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Pandemic Response

The battles over masks and vaccine mandates threaten the idea, going back to the founders, that surrendering a bit of personal freedom is necessary to secure everyone’s welfare.
The state’s Department of Job and Family Services has predicted that it will take until early December to issue a ruling on the massive backlog of unprocessed unemployment benefits appeals.
Thousands of state employees, nearly 8 percent of the state workforce, have filed for exemption from the vaccine mandate, which includes hundreds of state troopers and prison guards.
Gov. Ned Lamont and the state legislative leaders must decide whether to extend the emergency powers related to the coronavirus pandemic that are set to expire at the end of this month.
When the coronavirus pandemic hit, libraries were forced to adapt their services to adhere to the safety restrictions. For many, public libraries provided community services far beyond just checking out books.
The Biden administration’s federal vaccine mandate will impact about 170,000 workers, approximately one-third of the state’s workforce, even though Maine has one of the highest vaccination rates in the nation.
New research from Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis found that the stay-at-home and other emergency orders enacted by officials in response to the coronavirus pandemic likely saved thousands of lives in the region.
The state had hoped to announce COVID-related grants for broadband expansion, water and sewer projects and resident and business support by mid-October, but the timeline has been pushed back to early 2022.
Federal pandemic relief funds offer state and local governments the chance to invest in public health programming and infrastructure to make communities safer, particularly those that have been the most harmed.
The state’s Health Department has changed the way it reports COVID-related death data to the CDC which gives an appearance of a pandemic in decline, despite the continued spread of the delta variant.