COVID-19 in Colorado
Common Sense Policy Roundtable will provide frequent updates on this page to help keep the Colorado community informed with the latest data and links to valid COVID-19 resources.
These reports and findings do not stand in judgment of any policy, any decision or any action aimed at protecting the vital public health interests of Colorado and the nation amid this crisis. Aggressive steps to slow the spread of the Coronavirus are indisputably critical. Colorado’s political leaders have, by in large, approached these decisions in a bipartisan way, and with sober and sensible resolve. This report does, however, frame the nature of the trade-offs for the people of Colorado if sweeping policies that prevent large segments of the citizenry from working stay in effect over-time. It has been said — to govern is to choose. As policy makers weigh these difficult decisions in the coming weeks, this report gives color to both the systemic and the highly-personal impact of one range of scenarios on the people of this state.
Earlier today, both the Colorado Legislative Council Staff (LCS) and the Governor’s Office of State Planning and Budget (OSPB) released an updated forecast for the state’s economy and budget outlook. You can view the CO Leg Council Staff report and presentation slides...
As all counties in Colorado have now progressed from stay-at-home orders to safer-at-home guidelines, two questions are front of mind. Will there be another increase in cases of COVID-19 that again threatens to overwhelm our health care system? And how much of the...
Last week lawmakers in Illinois wrote a letter requesting a $41 Billion federal bailout to help shore up their state budget woes. Roughly ¼ of that request, or $10 Billion, was to go directly to the state pensions fund. For years, Illinois has suffered from declining...
4.27 The Increase in PERA’s Unfunded Liabilities Due to COVID-19 Are Likely Bigger than the Reductions in the State Budget
Newly released modeling from the Reason Foundation indicates that if PERA experiences a -10% annual return on their investment portfolio, it would add $7 Billion to its current $30 Billion unfunded liability. To pay off this increase in the unfunded liabilities, a...
The US economic system has ground to a near halt and the potential economic and fiscal impacts are just beginning to be understood.
Despite recent estimates forecasting the state will face a $1 Billion reduction in revenue from previous projections for the next budget cycle, it appears that those estimates will only be revised downward.
The COVID Slide – The Impact of COVID-19 on Education featuring Luke Ragland and Brenda Bautsch-Dickhoner
Our Common Sense Digest guests unpack the problems and offer possible solutions to the issues that will confront all Colorado students mere months from now.
This episode of Common Sense Digest shares the latest facts and figures concerning the continuing economic impact of COVID-19.
In this episode of the Common Sense Digest, our Chairman Earl Wright leads a discussion about the topic at the forefront of our collective consciousness: COVID-19.
SPECIAL UPDATES & WEBINARS
Webinar- Economic Impacts of COVID-19 on the Colorado State Budget
Check out our most recent webinar with CSPR’s Director of Policy & Research, Chris Brown, providing additional details on the Economic Impacts of COVID-19 on the Colorado State Budget.
Special Update from CSPR Director of Policy & Research On Unemployment Numbers
Earlier today, the Colorado Department of Labor and Employment released the latest figures related to new unemployment insurance claims in Colorado. The figures now indicate that over the past three weeks, 4% of Colorado’s labor force has applied for unemployment insurance, an important life-line for those who have lost their jobs as a result of this crisis.
For the time being, the numbers suggest Colorado is faring better than many other parts of the country as the last three weeks of unemployment insurance claims nationally show 10% of the US labor force sought unemployment benefits.
Webinar- Economic Impacts of COVID-19 on Colorado’s Economy
Check out our most recent webinar with CSPR’s Director of Policy & Research, Chris Brown, providing additional details on the Economic Impacts of COVID-19 in Colorado.
INFORMATION & RESOURCES
The Governor issued a statewide Stay-at-Home Order effective beginning at 6:00 am Thursday, March 26 through April 26, 2020. This Order will be lifted on Sunday, April 27th, and the state will transition into the next phase of living with COVID-19, referred to as the Safer-At-Home phase.
A more detailed explanation of what this order means can be found here.
The goal of Safer-At-Home is to still maintain 60-65% social distancing, but also allow the economy to start working again for individuals to earn a living. It is not a requirement for businesses to open, but some may if they choose under the guidelines. More specific guidance on this phase means:
- Vulnerable populations and older adults must stay home unless absolutely necessary.
- Gatherings of more than 10 people are prohibited.
- Critical businesses will remain open with strict precautions already in place.
- Retail businesses may open for curbside delivery and phased-in public opening with strict precautions.
- Nightclubs, gyms and spas will remain closed.
- Elective medical and dental procedures begin, with strict precautions to ensure adequate personal protective equipment and the ability to meet critical care needs.
- Personal services (salons, tattoo parlors, dog grooming, personal training, etc.) will open with strict precautions.
- K-12 schools and postsecondary institutions will resume normal in-person instruction for the remainder of the school year.
- Starting on May 4, up to 50% of staff can work in person, with social distancing in place, but teleworking is still strongly encouraged.
- The state is not changing requirements for nursing homes and other senior care facilities. There will continue to be restrictions on visiting residents.
Further guidance is forthcoming on what kinds of restrictions and requirements need to be in place in order for businesses to open safely.
Local governments will also be allowed to either be more restrictive than the state, or petition to reopen more fully than the state. In order for local governments to relax guidelines, they will need to demonstrate proof of 14 consecutive days of decline of infection of COVID-19 in the county. An application must be submitted to CDPHE that includes a written COVID-19 suppression plan approved by the appropriate local public health authority, all hospitals within the jurisdiction and elected leadership.
See this link, courtesy of the Colorado Municipal League, for more specific information on actions individual localities are taking.
The Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment is maintaining a COVID-19 website where you can find additional resources and answers to commonly asked questions.
CAPITOL & LEGISLATIVE UPDATES
Initiative & Title Board Tracking:
Six briefs have been filed with the Supreme Court on the issue of whether the 120-days of the Regular Session of the General Assembly must be consecutive or not. Read more here in this Colorado Politics story has five of the briefs.
Colorado General Assembly: Forecast March 2020
Colorado Governor Jared Polis: Colorado Economy
RELIEF FUND RESOURCES
Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act (H.R. 748)
Help Colorado Now: Hosted by the State of Colorado and Mile High United Way, relief funds and volunteer efforts through Help Colorado Now. This effort has raised $7.7 million and more than 9,000 volunteers have signed up, including 2,000 health care volunteers. Funds raised will be used to support the needs of communities impacted by COVID-19 in both response and recovery. Organizations helping with the response to COVID-19 are now eligible to apply for funds.
From US Chamber on Paycheck Protection Program:
From NCLS on state funding:
From Politico on stimulus bill:
From City & County of Denver small business relief fund:
AEI’s National coronavirus response: A road map to reopening