• Here’s what we know about Massachusetts’ reopening plan
  • Massachusetts businesses show guarded optimism as reopening approaches
  • Borrowing bill heads to Governor’s desk
  • Job losses hit 1 million mark in Massachusetts
  • No consensus reached on vote-by-mail bills
  • Democratic National Convention leaders weighing options
  • Friday’s Silver Lining: German café uses pool noodle as social distancing marker
  1. A forthcoming report from the Reopening Advisory Board that will lay out the state’s reopening plan in detail is due Monday, the same day Governor Baker’s order closing nonessential businesses and stay-at-home advisory is set to expire. Business will begin to reopen in phases. The state has issued mandatory safety standards that apply to all businesses in the “Start” phase.


  1. Business leaders across Massachusetts are cautious, yet bullish, on the state’s reopening.Respondents to two recent statewide polls showed guarded optimism as an overall theme to a post COVID-19 economy.


  1. Governor Charlie Baker is expected to sign a bill allowing State Treasurer Deb Goldberg to borrow money in order to cover the Commonwealth’s shortfall due to the delayed income tax deadline. The bipartisan bill was enacted by the Senate and sent to the Governor after a delay in voting rules in the House.


  1. More than 1 million Massachusetts workers have lost jobs since the outset of COVID-19. Nationally, 36.5 million have filed for unemployment according to U.S. Labor Department figures.


  1. Advocates testified to the benefits of expanding voter programs, including universal vote-by-mail and a more robust early vote program during Thursday’s virtual hearing of the Joint Committee on Elections Laws. Currently, there are eight independent bills before the committee for consideration, as well as a proposal from Secretary of State Bill Galvin.


  1. The Democratic National Convention scheduled to take place in Milwaukee this August is weighing options, including going virtual. While no final decisions have been made, this week the rules and bylaws committee adopted changes allowing delegates to participate in the convention remotely.


  1. READER SUBMITTED: A café in Germany is utilizing pool noodles to ensure customers maintain social distancing. Yup, you read that right. The café is attaching pool noodles to hats to ensure patrons keep their distance from one another. And yes, we have a pic.