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Massachusetts’ Speaker of the House Robert DeLeo Delivers Remote Chamber Address on Vision for the Remainder of Legislative Session

May 21, 2020 | Blog | By Steven Baddour, Daniel Connelly, Caitlin Beresin, Kaitlyn Sprague, Taylor Shepherd

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Massachusetts’ Reopening Advisory Board Releases Reopening Report

May 18, 2020 | Blog | By Steven Baddour, Daniel Connelly, Kaitlyn Sprague, Caitlin Beresin, Taylor Shepherd

Today, the Baker-Polito Administration’s Reopening Advisory Board published their report outlining a 4-phase schedule for reopening the Commonwealth since the closure of non-essential businesses on March 23.
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This update covers federal and Massachusetts responses to the pandemic, including the House Democrats’ phase 4 economic stimulus proposal, the SBA’s report on PPP implementation plus criticism of how it manages EIDL, and Massachusetts’s reopening plan and its proposed $1B supplemental budget to cover Covid-19 spending.
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This update covers federal and Massachusetts responses to the pandemic, including the U.S. Treasury Implementation of CARES Act programs, new proposals for small- and mid-sized businesses, the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP), and new Massachusetts rules related to masks, car dealers, and retailers.
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Next Steps for 21st Century Cures 2.0

May 8, 2020 | Blog | By Aaron Josephson

On Monday, April 27, Representatives Diana DeGette (D-CO) and Fred Upton (R-MI) announced the next steps for 21st Century Cures 2.0 (Cures 2.0), legislation that will build on the original 21st Century Cures Act enacted in December 2016 (Cures 1.0). While Cures 1.0 aimed to speed up the process of bringing new treatments to market, Cures 2.0 is generally envisioned to emphasize public health and streamlined care delivery, particularly in light of the COVID-19 pandemic. Elements envisioned to be in Cures 2.0 were outlined in a recently published concept paper that we discuss in this post.
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Rough Seas for COVID-19 Serology Tests Lead to Course Correction by FDA

May 5, 2020 | Blog | By Joanne Hawana, Hope Foster, Aaron Josephson

Responding to increased public and congressional criticism of its arguably too-flexible approach to regulatory oversight of serological tests used to detect COVID-19 antibodies, on May 4, 2020 the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) announced a revised policy aimed at reducing the risks associated with such tests.
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This update covers federal and Massachusetts responses to the pandemic, including the Main Street Lending Program and the Municipal Liquidity Fund, Phase 4 stimulus provisions for disabled Americans, funding for Massachusetts nursing homes and congregate care, the state’s Reopening Advisory Board, and more.
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This update discusses the new federal interim stimulus package, negotiations for the Phase 4 package, the Municipal Liquidity Facility, the SMART fund, plans to reopen the Massachusetts economy, and more.
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The Sobering Truth behind COVID-19’s Impact on Massachusetts’ Annual Budget

April 20, 2020 | Blog | By Steven Baddour, Daniel Connelly, Caitlin Beresin, Kaitlyn Sprague, Taylor Shepherd

Economists create graphs, charts and projections on the economy daily, crafting commentary to explain the ebbs and flows of market success and failures based on a variety of factors. That is no longer the case as the nation battles the novel coronavirus (“COVID-19”). Economist’s projections are at the mercy of the raging virus as many states enter “the surge”, compromising health care systems, learning institutions and local economies nationwide.
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Read ML Strategies' analysis of federal and state legislative and regulatory responses to public health and economic issues related to the COVID-19 pandemic.
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ML Strategies' analysis of federal and state legislative and regulatory responses to public health and economic issues related to the COVID-19 pandemic.
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What You Need to Know: State and Federal Updates Related to COVID-19

April 3, 2020 | Blog | By R. Neal Martin, Taylor Shepherd

As the coronavirus pandemic spreads across the nation, your team at ML Strategies continues to monitor legislative and regulatory updates at the federal and state level. Each week, ML Strategies will provide weekly updates from Massachusetts and Washington, DC to keep you informed and aware of relief opportunities and guidance for your businesses and companies.
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As the coronavirus pandemic spreads across the nation, your team at ML Strategies continues to monitor legislative and regulatory updates at the federal and state level. Each week, ML Strategies will provide weekly updates from Massachusetts and Washington, DC to keep you informed and aware of relief opportunities and guidance for your businesses and companies. If you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to reach out to ML Strategies professionals who are closely monitoring developments as they happen.
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Massachusetts: Corporate Board of Directors and Shareholders Meetings Changes as a Result of COVID-19

April 1, 2020 | Blog | By Daniel Connelly, Steven Baddour, Caitlin Beresin, Kaitlyn Sprague, Taylor Shepherd

This week, Governor Charlie Baker issued COVID-19 Order No. 19, “Order Regarding the Conduct of Shareholder Meetings by Public Companies.  This Order, which is effective immediately, suspends certain requirements of M.G.L. chapter 156D, section 7.08 that relate to shareholder meetings by remote means.
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BREAKING NEWS: Governor Baker Extends Non-Essential Business Closures until Monday, May 4th

March 31, 2020 | Blog | By Steven Baddour, Daniel Connelly, Caitlin Beresin, Kaitlyn Sprague, Taylor Shepherd

Governor Charlie Baker just announced he is extending his executive order that mandates the closure of non-essential businesses.
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Tackling False Claims Being Made for COVID-19 Treatments and Products

March 24, 2020 | Blog | By Christian Tamotsu Fjeld, Joanne Hawana, Karen Lovitch, Joseph MIller, Aaron Josephson

Two weeks ago, on March 9, the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) and the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) sent warning letters to seven companies that allegedly made false or deceptive claims about their products’ ability to treat Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19).  The agencies warned the companies that their health claims lacked credible supporting evidence and emphasized the FDA does not recognize a vaccine, drug, or treatment for the disease.  
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Congress and the White House Continue Efforts to Respond to Coronavirus

March 19, 2020 | Blog | By Anthony DeMaio, David Chorney

The response to the coronavirus situation is fluid and fast-moving – particularly by Congress’ standards.  In response to the coronavirus pandemic, three phases of legislation have been considered in Congress: Coronavirus Supplemental Appropriations Act (signed into law March 6th); Families First Coronavirus Response Act (signed into law March 18th); and a large ($1 trillion+) economic recovery package (currently being drafted). This post provides details about these legislative efforts and other recent actions by the White House to address the coronavirus pandemic.
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Financial Relief for the Small Business Community in Massachusetts

March 19, 2020 | Blog | By Steven Baddour, Daniel Connelly, Caitlin Beresin, Kaitlyn Sprague, Taylor Shepherd

The Baker Administration, along with prioritizing the medial professionals on the front lines of the fight against the novel coronavirus (“COVID-19”), have taken significant steps to relieve pressures on small businesses negatively impacted by the virus.  Most notably, opportunities through the Small Business Administration’s (“SBA”) Economic Injury Disaster Loan program and other tax relief for small businesses including those in the restaurant and hospitality sectors.
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On Wednesday, key Members of the House of Representatives sent a letter to the Chairman of the Federal Trade Commission (FTC), urging the Commission “to take immediate action to protect consumers from price gouging during this [COVID-19] declared public emergency.”  The letter was sent to FTC Chairman Joseph Simons from the chairs of the committees and subcommittees with jurisdiction over the FTC:
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FDA’s Ongoing Response to the COVID-19 (Coronavirus) Outbreak

March 18, 2020 | Blog | By Joanne Hawana, Aaron Josephson, Benjamin Zegarelli

As we write this update on the actions of the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), more state and local governments (along with private businesses and employers) are taking sweeping actions to protect the public from the continued spread of COVID-19. The federal response to what is now a pandemic of COVID-19 started off slowly, but we are now seeing frequent and promising announcements from FDA and other agencies within the Department of Health and Human Services.

We published our first installment highlighting FDA’s role in this public health emergency on March 4, 2020 (see our prior post here). In the two weeks that have elapsed since then, FDA has taken several actions related to COVID-19 testing and other important public health protections which are explained below. One of the most striking things about the list of actions included in this post may be how diverse and broad FDA’s authorities are and what a substantial role the agency plays in protecting Americans from a variety of different types of harm.
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