functions Framework (KEFF) to identify and continue essential functions, which includes seeking medical assistance, buying groceries, and refilling gas. (March 28)

Curfews:

  • No records found.

Social-Distancing Guidelines:

  • Governor Kelly signed an executive order that extended the state’s order limiting mass gatherings to 10 people until May 1. (April 17)
  • Governor Kelly replaced Executive Order #20-14 with Executive Order #20-18 to include religious institutions in the state’s mass gatherings ban. Under the order, religious institutions will not be permitted to have gatherings of more than 10 people. (April 7)
    • The Kansas Legislative Coordinating Council voted to nullify this order. (April 8)
    • However, the Kansas Supreme Court ruled that the Legislative Coordinating Council could not revoke Executive Order #20-18. (April 11)
    • A US District Court judge later issued a temporary restraining order against parts of the order that he argued infringed First Amendment rights to freely exercise religion. (April 18)
  • The Kansas Department of Health and Environment has added Connecticut to its travel quarantine list, requiring anyone traveling from Connecticut to Kansas to self-quarantine for 14 days upon arrival. (April 6)
  • Kansas has also instituted mandatory 14-day home quarantines for citizens who have traveled to a state “with known widespread community transmission (currently California, Florida, New York, and Washington state)” since March 15, citizens who have traveled on a cruise ship, river cruise, or internationally since March 15, and citizens who have been in “close contact” to a laboratory-confirmed case of COVID-19. (March 18)
  • Governor Kelly signed an executive order limiting mass gatherings to 10 people. (March 24)

Delivery Services:

  • Governor Kelly signed an executive order that allowed Kansans to carry out alcoholic beverages and permitted establishments with a class A club license or a class B club license to sell liquor in nonoriginal containers. (April 22)

SCHOOL CLOSURES

K-12:

  • Governor Kelly signed an executive order that, among other provisions, will permit in-person graduation ceremonies with a maximum of ten people in a room, gymnasium, or facility as long as social distancing is maintained. Additionally, the order will allow outdoor drive-through graduation ceremonies, with a maximum of 10 individuals permitted “in the same area outside of their vehicles at a time.” (May 14)
  • All Kansas school buildings are closed for the rest of the school year. Kansas students must take part in “Continuous Learning” by completing weekly assignments and video check-ins. (March 19)
  • Governor Kelly signed House Substitute for Senate Bill 142 to expand the state’s ability to waive educational instructional hour requirements and called on school districts to pay all hourly employees during school shutdowns caused by natural disasters. (March 19)

State Higher Education:

  • Kansas State, University of Kansas, and Wichita State University have announced that they will only hold online classes for the remainder of the semester (March 20.)

Giving Oportunities

April 22, 2020

Governor’s office is referring companies interested in helping to this site for methods to donate and volunteer.

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