Association of Oregon Counties (AOC) is closely monitoring the COVID-19 pandemic, and through partners, is providing resources and up-to-date information on the state of the outbreak, efforts to curb and stop the spread, funding and economic impact, and other imperative details as counties work through prevention and mitigation strategies.
Please direct all questions to the AOC public affairs department.
Joint Special Committee on Coronavirus Response
The Oregon Legislature’s Joint Special Committee on Coronavirus Response (JSCCR) was created specifically to expand the scope of our approach to the Coronavirus (COVID-19). Specifically, the JSCCR is charged with the following:
- Identify actions that will support economic relief and household stability for low-income workers and small businesses who are at risk of being significantly impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic.
- Produce budget and policy recommendations for legislative action in a timely manner.
- Monitor Oregon’s ongoing public health response and, if needed, make recommendations for further legislative action.
State Policy Resources
Federal Policy Resources
- NACo Letter to Congressional Leadership on Continued Coronavirus Response
- NACo Letter to Congressional Leadership on Coronavirus Pandemic
- NACo Analysis of Federal Legislation on Coronavirus Pandemic
County Webpages Dedicated to COVID-19
For information provided by each county, click the links below.
*Information will be updated as it becomes available.
A number of resources are available regarding COVID-19, including information on current cases, transmission sources, travel information, testing, risk, and other pertinent details. Below are leading resources for up-to-date and relevant information.
Visit the Oregon Health Authority website for information on cases in Oregon ; updated frequently asked questions (FAQ) responses; and educational videos on protection, facts, when to seek treatment, and tutorials.
Visit the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) website for information on COVID-19 background and symptom information, travel resources, protection and prevention, community prevention recommendations, U.S. cases, and more.
- Implementation of Mitigation Strategies for Communities with Local COVID-19 Transmission
- Cases in the U.S.
- Situation Summary
- Resources for Healthcare Professionals
- Resources for Healthcare Facilities
- Information for Health Departments
- Information for Travel
- Information for Businesses
- Work, School, and Home Guidance
- Communication Resources
CIS is providing members and agents with relevant information about the coronavirus. To support counties, view the CIS webpage dedicated to supporting public employers – on everything from sick leave, emergency leave policies, and workers compensation.
- CIS Coronavirus Resources (member login may be required)
*Data updated March 25, 2020
*Data updated March 26, 2020
*Data updated March 26, 2020
Federal and State Action
A number of actions have been taken be the federal government and the State of Oregon. Updates on key action can be found below.
Funding: Federal Emergency Package
- $3.1 billion for the Office of the Secretary of Health and Human Services for their dispersal;
- $950 million for state and local health departments;
- $300 million to buy vaccines and treatments; and
- $1.25 billion for international activities.
Small Business Administration
The Small Business Administration (SBA) announced March 12, it will provide Economic Injury Disaster loans of up to $2 million to small businesses affected by COVID-19. Information on the loan program and other business resources can be found here.
National Emergency Declared
Families First Coronavirus Response Act
On March 18, President Trump signed the second COVID-19 relief bill, “Families First Coronavirus Response Act” (HR 6201). This bill provides aid for nutrition assistance, unemployment support for states, Medicaid support, and provides many workers with two weeks paid sick and family leave related to COVID-19, among other measures.
Executive Order on Prioritizing and Allocating Health and Medical Resources to Respond to the Spread of Covid-19
On March 18, President Trump signed an executive order to prioritize and allocate health and medical resources to respond to the spread of COVID-19.
U.S. Senate Introduces Third COVID-19 Response Package
On March 19, the Senate Republicans introduced the third coronavirus response bill, the CARES Act (S 3548). Broadly, the bill will provide emergency assistance and health care response for individuals, families, and businesses affected by the pandemic.
For the latest information and resources on Coronavirus (COVID-19), visit: State of Oregon Coronavirus/COVID-19 Information and Resources
State of Emergency
Large Event Ban
- Workplaces: Recommended implementation, to the extent possible, of distancing measures, including increasing the physical space between employees in offices and worksites; limitation of in-person meetings and travel; and staggering of work schedules where possible.
- Schools: Notwithstanding previous guidance to keep schools open, all non-essential school-associated gatherings and group activities should be canceled — such as group parent meetings, field trips, and competitions.
- Long-Term Care and Assisted Living: The strict visitation limitations announced this week by the Oregon Health Authority and Department of Human Services remain in place.
Legislature Appoints Special Joint Committee
The first meeting of the newly formed Joint Committee on Coronavirus Response is scheduled to meet Wednesday March 18 at 10:00 a.m. In a recent press release, legislative leaders called for a special session, “we recognize the urgent and wide-ranging needs facing Oregonians as the worldwide coronavirus pandemic continues to develop. The Legislature will return for a special session as soon as we have an emergency response package that will address the statewide impacts on families, workers, and businesses.”
New Social Distancing Measures
Announced in a press conference on March 16, Governor Brown and state leaders overviewed new social distancing measures that will be signed in an executive order.
New measures include:
- A statewide cancellation of all events and gatherings larger than 25 people — exempting essential locations like workplaces, grocery stores, pharmacies, and retail stores. Additional recommendation was for Oregonians avoid gatherings of 10 people or more.
- Restaurants, bars, and other establishments that offer food or beverages for sale are restricted to carry-out and delivery only with no on-site consumption permitted.
- Food service at health care facilities, workplaces, and other essential facilities will continue.
- All other businesses are urged to assess their practices, implement strong social distancing measures, and close their doors temporarily if they cannot put the new guidance in place.
The new measures will begin March 17, and will be effective for at least four weeks.
Coronavirus Economic Advisory Council
Governor Brown has formed a coronavirus economic advisory council that will convene March 17 to explore ways to mitigate economic impacts of social distancing measures.
Unified Command Emergency Resource Organizational Structure
On March 16, the state’s Unified Command emergency response organizational structure, an incident management structure, was activated.
Abnormal Market Disruption Declared
On March 16, Governor Brown Declared an abnormal market disruption on essential items to prevent price gouging.
Two Command Groups Formed
Governor Brown announced at her March 16 press conference, the formation of two command groups focused on managing health care resources and state resources, the work of the groups will help health care community to prepare for the expected surge of COVID-19 cases in the coming weeks — through the metro regional COVID-19 hospital response plan, a model for a crisis care that can be implemented statewide. Under the plan, hospitals work together, deploying COVID-19 testing resources and personal protective equipment, including gowns, masks, and gloves, as community resources, and work together to increase bed capacity.
Chief Justice Order Restricts Court Hearings and Operations
Chief Justice Martha Walters has ordered all courts in Oregon to suspend all nonessential court functions, including most jury trials through at least March 27. Courts, district attorneys, and law enforcement are working to determine necessary cases and whether any cases can be deferred to a later date.
DPSST Closing Oregon Public Safety Academy
The Department of Public Safety Standards & Training has closed its campus and suspended all training including basic police academies. Deputies who are currently in classes will be sent back to their agencies. All regional coordinators can only be accessed via phone as their email has been turned off.
School Closure Extension, Additional Mandates
- Continue delivering supplemental education and learning supports;
- Provide school meals in non-congregate settings;
- Provide supplemental services and emergency management services, including childcare for first responders, health care and emergency workers- guidance will be provided by the Department of Education;
- Develop plans for operation of essential, non-educational services, including food services; and
- Continue pay to all employees of public schools.
Order to Preserve Surgical Masks, Gowns, and Gloves
On March 18, Oregon Governor Kate Brown directed all Oregon hospitals outpatient clinics, and health care providers, including veterinarians and dentists, to cease all non-emergency procedures, in order to preserve personal protective equipment (PPE), such as surgical masks, gowns, and gloves, for health care workers treating COVID-19 patients. The order also limits visitation in hospitals to protect health care workers and at-risk patients from the spread of COVID-19.
Governor Kate Brown Announces New Executive Order For Higher Education Institutions
Oregon Governor Kate Brown also announced, on March 18, an executive order directing Oregon’s higher education institutions to move their curriculum to online learning, prohibiting in-person classroom interactions through April 28 as a way to prevent transmission of COVID-19. To view the press release, click here.
Joint Special Committee on Coronavirus Response Convenes
The first meeting of the Joint Special Committee on Coronavirus Response was held March 18. The committee had a comprehensive review of the current situation in Oregon, including updates from the Governor’s Office; impacts of the outbreak on business and labor, including needs and current responses; and updates from the Oregon Health Authority. Testimony was by invitation only. A full agenda can be found here.
Key takeaways from the meeting include:
- The Governor’s Office current priorities include expanding testing capacity, hospital capacity, and collecting personal protective equipment for those on the front lines.
- The Governor’s Office is focused heavily on food, housing, and business and economic support and recovery.
- Since Oregon is heavily dependent on income taxes for the funding of its core public services, the State anticipates a steep decline in available revenues. As a result, the State is anticipating that funding needs will vastly exceed available revenues, so there will be significant prioritization of how the State spends what funds it has. More clarity will come as the May forecast is released.
- Over 300 pieces of written testimony were submitted to the committee for today’s hearing, covering a range of critical needs. AOC’s testimony can be found here.
Oregon Family Leave Act Provisions Were Updated Through Emergency Rulemaking
Oregon Labor Commissioner Val Hoyle announced on March 18, emergency rulemaking was conducted to allow parents forced to take protected time off through the Oregon Family Leave Act due to the COVID-19 pandemic related school closures. Temporary rules can be viewed here.
Governor Kate Brown Announces New Executive Order For School Closures and Child Care Services
Governor Brown’s most recent executive order 20-08 (extension of school closures) included an expansion of child care benefits for working parents. Governor Brown directed the Oregon Department of Human Services and the Early Learning Division to raise the eligibility income limit for the Employment Related Day Care (ERDC) program, to reduce copays, and to expand circumstances for when payment for days of absence and shutdown are allowable. Click here for temporary rules.
Temporary Camping Closures Announced for Oregon State Parks, Forests, and Wildlife Areas
The Oregon State Parks and Recreation Department announced on March 19, it will be suspending all overnight camping beginning April 3. Click here to view the Department’s announcement.
State Prepares Oregon Medical Station
The Oregon Health Authority, announced March 19, they will be assembling the Oregon Medical Station (OMS) in parthership with the Oregon Military Department starting March 19, at the Salem Fairgrounds. The OMS is a temporary mobile facility dedicated for emergency use in situations like the COVID-19 pandemic. More information provided by OHA can be found here.
Joint Special Committee on Coronavirus Response to Meet March 20
In preparation for the meeting, committee co chairs released a draft plan entitled Temporary Relief for The Duration of Emergency Declaration. The stated goal is to “help people stay in their homes and comply with public health guidelines.” The goal is further explained, “Experts tell us we must act now to prevent compounded growth in our infection rate. These recommendations are to help Oregonians get through the next 90 days. Longer-term recommendations will need to be identified by the committee as their work continues.”
Priorities outlined in the plan include:
- Stability for Individuals and Families (90-day plan)
- Health Care System Needs
- Short-Term Employer Support
The document also notes the recommendations are for immediate actions to be taken by the Legislature by March 31.
An additional document the committee posted outlined public testimony and legislator recommendations. To view the document, click here.
Governor Kate Brown Rolls Out “Stay Home. Save Lives.” Order
- Limits non-essential social and recreational gatherings;
- Prohibits shopping at specific retail business, where social distancing requirements cannot be met (list is defined);
- Requires businesses still open to implement social distancing;
- Directs Oregonians to stay home, allowing certain activities;
- Closes certain outdoor recreation;
- Sets new childcare facility guidelines; and
- Sets enforcement measures through Class C misdemeanor.