It’s been a little over a month since states started enacting social distancing and stay-at-home orders.
State leaders are starting to determine whether their states are ready to reopen their economies and slowly lift restrictions.
Several states are forming regional coalitions as a way to work together and stimulate economies at the same time.
Here are some governors who have already decided to team up:
On the East Coast, the Northeastern states of New York, New Jersey, Connecticut, Pennsylvania, Delaware, Rhode Island and Massachusetts are coordinating to reopen the economy.
Each state will name health and economic officials to join the governors’ chiefs of staffs to a working group, set to begin discussions Tuesday.
“Now it is time to start opening the valve slowly and carefully while watching the infection rate meter so we don’t trigger a second wave of new infections,” New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo said. “This is not a light switch that we can just flick on and everything goes back to normal - we have to come up with a smart, consistent strategy to restart the systems we shut down and get people back to work.”
The group will come up with “parameters to go forward,” Cuomo said, and while they may not agree on every aspect of the strategy, finding areas where they can coordinate will be important, especially given the states’ close economic, health and transportation ties.
Calling the commuter thoroughfare from his state of Connecticut to New York the “Covid corridor,” Gov. Ned Lamont said it was vital that “you don’t pull the trigger too early,” but applauded the partnership.
“The reality is this virus doesn’t care about state borders, and our response shouldn’t either,” Rhode Island Gov. Gina Raimondo said.
The governors of California, Oregon and Washington agreed on a regional pact to reopen the economy and fight the pandemic.
“In the coming weeks, the West Coast will flip the script on COVID-19 – with our states acting in close coordination and collaboration to ensure the virus can never spread wildly in our communities,” said a joint statement from California Gov. Gavin Newsom, Oregon Gov. Kate Brown and Washington Gov. Jay Inslee.
The public health leaders in the three states will focus on four main goals, the statement read. These goals include: Protecting vulnerable populations at risk such as those in nursing homes, ensuring care for those who may contract Covid-19, mitigating the non-direct health impacts of the virus on disadvantaged communities and protecting the public by ensuring the lifting of restrictions comes with adequate testing.
“The West Coast is guided by science. We issued stay at home orders early to keep the public healthy. We’ll open our economies with that same guiding principle,” Newsom tweeted Monday.
Inslee also tweeted that “any successful lifting of interventions must include a robust system for testing, tracking and isolating.”
“The states will work together to share best practices and coordinate a framework to get it done,” Inslee tweeted.
Upper Great Plains
Minnesota Gov. Tim Walz told reporters Monday he’d contact the governors of Michigan and Wisconsin to begin thinking regionally in terms of opening up the economies in each state. Nothing has been confirmed yet.