What’s Just Happened and What’s Next
by Lauren Kalisek
The last few weeks have been intense. It has been a whiplash experience common to folks throughout the state, the nation, and even the globe as we’ve moved from our normal lives to ones changed significantly by health and safety measures needed to stem the tide of a deadly virus. Events have moved quickly from the World Health Organization’s initial declaration on January 30, 2020 of a global public health emergency to its March 11, 2020 confirmation of COVID-19 as a pandemic.
At our office, we developed a remote work plan in late February/early March and implemented it fully by mid-March. We also began to respond to questions from clients about their own planning during this time. We monitored guidance being issued by the White House, local school closings, local stay at home orders, and the series of executive orders from our Governor. And we wondered how all of this would play out as businesses closed, events were canceled, courts and state and federal agencies implemented their own remote work plans, and Congress debated new legislation to provide economic relief.
What we know so far is described in more detail in the articles of our April newsletter. The work of our state agencies continues without interruption with new initiatives developed to address COVID-19 challenges within their jurisdictions. Interim work by legislative committees has been impacted by the need to postpone hearings. Federal and state courts and administrative law judges remain active holding hearings remotely and continuing to issue orders and rulings. Congress passed significant federal legislation in the form of the Families First and CARES Acts in an effort to support workers and businesses impacted by the crisis.
So what comes next? For the immediate future, as we remain hunkered down during social distancing, our focus turns to supporting our clients’ efforts to stay fully informed about all of these measures at local, state and federal levels to address the crisis. It will be important to follow and understand guidance, rulemakings and procedures that have been, and will be, rolled out. Our legal team is committed to helping our clients not miss a beat with ongoing and new priorities. And in some respects regular business continues as we plan for a return to normal life. Although we don’t know yet precisely when that will be, we know it will occur. Until then, we at Lloyd Gosselink wish all of our clients, friends and colleagues good health and good cheer as we move through this unprecedented time together.
Lauren Kalisek is the Managing Director and leads our Firm’s Districts Practice Group. Lauren focuses on providing counsel to cities, river authorities, water districts, and other local governmental organizations. If you would like additional information or have questions related to this article or other matters, please contact Lauren at 512.322.5847 or firstname.lastname@example.org.