Pennsylvania - COVID-19 Covered

Pennsylvania

Total Cases: 197,370 (October 25)
Fatalities: 8,636 (October 25)
Testing:
  • Approved COVID-19 testing sites across Pennsylvania can be found here.  
  • Pennsylvanians can now use the COVID Alert PA app when traveling to New York, New Jersey or Delaware. (October 2) 

ECONOMIC RESPONSE

Essential Service Designations:

  • Governor Wolf announced that the Office of State Fire Commissioner (OSFC) will be awarding $50 million worth of grant funding to fire, rescue, and EMS across the commonwealth to offset expenses related to the COVID-19 pandemic. (October 8)  
  • Governor Wolf announced that 23 awardees will receive $10 million in grant funding through the COVID-19 Vaccines, Treatments and Therapies (CV-VTT) program to support the rapid advancement of vaccines, treatments and therapies by qualified biotechnology entities in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. (August 27)  
  • Governor Wolf announced the availability of $50 million in grant funding to help employers provide hazard pay to employees in life-sustaining occupations during the COVID-19 pandemic. (July 16 
  • Following his order for all non-life sustaining businesses to close, Governor Wolf issued a comprehensive list dictating which businesses may continue physical operations. (March 21)

Labor & Workforce Guidance, Standards and Regulations:

  • Governor Wolf signed a bill that provides a temporary freeze on cost-of-living salary adjustments for certain public officials, including the governor, lieutenant governor, state treasurer, auditor general, attorney general, commissioners of the Pennsylvania Public Utility Commission, heads of departments, judges, and members of the General Assembly due to the COVID-19 pandemic. (October 16)  
  • Governor Wolf directed the Department of Labor & Industry to submit an application for President Trump’s temporary Lost Wages Assistance grant funds to provide an additional $300 per week in supplemental payments to some Pennsylvanians receiving unemployment benefits. (August 21) 
  • Governor Wolf announced the recipients of $50 million in grants to help employers provide hazard pay to employees in life-sustaining industries during the COVID-19 pandemic. (August 17 
  • The Pennsylvania Department of Health updated dental health care guidance for dental clinics reopening. (June 3) 
  • Pennsylvania Secretary of Health Dr. Rachel Levine signed an order that outlined protections for employees dealing with in-person customers. The order required that businesses provide masks to employees, stagger work start and stop times, provide sufficient space for employees to have breaks and meals 6 feet from each other, and, if possible, conduct meetings and trainings virtually. (April 15) 

Economic Stimulus & Relief:

  • Governor Wolf announced the investment of $181 million for 16 drinking water, wastewater and non-point source projects across 12 counties through the Pennsylvania Infrastructure Investment Authority (PENNVEST). (October 21) 
  • The Pennsylvania Housing Finance Agency is improving the COVID Relief Mortgage and Rental Assistance Grant Program to help more renters and homeowners remain in their homes. Effective October 17, landlords and mortgagees will have a new option to reach agreements with renters and homeowners for repayment of rent and mortgage payments above the program’s $750 monthly cap. (October 13)  
  • Governor Wolf will distribute more than $117 million in CARES Act funding to child care providers across Pennsylvania. (August 28)  
  • Governor Wolf sent letters to the House and Senate urging the legislature to temporarily extend the existing moratorium and fix defects in Act 24 of 2020. (August 25)  
  • Governor Wolf announced nearly $19 million in funding awards to assist in mitigating the impacts of the coronavirus on homeless families and individuals. (July 10 
  • Governor Wolf signed a new executive order that protects homeowners and renters from eviction or foreclosure until August 31. (July 9 
  • Governor Wolf announced Plan for Pennsylvania  a three-tier program that provides Pennsylvanians financial relief along with the eventual public reopening and public recovery. (April 17) 
  • Governor Wolf announced that the Pennsylvania Department of Labor & Industry implemented new federal unemployment compensation benefits provided by the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act. The package provides an additional $600 per week as well as makes self-employed workers eligible for benefits and extends unemployment compensation (UC) benefits for an additional 13 weeks. (April 10) 
  • The Pennsylvania Public Utility Commission chairman signed an emergency order banning terminations of utilitiesincluding electric, natural gas, water, wastewater, telecommunication, and steam. (PA GOV)  

 

Business Support & Resources:

  • Governor Wolf announced a plan to waive liquor license fees to provide financial relief to restaurants and bars, which have faced significant financial impacts during the COVID-19 public health crisis. (October 22) 
  • The Department of Health updated its travel recommendations to add Minnesota, Montana, Nevada, and Wyoming and remove Georgia from the list of states recommended for domestic travelers to quarantine for 14 days upon return to Pennsylvania. (October 5) 
  • Governor Wolf announced the launch of the COVID-19 exposure notification mobile app, COVID Alert PA, to help fight the spread of the virus. (September 22) 
  • Governor Wolf and Health Secretary Dr. Rachel Levine signed new orders enabling restaurants to increase indoor occupancy to 50 percent starting Monday, September 21. (September 17 
  • Hawaii, North Carolina, and Texas were removed from the list of states with high amounts of COVID-19 cases and require travelers to quarantine for 14 days. (September 14 
  • Governor Wolf announced that restaurants may increase indoor occupancy to 50 percent starting September 21. (September 8) 
  • Governor Wolf signed a second renewal of his 90-day disaster declaration for the COVID-19 pandemic. (September 1 
  • Governor Wolf’s COVID-19 Response Task Force for Health Disparity released a report containing six policy recommendations related to housing, criminal justice, food insecurity, health disparity, education, and economic opportunities. (August 13) 
  • This interactive map indicates what phase of reopening (Red, Yellow, and Green) each Pennsylvania county is in, and outlines the guidelines for each phase. (June 19) 
  • Governor Wolf signed an executive order authorizing state agencies to conduct administrative proceedings remotely. (July 10) 
  • The Wolf administration released updated frequently asked questions (FAQs) about summer recreation, camps and pools. (July 9 
  • Governor Wolf and Secretary of Health Dr. Rachel Levine signed amended Green Phase orders for the Lebanon County, the last Pennsylvania county to move to green. (July 2 
  • Secretary of Health Dr. Rachel Levine signed a new order requiring individuals to wear masks whenever they leave their homes. (July 1 
  • The last county in Pennsylvania to enter the Green Phase, Lebanon County, was approved to do so on July 3. (June 26) 
  • Governor Wolf released reopening guidelines made up of three-phases to determine when counties and/or regions are ready to begin easing some restrictions on work, congregate settings, and social interactions. (June 17) 

SOCIAL RESTRICTIONS

Reopening:

  • The Department of Health updated its travel recommendations to remove Texas from the list of states recommended for domestic travelers to quarantine for 14 days upon return to Pennsylvania. (October 19) 
  • The Department of Health updated its travel recommendations to add Minnesota, Montana, Nevada, and Wyoming and remove Georgia from the list of states recommended for domestic travelers to quarantine for 14 days upon return to Pennsylvania. (October 5) 
  • The Department of Health updated its travel recommendations to add Kentucky, Texas and Utah and remove Louisiana from the list of states recommended for domestic travelers returning from to quarantine for 14 days upon return to Pennsylvania. (September 28 
  • Governor Wolf announced the launch of the COVID-19 exposure notification mobile app, COVID Alert PA, to help fight the spread of the virus. (September 22) 
  • The Department of Health updated its travel recommendations to add Nebraska and Wisconsin to the list of states recommended for domestic travelers to quarantine for 14 days upon return to Pennsylvania. Nevada was removed from the list. (September 21 
  • Governor Wolf and Health Secretary Dr. Rachel Levine signed new orders enabling restaurants to increase indoor occupancy to 50 percent starting Monday, September 21. (September 17)  
  • Hawaii, North Carolina, and Texas were removed from the list of states with high amounts of COVID-19 cases and require travelers to quarantine for 14 days. (September 14)  
  • Governor Wolf announced that restaurants may increase indoor occupancy to 50 percent starting September 21. (September 8) 
  • The Department of Health updated its travel recommendations to remove California and add North Carolina to the list of states recommended for domestic travelers returning from to quarantine for 14 days upon return to Pennsylvania. (September 8)  
  • Governor Wolf signed a second renewal of his 90-day disaster declaration for the COVID-19 pandemic. (September 1)  
  • The Department of Health updated its travel recommendations to add Hawaii, Illinois, and South Dakota to the list of states recommended for domestic travelers to quarantine for 14 days upon return to Pennsylvania. (August 31) 
  • The Department of Health updated its travel recommendations to remove Arizona from the list of states recommended for domestic travelers to quarantine for 14 days upon return to Pennsylvania. (August 24)  
  • The Department of Health updated its travel recommendations to remove Nebraska, North Carolina, Utah, and Wisconsin from the list of states recommended for returning domestic travelers to quarantine for 14 days upon return to Pennsylvania. (August 14)  
  • Governor Wolf’s COVID-19 Response Task Force for Health Disparity released a report containing six policy recommendations related to housing, criminal justice, food insecurity, health disparity, education, and economic opportunities. (August 13) 
  • This interactive map indicates what phase of reopening (Red, Yellow, and Green) each Pennsylvania county is in, and outlines the guidelines for each phase. (June 19) 
  • The Pennsylvania Department of Health updated its travel recommendations to remove Delaware from the list of states recommended for domestic travelers returning from to quarantine for 14 days upon return to Pennsylvania. (July 17)  
  • Governor Wolf signed an executive order authorizing state agencies to conduct administrative proceedings remotely. (July 10) 
  • The Wolf administration released updated frequently asked questions (FAQs) about summer recreation, camps and pools. (July 9)  
  • Governor Wolf and Secretary of Health Dr. Rachel Levine signed amended Green Phase orders for the Lebanon County, the last Pennsylvania county to move to green. (July 2)  
  • Secretary of Health Dr. Rachel Levine signed a new order requiring individuals to wear masks whenever they leave their homes. (July 1)  
  • The last county in Pennsylvania to enter the Green Phase, Lebanon County, was approved to do so on July 3. (June 26) 
  • Governor Wolf released reopening guidelines made up of three-phases to determine when counties and/or regions are ready to begin easing some restrictions on work, congregate settings, and social interactions. (June 17) 

SCHOOL PLANNING

K-12:

  • Governor Wolf vetoed House Bill 2787, which would have mandated that school fall activities be under the sole jurisdiction of local school districts. (September 21 
  • Governor Wolf is dedicating $15 million for schools to secure broadband, mobile hot spots, and other platforms that increase equitable access to remote learning. (September 10)  
  • Governor Wolf is dedicating approximately $17 million to help 220 local education agencies (LEAs), including school districts, to improve educational services for approximately 180,000 students at schools designated for Additional Targeted Support and Improvement (ATSI) under the federal Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA). (August 25)  
  • Governor Wolf will provide approximately $20 million to 678 local education agencies, including school districts, to provide education services for students with disabilities who may have been negatively impacted by COVID-19 mitigation efforts and may face additional challenges throughout the academic year. (August 20 
  • The Pennsylvania Departments of Health and Education have recommended that Pre-K–12 schools and recreational youth sports should be postponed until at least January 1 to protect children and teens from COVID-19. (August 6) 
  • Governor Wolf announced $3 million for Preschool Early Intervention Programs to purchase personal protective equipment and other pandemic-related supplies. (July 28 
  • Education Secretary Pedro Rivera announced that schools in counties that have reached either the “Green” or “Yellow” Phase of the state’s COVID-19 reopening plan could resume in-person instruction on July 1. (June 3) 

State Higher Education:

  • A list of Pennsylvania universities and colleges planning to reopen in the fall can be found here. 
  • Governor Wolf will dedicate approximately $28 million to postsecondary institutions and adult basic education providers to assist in implementing public health and safety plans that can help them resume operations in the fall. (August 3 
  • Pennsylvania’s 14 state universities are planning to reopen in the fall, but the Pennsylvania State System of Higher Education’s Board of Governors is giving individual presidents authority to work on details for their campuses. (June 10) 

Produced by Marathon Strategies, an independent PR firm that delivers intelligent communications and research solutions. For information, email Phil Singer at COVID-19@marathonstrategies.com