COVID-19: News & Update Tracking For Contractors

As state responses to COVID-19 continue to unfold, we’ve established a single resource hub for our contractor and industry partners that details the latest prohibitory orders issued by states. These orders may have relevance for our partners and projects in the area. We are currently working with each state government to obtain additional specific guidance on construction sites and electrical work considerations.

3/25 Update:


Governor Pritzker issues Executive Order to enact “stay at home or place of residence” in response to COVID-19, Executive Order No. 8. The order states that all businesses and operations in the State, except Essential Businesses and Operations as defined below, are required to cease all activities within the State exceptMinimum Basic Operations. For the purposes of this Executive Order, Essential Businesses and Operations means Healthcare and Public Health Operations, Human Services Operations, Essential Governmental Functions, and Essential Infrastructure, and the following:

Critical trades: Building and Construction Tradesmen and Tradeswomen, and other trades including but not limited to plumbers, electricians…

New York

Governor Cuomo Issues Guidance on Essential Services Under the March 20th “New York State on PAUSE” Executive Order. This order includes a new directive that all nonessential businesses statewide must close in-office personnel functions. A full list of what “Essential Business,” means concerning Executive Order 202.6, is provided and includes: Construction, Including: skilled trades such as electricians, plumbers.


Governor Edwards issues Proclamation JBE 2020-33 Additional Measures for COVID-10 Stay At Home.” According to the proclamation, nonessential businesses shall be closed to the public and members. Companies working in the trades, such as electricians, are not listed as being required to close operations per Section 5 of the proclamation. Find more information here.


Governor Holcomb issues executive order in response to COVID-19 requiring individual to “stay at home or place of residence,” and businesses to close from March 24, 2020 – April 6, 2020, unless otherwise classified as Essential Business and Operations. Essential Businesses and Operations means Healthcare and Public Health Operations, Human Services Operations, Essential Governmental Functions, and Essential Infrastructure, and the following:

Critical trades: Building and Construction Tradesmen and Tradeswomen, and other trades including but not limited to plumbers, electricians…


Governor Steve Sisolak signs new emergency directive to order non-essential businesses to close. “Previously, I asked non-essential businesses to close their doors to the public. I am no longer asking them to do that,” said Gov. Sisolak. “I am directing all non-essential businesses to close. I repeat. If you are NOT an essential business, I am using my power as Governor under an emergency declaration to order you to close. Exceptions included those businesses that provide essential infrastructure operations, including construction, energy (including solar), and electrical.


Governor Kate Brown issues Executive Order NO. 20-12 issuing Stay At Home, Closing Specified Retail Businesses. “Pursuant to ORS 433.441(3)(a),(b),(d), and (f), ORS 401.168(1), and ORS 401.188(1) to (3), and effective 12-01, March 24, 2020, I prohibit the operation of the following businesses, for which close personal contact is difficult or impossible to avoid (learn more here). Electrical or construction-related businesses are not listed under required businesses to close.

3/24 Update:


Late on March 19, Gov. Newsom issued an executive order that functionally adopts a “shelter in place” ruling for much of the state of California. The order exempts from the order manufacturers identified as contributing to “critical infrastructure” within the federal guidance issued by the Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Agency (CISA). The governor’s office proposed this rule to create “consistency” across the state amid the many county or city shelter-in-place orders that have popped up in California throughout the week.


Georgia has declared a state of emergency and issued general recommendations on social distancing but has no formal limits on mass gatherings. At the same time, all Georgia lawmakers urged to self-quarantine after a senator’s positive coronavirus test. Atlanta Mayor Keisha Lance Bottoms has also issued an executive order limiting restaurants to take out service, closing bars, gyms and other businesses, effective at midnight. The order closes all bars and nightclubs that don’t serve food, gyms and fitness centers, movie theaters, live performance venues, bowling alleys, and arcades as well as private social clubs in Atlanta. This has no apparent impact on electrical contractors or construction sites.


On March 23, Gov. Charlie Baker issued a stay in place order from March 24 through April 7. The list of essential businesses exempted from the order can be found here and appears not to incorporate the federal CISA guidance in full but instead makes modifications. (“This list is based on federal guidance and amended to reflect the needs of Massachusetts’ unique economy,” the essential businesses document says). The order specifies how companies seeking an exemption or clarification can seek recourse.


This order mainly adopts the federal CISA guidance as it pertains to the essential critical infrastructure workforce. The order asks operating businesses to practice telework, social distancing, and minimum basic operations when practicable and is in effect through April 6.


On March 23, Pennsylvania’s Gov. Wolf issued a “stay at home” order to individuals in Allegheny County, Bucks County, Chester County, Delaware County, Monroe County, Montgomery County, and Philadelphia County.” Individuals in those counties are allowed to travel to and from businesses identified as “life-sustaining” by the standards established by Wolf’s March 20 order, according to this FAQ document. On March 20, Governor Wolf previously issued a waiver extension. The order includes updated business guidance, a FAQ on business guidance, and a business waiver application form. A prescriptive listing of “life-sustaining” businesses can be found here, with specific implications for multiple manufacturing sectors.


On March 22, Tennessee Governor Bill Lee signed Executive Order 17 calling for businesses across the state to utilize alternative business models beginning at midnight CDT on Monday, March 23, 2020, until midnight CDT April 6, 2020. The order also outlines ways businesses and citizens should work to protect vulnerable populations. On March 23, the city of Memphis issued a “stay at home” executive order listing as essential and exempt from that order “manufacturing companies, distributors, and supply chain companies producing, storing, and supplying essential products and services…” For more, contact Kelly Boutwell with the Tennessee Chamber of Commerce