COVID-19: Local Government Response and Resource Bank
This is a curated list of city examples, resources, and commentary that may offer helpful insights to local governments.
Content is organized in five sections: *(1) Data Tools & Resources Developed by Cities; *(2) Resources for Local Government; *(3) Local Actions (organized by policy decision); (4) Op-Eds & Commentary Specific to Local Government; and (5) COVID-19 Guidelines & Updates.
The lists are updated regularly. Starred items are new for the week. Starred sections above indicate there is new content in the section. For archived items, click here.
We encourage you to join the conversation and stay updated on how local governments are taking action by following us on Twitter. From our community to yours, be safe and take care.
The following list has been updated as of June 4, 2020.
Data Tools and Resources Developed By Cities
This section lists examples of data dashboards, data collection channels, and other tools that cities have created to help manage, inform, and communicate about their coronavirus responses. If you have a data tool that your city is using that you’d like to share, please email email@example.com.
- Baltimore, MD: COVID-19 city operations data tracking — Provides concrete steps and information about how Baltimore City set up data tracking systems to support the city’s management of service delivery and emergency food access during the city’s coronavirus response. *Plus, Baltimore City’s COVID-19 Data Dashboard. This dashboard and central information page includes total counts of cases and death by demographics and mapped by zip code. Also includes information in other languages, a map of food distribution sites, as well as resources for parents, older adults and caregivers.
- Boston, MA: The city’s Department of Innovation and Technology’s Citywide Analytics Team developed and launched two dashboards — the first includes a day-by-day breakdown of the spread of COVID-19 in Massachusetts and tracks daily updates from the state’s public health department for the number of COVID-19 cases, and the second includes information specific to the city, including total daily cases, recovered cases and total cases over time.
- Cambridge, MA: The city’s COVID-19 Data Center site, developed as a collaboration between data analytics, communications, and subject matter experts, is being used “to keep residents, staff, and decision makers informed about pandemic trends in our city.” Cambridge’s data site includes a user-friendly navigation menu and its data visualizations include how the city compares to state and national trends.
- Chicago, IL: The “Chi COVID Coach” is a mobile-friendly, web-based health app developed by the City in partnership with Google and MTX. Chicago residents are asked to register their information through the app, even if they do not have symptoms, to allow the Chicago Department of Public Health (CDPH) to communicate directly with them and provide them with important information and guidance. Data collected by CDPH through this app will only be used for “public health purposes related to COVID-19.”
- Cincinnati, OH: The city’s Office of Performance and Data Analytics (OPDA) is “collecting, aggregating, and distilling information daily to [city leaders] to ensure effective tactics and strategies and effective repurposing/deployment of resources.” The reports are posted daily for the public to access, including the COVID-19 Daily Response Report and the Impacted City Services Dashboard, and CincyInsights COVID-19 Case Tracker (by zip code). *New: Food Distribution Information — a data map to help residents find food donation and distribution sites within a mile radius of their residences.
- Dallas, TX: The city’s Office of Innovation constructed this dashboard “to provide the public with a regional snapshot of COVID-19 cases in the DFW region,” linked from the city’s COVID-19 information page with city-specific data and information. In addition, Mayor Eric Johnson has ordered that local hospitals will be required to provide daily reports of the number of beds, ICU beds and ventilators that are available.
- Kansas City, MO: Surveying Our New Work From Home Employees — Methodology and the actual questions that DataKC, the city’s central data team, used to conduct a survey of its city employees about working remotely. Includes findings! *NEW: DataKC’s newest blogpost, Moving Forward with Work From Home for City Employees, includes the third survey & its results, and links to the first two surveys. DataKC is surveying its employees bi-weekly in order to add new questions that “dig deeper into the work from home experiences of our employees during the COVID-19 pandemic,” and presenting the results of each survey to the City’s management team for review and discussion.
- King County, WA: A user-friendly data dashboard that provides the public access to data, analysis, and information in areas such as education, food, health, housing, transportation, and public safety. Additionally, this interactive COVID-19 Vulnerable Communities Data Tool was developed specifically for “communities in King County that may be more impacted by the new coronavirus (COVID-19).”
- Los Angeles, CA: The Mayor’s Office created this centralized online information portal that provides a dashboard counter of coronavirus cases, city updates & key resources, and a searchable map of critical information and resources by county, as well as a direct link to L.A. County’s Public Health agency’s data tracker by city and community. *Daily data reports produced for the Mayor and his senior staff by the city’s Innovation Team to assist with the city’s COVID-19 response are also publicly available. *Plus, a Work From Home Resources portal for city employees that the city built to allow 12,000 city employees to telecommute. *Also: this site provides well-organized, one-click access to key information portals such as free testing sites, food centers for seniors and students, economic and housing support services in response to COVID-19, and an interactive map of emergency resource centers.
- State of New Jersey: The State’s Office of Innovation developed the Emergency Assistance Eligibility Wizard “to make it easy” for NJ’s small businesses to understand what financial support programs are available to them, focusing on newly announced State Emergency Assistance programs and the federal SBA disaster loan program. Currently in beta version, the State plans to update the tool regularly “as new federal, state, local, and philanthropic programs become available.” **While not a city-developed resource, we are including this as an example of a data tool cities can develop to assist small businesses in their community. Contact U.S. Digital Response to be matched with expert volunteers who can help accelerate or build tools like this for your city.**
- New York, NY: New York City’s Department of Information Technology and Telecommunications launched a website to crowdsource COVID-19 information to get a better picture of where potential COVID-19 patients or people in self-quarantine are. The NYC COVID-19 Engagement Portal collects information directly from residents to help enable the city “to share information with you and members of the public about COVID-19, and to help inform the City’s response to areas affected by COVID-19.”
- San Francisco, CA: San Francisco’s Department of Health launched a COVID-19 information page that centralizes all relevant COVID content, links to the city’s data tracker, and includes a map of pit stop and hand washing stations in the city. The city’s COVID-19 Data Tracker tracks cases, testing, and hospitalizations, hospital capacity. Cases are reported by zip code and by various demographics, including gender, race/ethnicity, and age group, and response data includes patient counts by bed type.
- Tempe, AZ: The city set up an Innovation in Advancing Community Health and Fighting COVID-19 site to provide data and insights related stopping the spread of the virus. In particular, the site features a dashboard that provides a look at emerging research using the city’s use of wastewater data “to understand challenges, inform strategies and evaluate outcomes and community impacts.”
Resources for Local Government from the WWC Network & Others
- *From What Works Cities and the Fines & Fees Justice Center: A two-part webinar for cities and states interested in taking steps to reduce budget dependency on fees and make fines fair and proportionate. Participants will learn about best practice policies and programs, identify a wide range of measures that cities can and should immediately implement in light of COVID-19 and during re-opening processes, and learn directly from experts and leaders in cities. June 3 and June 10 at 3PM ET. Register here.
- From Opportunity Insights: Track the economic impacts of COVID-19 on people, businesses, and communities across the U.S. in real time through Opportunity Insights’ Economic Tracker. For the latest research from Opportunity Insights, sign up here.
- From U.S. Digital Response: For local governments in need of added/surge data and digital capacity, tap into a source of 4,000+ qualified, vetted professionals willing to help and skilled in technology, data, design, and operations. Fill out the intake form here to be matched; click here for city project examples shared during the What Works Cities-hosted webinar, and here for a round-up of more city projects.
- From Bloomberg Philanthropies: Key takeaways and resources (including worksheets) from each video session of the Coronavirus Local Response Initiative. Plus, the Ash Center’s easy-to-digest summaries: Crisis Leadership Essentials, Crisis Communications, Addressing Stress and Mental Health, From Conflict to Collaboration, Leading Through a Multi-Stage Crisis. *For a running list of questions asked by mayors during the sessions and answered by experts, click here.
- From COVID Exit Strategy: How We Open Safely — An interactive map with a simple red, yellow, green scale to show key metrics and the progress every state is making towards achieving the federal gating criteria for re-opening. Cities can use to apply their own data to the gating criteria and compare to their state.
- From Bloomberg Cities: 3 principles for re-opening cities — includes city examples, a sample risk assessment framework, and other relevant links from experts and practitioners that city leaders can use to guide their re-opening decisions.
- *From Johns Hopkins University: JHU’s Schools of Engineering, Public Health, and Medicine have launched a temperature-tracking study and an app to map and monitor potential COVID-19 cases. The app is available on Apple App Store and on Google Play, and is designed to help reveal important public health trends and potential disease outbreaks.
- From U.S. Digital Response: An overview on the basics of digital contact tracing, along with technical recommendations for governments considering using the digital contract tracing tools.
- From the Behavioral Insights Team (BIT): A recording of BIT’s webinar that provides information about the behavioral insights that can be applied to craft more effective COVID-19 communications. These insights were collected through rapid, iterative communications and acceptability testing with over 30,000 participants across the globe.
- From Bloomberg Cities: Five concrete tips that cities should consider when developing public messaging about COVID-19, based on BIT-supported trials conducted in five American cities.
- From the CDC: Key concepts regarding contact tracing, with a roundup of relevant contact tracing resources from the CDC, other federal agencies, and other organizations.
- From the National League of Cities (NLC): From NLC and Bloomberg Philanthropies’ COVID-19 City Fiscal Tracking and Federal Reimbursement Initiative, tactical information about how cities can access COVID-19 FEMA funds, what FEMA funds can be used for, and how to ensure cities maintain federal response and recovery funding.
- From Bloomberg Associates & U.S. Conference of Mayors: The COVID-19 Municipal Resource Guide includes tactical step-by-step guidance for local governments to access federal relief funds, guidance for establishing controls and proactive monitoring and oversight of funds, and relevant checklists, tools, and templates for cities.
- From Bloomberg Cities: Three things mayors can do to help build an army of coronavirus ‘contact tracers’
- From Georgetown University Center for Global Health Science and Security & the Nuclear Threat Initiative (NTI): A COVID-19 Frontline Guide for Decision-Makers, a framework to help local leaders respond to the spread of the virus in their communities. Includes checklists, indicators of progress, and priority actions to take against 7 key objectives that were developed by a team of experienced experts and former public health officials, in consultation with current state and local officials about the key issues they face.
- From JP Morgan Chase Institute: Insights from five years of big data research on the potential economic impacts of COVID-19 on families, small businesses, and communities.
- From Local Housing Solutions: Homelessness outreach efforts, eviction moratoriums, and other housing-related advice that localities across the country have utilized to keep their communities safe during the novel coronavirus pandemic. Includes a downloadable document that provides an overview of these strategies and best practices.
- From the National League of Cities: Five Ways Cities Are Supporting Small Business — with links to city examples for each featured action
- From Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health: Guidance on Protecting Incarcerated Individuals, a special report for city leaders (for an easy-to-read summary of the report, see Bloomberg Cities’ post on how to fight COVID-19 jails). Also: This special report for city leaders with seven concrete and actionable recommendations for COVID-19 response in metropolitan areas.
- From Cities of Service: “It’s not too early for cities to establish local recovery teams tasked with identifying vulnerable populations, creating engagement strategies, and aligning resources.” This post outlines five tips for a successful COVID-19 engagement recovery team.
- *From City Health Dashboard: 37 measures of health, the factors that shape health, and drivers of health equity to guide local solutions for U.S. cities, now expanded with data from 250 new small cities.
- From the U.S. Conference of Mayors: What Mayors Need to Know — includes operational best practices for mayors, as well as city guidelines and best practices sourced from the network.
- From What Works Cities: Five actions cities can take to help organize their responses to well-intentioned offers to supply or donate PPE from individuals, community groups, and the private sector.
- From the Government Finance Officers Association (GFOA): GFOA’s Fiscal First Resource Center lists resources and a 12-step process to help local government finance officers facing situations that cause significant financial distress.
- From The COVID Tracking Project: Collects and publishes the most complete testing data available for US states and territories. Includes links to data visualizations and state testing report cards to provide government leaders with critical data (currently not available elsewhere) about COVID testing by state.
- From Governing: Social Equity Considerations — a roundup of COVID response elements that have equity implications, and how leaders can make decisions during a city’s COVID response with an equity lens.
- From Esri: An interactive dashboard searchable by county that mixes real-time coronavirus case counts with local health and population statistics in order to help city and healthcare leaders plan for future impact.
- From the Open Government Partnership: Emergency Procurement for COVID-19: Buying Fast, Open and Smart gives three recommendations for procurement best practices during crises like COVID-19.
- From the Fines and Fees Justice Center: Policy recommendations on how to minimize impact on low-income communities and combat fines and fees inequities as cities work to mitigate the spread of coronavirus. Also includes a live tracker that follows state, county, and city action regarding fines and fees during this time.
- From the National Housing Law Project (NHLP): This analysis identifies who is protected and who is left out of the federal moratorium on evictions and foreclosures announced on March 18th by the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD)
- From the National Association of City Transportation Officials (NACTO): A regularly updated city action tracker of rapidly-deployed transportation responses related to COVID-19, plus toolbox to help city and transportation agency staff plan responses to the pandemic.
- From Bloomberg Cities: Advice on five transportation initiatives that city leaders can act on right now, from former New York City transportation commissioner, Janette Sadik-Khan, and NACTO’s executive director, Corinne Kisner.
- From UrbanLeap: Virtual communities of CIOs and City Managers to provide a safe space (a closed group for members only) to ask questions and get effective answers quickly. These communities are moderated by subject matter experts and mentors who bring additional insights to the discussions. UrbanLeap is providing this service free of charge to all who are interested.
- From The New Deal: A live tracker of policy actions taken by government leaders in response to coronavirus. Actions are searchable by policy category and by level of government.
Please note: The below is a representative list of cities that have taken a particular policy action, with links to details. For a more comprehensive list, visit the COVID-19 Local Action Tracker launched by Bloomberg Philanthropies in partnership with the National League of Cities. NOTE: State of Emergency Declarations, Restrictions around Public Gatherings & Schools Closures, Freezing of Utility Shut Offs, Suspension of Other Fees, and Eviction Moratoria sections have been archived.
Reducing the Jail Population
- New Orleans, LA: Orleans Criminal Court judges order release of certain inmates amid coronavirus crisis (parish-wide)
- Philadelphia, PA: District Attorney Krasner announces acceleration of DAO reforms in response to COVID-19 emergency
- San Francisco, CA: San Francisco officials push to reduce jail population to prevent coronavirus outbreak
- County actions: Los Angeles County, Cuyahoga County, OH
- New York Times Op-Ed: Our Courts and Jails Are Putting Lives At Risk
Housing and/or Homeless Services
- Boston, MA: Mayor Marty Walsh announces subsidized housing for 1,000 homeless, at-risk Boston families
- New York, NY: City to put 6,000 homeless, some COVID-19 positive, into local hotels
- Portland, OR: COVID-19 guidance for people experiencing homelessness without shelter
- San Francisco, CA: San Francisco increases COVID-19 protections for homeless residents and people living in single room occupancy hotels
- Seattle, WA: King County and Seattle expand COVID-19 emergency housing to create additional shelter space and temporary housing options for people who are unable to isolate and recover in their own homes, or do not have a home
Food Support for Individuals and Families In Need
- Augusta, GA: Augusta mayor and nonprofits partnering to provide 25,000 meals weekly
- Charlotte, NC: Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools providing free meals for students during school closings over coronavirus
- Chicago, IL: All Chicago Public Schools to offer free meal pickup during coronavirus closure
- Houston, TX: Houston launches food delivery program to serve 1,000 people with disabilities amid COVID-19 pandemic
- Lansing, MI: Monthly “drive-thru” mobile food pantries continues to provide food support for low-income Lansing families
- Little Rock, AR: Little Rock’s massive effort to feed kids amid the pandemic — an in-depth look at Little Rock’s program, including a break down of the operations and division of labor behind the effort
- *Seattle, WA: Seattle to invest more than $7 million to help get food to seniors, homeless residents — Note: Funding from federal stimulus bills (CARES Act and Families First Coronavirus Response Act).
- Washington, DC: D.C., Md. and Va. schools offer learning plans, free meals for students during coronavirus closures
- In rural areas, school districts are experimenting with providing free meals along bus routes
Small Business Support
- Durham, NC: COVID-19 relief for small businesses — website centralizes all relevant COVID-19 information for small businesses and connects small businesses to available grant and loan programs
- Gilbert, AZ: City-developed searchable map of Gilbert’s small businesses with ways residents can support specific businesses
- Hillsboro, OR: Crisis funding for small businesses and employees to apply for emergency business support grants, loans, and rental assistance
- Little Rock, AR: Mayor Scott announces new Small Business Emergency Assistance Program, made up of $500,000 to assist Little Rock small businesses, plus zero-interest loans and potential loan forgiveness.
- Philadelphia, PA: The city of Philadelphia and the Philadelphia Industrial Development Corporation (PIDC) launched the COVID-19 Small Business Relief Fund, a grant and loan program to support struggling and barely afloat businesses in the city. Update: As of March 30th, the city is no longer accepting relief fund applications from businesses with $500K or more in revenue; micro-enterprise grants will continue.
- New York, NY: Interest-free loans and other financial assistance for small business owners in New York City affected by COVID-19
- Salt Lake County, UT: Salt Lake County opens up new business relief hotline, launched by their COVID-19 Economic Impact & Recovery Team
- San Jose, CA: San Jose moves forward with moratorium on evictions, proposes financial aid for small businesses
- Tulsa, OK: Tulsa offers $1.1 million in loans to small businesses
- Washington, DC: Mayor Bowser and the Council of the District of Columbia investing $25 million in the COVID-19 Recovery Effort and the DC Small Business Recovery Microgrants Program
Relief Funding & Support for Individuals and Families in Need
- Atlanta, GA: Mayor Bottoms announces fund with Georgia’s Own Credit Union to provide grants during COVID-19 crisis
- Baltimore, MD: New diaper-delivery service for vulnerable families for two months — plans to distribute 500,000 diapers to nearly 10,000 vulnerable young children across the City
- Boston, MA: The Boston Resiliency Fund is helping to coordinate the City’s fundraising efforts to support residents most affected by the coronavirus. Priorities are to provide food for children and seniors, technology for remote learning for students, and support to the city’s first responders and healthcare workers.
- Dallas, TX: Dallas City Council approves $13.7 million in rent, mortgage, and utilities relief for residents in need
- Jacksonville, FL: City to pay $1,000 to Jacksonville residents most impacted by coronavirus — this new, local stimulus package is the result of a $160 million federal CARES grant the city received to fund COVID-19 relief
- King County, WA: King County Executive Constantine transmits emergency legislation to fund child care services for first responders and other essential workers.
- Louisville, KY: The One Louisville: COVID-19 Response Fund will support both individuals & community-based organizations that need help as a result of the outbreak. The city is raising funds in partnership with philanthropic and community partners, as well as corporate and civic donors. See Mayor Greg Fischer’s tweet about the fund here.
- New Orleans, LA: Partnership with the New Orleans Business Alliance to stand up a relief fund for gig economy workers impacted by loss of income
- *Newark, NJ: $1 million Emergency Housing Assistance Fund created to provide low-income residents struggling due to coronavirus up to $1K each to help pay rent or utilities
- *Philadelphia, PA: Philadelphia is launching a COVID-19 Emergency Rental Assistance Program to help people who have lost income because of COVID-19 pay their rent. Payments are made directly to the landlord.
- Pittsburgh, PA: Mayor announces COVID-19 funding for residents and small businesses — From over $12M in federal funding (Emergency Solutions Grant and Community Development Block Grant)
- *San Diego, CA: Childcare support for essential workers expanded; $10 million in CARES Act funding directed to provide childcare for essential workers during the coronavirus pandemic response ($5M county commitment + $5M city match)
- *San Jose, CA: San Jose approves a new coronavirus relief fund to help the city receive federal resources for those affected by the pandemic
- Seattle, WA: Seattle will provide $800 each in supermarket vouchers to thousands of families during coronavirus crisis
- St. Paul, MN: St. Paul will provide emergency cash assistance for up to 1,000 families and 300 small businesses that have lost income because of the COVID-19 pandemic
Expanded Hospital/COVID-19 Facilities
- Cities across the U.S. look to convert empty college dorms into temporary medical centers in preparation for heightened need for hospitals
- King County, WA: King County joins with Harborview Medical Center to repurpose warehouse space to open an isolation and recovery site
- Los Angeles, CA: LA Convention Center transforms into a federal field hospital
- New York, NY: New York City builds emergency field hospital in Central Park
- San Diego, CA: San Diego Mayor orders vacant city properties be made available for COVID-19 patients
- Boston, MA: Boston will test 1,000 residents, who are currently showing no symptoms to detect antibody presence
- *Detroit, MI: Detroit will become one of the first cities in the nation to use rapid-response COVID-19 testing kits; Plus: Detroit testing all nursing home residents and staff; Plus: Detroit becomes first Michigan city to test for COVID-19 without prescription or virus symptoms as a way toward being able to “recover economically as quickly as possible”; Plus: Now that the city has completed testing at Detroit’s nursing homes, Detroit will issue a public health order mandating grocery store workers be tested for coronavirus by May 11.; *Plus: The city is expanding free testing to all seniors who are 60+ and are city residents.
- Hoboken, NJ: Hoboken to begin testing residents in senior housing
- Jacksonville, FL: COVID-19 testing site opens to help underserved communities in Jacksonville
- Little Rock, AR: Mayor announces COVID-19 testing for southwest Little Rock, an underserved area of the city, and the launch of a Reusable Mask Distribution program
- Lexington, KY: Drive-thru testing coming to predominantly black communities in Kentucky’s largest cities
- Los Angeles, CA: Asymptomatic essential workers in L.A. can now get tested for coronavirus; *Plus: Los Angeles opening up Coronavirus testing to all residents — the first major U.S. city to provide free testing to all residents (L.A. residents can sign up here to schedule a test)
- Miami, FL: New COVID-19 testing site for seniors opens today in Miami
- Philadelphia, PA: Philly adds 12 new coronavirus test sites to expand capacity in underserved neighborhoods and inch the city toward reopening the economy
- San Francisco, CA: SF expands free COVID-19 testing for essential workers and residents without insurance
- Seattle, WA: Seattle opens first coronavirus testing site for first responders AND New coronavirus monitoring program launched in Seattle based on home-test kits
- Washington, DC: Drive-thru Coronavirus test sites available for first responders; *Plus: D.C. expanding coronavirus testing to include critical infrastructure workers who have been exposed but are asymptomatic (including grocery store workers and essential government employees)
Economic Recovery & “Re-opening” Preparation
- Chattanooga, Knoxville, Memphis, and Nashville, TN: The mayors of Tennessee’s four largest cities have created a task force to coordinate the reopening of local economies and recovery of businesses impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic
- Washington, DC: Amid financial impacts from COVID-19, Bowser launches new District Economic Recovery Team; *Plus: Mayor Bowser is hosting a TeleTown Hall with the ReOpen DC Advisory Group to update the public on their efforts and collect community input. The registration link to the town hall is open to the public.
- Salt Lake County, UT: Detailed reporting on how the county is approaching and tackling the daunting task of contact tracing
- San Francisco, CA: How San Francisco plans to trace every coronavirus case and contact — report dated April 8 about contact tracing task force; *NEW: San Francisco launches contact tracing program to strengthen coronavirus response — notice of contact tracing program launch by Mayor’s Office (April 16)
Other Innovative Actions
- Buffalo, NY: Buffalo launches Good Neighbors Network, a program designed to help residents find non-emergency assistance while maintaining a safe physical distance by using colorful doorknob hangers
- Chicago, IL: City urges residents to use Smart911 app to provide critical information to assist first responders amid COVID-19 outbreak
- Houston, TX: Mayor Turner and Harris County announce a new resource to help essential workers find quality child care and financial assistance
- Long Beach, CA: Long Beach is refocusing an online platform launched prior to the pandemic to match out-of-work child care professionals with essential workers who need them
- Louisville, KY: Lift Up Lou— a program launched by the city in partnership with local organizations to promote health & wellness and to help keep residents’ spirits up during COVID-19; includes the Louisville Artist Network, a program that offers “micro commissions” to area artists to create works that can be shared with the public
- Newark, NJ: Newark “requests” all businesses including those deemed essential, except for health, safety and welfare emergency services, to close on Mondays; plus, free face masks distributed to local residents
- Philadelphia, PA: Philadelphia closes some streets to vehicular traffic to create space for walkers and bikers and bolster social distancing efforts
- Rochester, MN: Rochester repurposes library staff to answer resident questions for the city’s COVID-19 hotline
- Rochester, NY: Rochester Public Library staff can now answer your COVID-19 questions on new hotline
- Sacramento, CA: Sacramento’s finest restaurants cook delivery meals for low-income seniors during coronavirus shutdown in an effort spearheaded by the Mayor’s Office
- San Diego, CA: Mayor creates $25M Behavioral Health Impact Fund to support service providers’ efforts to “buy, expand or renovate a facility” to increase their capacity to serve individuals experiencing mental illness and substance abuse issues; *Plus: City creates public-private partnership to provide funding for arts organizations affected by COVID-19
- San Francisco, CA: San Francisco uses existing employee assistance program to expand mental health and counseling services for frontline healthcare and emergency workers
Op-Eds & Commentary Specific to Local Government
- *From USA Today: In pandemic, America’s smaller cities are hurting, too. Congress shouldn’t forget them — An op-ed by Mayor Nan Whaley of Dayton, OH and Mayor Don Patterson of Kettering, OH about the challenges that smaller cities face in maintaining vital services while struggling with significant declines in revenue, with a bipartisan call for Congress to “prioritize aid for cities large and small in the next emergency funding package.”
- *From City Lab: For Cities, This Is a Fiscal Disaster — An op-ed by John Juech, Assistant City Manager for the City of Cincinnati, about the “fiscal calamity” faced by America’s smaller town and cities, and the need for federal stimulus support.
- From Governing: What Effective Public Leaders Do to Get Ahead of a Crisis — An opinion piece by former Maryland Governor and former Baltimore Mayor Martin O’Malley, with three operational tactics for leaders to “get inside the turning radius of the fast-developing emergency.”
- From The New York Times: I’m a Red-State Mayor and I Ordered My City to Stay Home — An opinion piece by Tulsa Mayor G.T. Bynum that makes the case for the importance of local government.
- From the Bloomberg Harvard City Leadership Initiative, a Q&A with Seattle Mayor Jenny Durkan on her reflections as a leader experiencing the coronavirus outbreak — and how she is leading her city through it.
- From NPR: What’s Inside The Senate’s $2 Trillion Coronavirus Aid Package — Initial analysis with easy-to-digest infographics that breaks down how the $2.2 trillion federal stimulus package is distributed across state & local governments, individuals, small businesses, big corporations, public health, safety net, and education/other.
- From The Washington Post: What every mayor needs to know about this virus — advice from Seattle Mayor Jenny Durkan to mayors and local officials trying to prepare their communities in combatting the virus.
- From The Philadelphia Inquirer: The city needs bold leadership to weather coronavirus — leadership lessons shared by former Mayor Michael Nutter, who served as Philadelphia’s chief executive during the Great Recession
- From The Brookings Institution: How our cities can reopen after the COVID-19 pandemic — a 10-point plan that presents key measures to “prepare our cities, economy, and workers for the next phase of the coronavirus crisis and beyond.”
COVID-19 Guidelines and Updates
- The Coronavirus Resource Center from Johns Hopkins University (JHU) with COVID-19 updates, data, information, FAQs, and expert advice and commentary. The site also links to the Coronavirus COVID-19 Dashboard, a live map of global COVID-19 cases by the Center for Systems Science and Engineering (CSSE) at JHU. *NEW: A dashboard tracking cases at the county level in the U.S.; and interactive visualizations of new cases with 5-day moving averages.
- Latest information and guidance from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), including community resources, updates, and COVID-19 cases in the U.S. *NEW: Guidance on use of cloth face masks/coverings for general public.
- Latest information and guidance from the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), including fact sheets and rumor control links
- Latest resources and updates from the World Health Organization (WHO), including daily situation reports and travel advice. Also: *technical guidance and checklists for governments in the areas of response to community spread; operational considerations for case management, lab testing prioritization, and maintaining a safe and adequate blood supply; and *updated guidelines for maintaining essential health services
- Mapping Coronavirus Across the Globe: Inventory of interactive maps keeping track of up-to-date information and data on the virus from Data-Smart City Solutions at the Harvard Kennedy School Ash Center
- COVID-19 Action Tracker: Up-to-date lists of state-level mitigation strategies (with some local actions included as well) from the American Enterprise Institute (AEI)
What Works Cities is a national initiative that empowers cities to tackle pressing community challenges and improve residents’ lives through data-driven decision making. Operating as a partnership between five national organizations, What Works Cities works directly with city leaders and staff by providing coaching and technical assistance, a range of online and in-person learning opportunities, and a growing nationwide professional network.