Author

Laura Olson

Laura Olson

Laura covers the nation's capital as a senior reporter for States Newsroom, a network of nonprofit outlets that includes Georgia Recorder. Her areas of coverage include politics and policy, lobbying, elections, and campaign finance.

Georgia’s Carr, other GOP AGs slam tax cut ban in pandemic relief law

By: - March 18, 2021

WASHINGTON — Republican attorneys general from Georgia and 20 other states are attacking the $1.9 trillion pandemic relief law as an “unprecedented and unconstitutional infringement” on state sovereignty because it restricts tax cuts by states. The attorneys general in a letter to the Treasury Department threatened to take action against the Biden administration over the […]

‘Vaccine passports’ that show you’re inoculated are on the way

By: - March 17, 2021

WASHINGTON — More than 70 million Americans and about 2 million Georgians have received at least one dose of a COVID-19 vaccine — and along with that shot, a small paper card with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s label detailing the timing and manufacturer of the dose. Those paper cards at the moment […]

States question whether new federal stimulus law rules out tax cuts

By: - March 12, 2021

WASHINGTON — President Joe Biden’s massive pandemic stimulus law pumps a welcome infusion of federal aid into state and local government coffers — but one brief section is raising questions about whether states are barred from cutting their own taxes if they accept the federal help. The Senate added language to the COVID-19 relief package prohibiting […]

Biden to states: Make all adults eligible for COVID vaccine by May 1

By: - March 11, 2021

WASHINGTON — President Joe Biden directed states to make all adults eligible for the COVID-19 vaccine by May 1 in his first primetime address Thursday evening. Biden’s COVID-19 advisers are projecting that enough Americans in priority groups will be able to access the vaccine by the end of April to allow for the lifting of […]

Congress clears giant $1.9T COVID-19 relief package for Biden’s signature

By: - March 10, 2021

WASHINGTON — A sweeping $1.9 trillion coronavirus stimulus package is headed to President Joe Biden’s desk after the U.S. House passed the latest pandemic relief measure Wednesday on a party-line vote. The massive bill includes a new round of $1,400 direct checks for many Americans, including millions of Georgians, as well as an extension of expanded […]

CDC: OK for vaccinated grandparents to visit family with low disease risks

By: - March 8, 2021

WASHINGTON — People who are fully vaccinated against COVID-19 can safely socialize inside with other vaccinated individuals without wearing masks or maintaining distance, federal health officials advised Monday in their first formal guidance for vaccinated Americans. Perhaps more critically at a time when more than 90% of Americans are still waiting to be fully vaccinated, the […]

Senate limits aid for state, local governments in COVID relief bill

By: - March 5, 2021

WASHINGTON — The U.S. Senate voted Thursday to begin debate on President Joe Biden’s $1.9 trillion coronavirus relief bill, after drafting a number of revisions that, among other changes, tweak the aid intended for state and local governments. The legislation approved in the House outlines $350 billion in direct aid to state, local governments, territories and […]

GOP opposes state and local aid as Senate readies vote on COVID bill

By: - March 4, 2021

WASHINGTON — As Democrats seek to send President Joe Biden their latest $1.9 trillion pandemic relief bill, federal lawmakers remain deeply divided on the question of whether state and local governments need another infusion of federal aid. Supporters of the bill — including numerous Republican mayors — say the answer is a clear “yes.” They argue that a […]

Biden urges states to speed up COVID-19 vaccinations for teachers

By: - March 2, 2021

WASHINGTON — President Joe Biden is urging states to prioritize teachers for COVID-19 vaccines, setting a goal of ensuring that every pre-K through 12th grade educator, school staff member and childcare worker is able to receive at least one shot this month. At least 34 states and the District of Columbia have some or all […]

Game-changing one-dose vaccine could be in states’ hands shortly

By: - February 25, 2021

WASHINGTON —States struggling to provide enough COVID-19 vaccines are likely just a few days away from a pivotal development in the vaccination race: the availability of a shot that requires only one dose. The game-changing Johnson & Johnson vaccine would differ from the two current shots by Pfizer and Moderna in several critical ways. By […]

Big uptick in vaccine supply expected soon for Georgia, other states

By: - February 24, 2021

WASHINGTON — Executives from five COVID-19 vaccine manufacturers told Congress Tuesday that they expect to significantly boost the number of shots delivered to states in the coming weeks. Pfizer will increase weekly shipments to more than 13 million doses by mid-March, an increase from the 4 to 5 million doses shipped weekly in early February, […]

Vaccinations slow after storms delay shipments of 6 million COVID doses

By: - February 19, 2021

WASHINGTON — The extreme cold weather across much of the country has delayed 6 million COVID-19 vaccine doses, slowing a vaccination rate that has been steadily rising since the Biden administration took office last month. The backlogged doses account for roughly three days’ of delayed shipments affecting all 50 states, due to road closures, snowed-in […]