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On September 6, California Governor Gavin Newsom signed an Executive Order (E.O.) instructing state agencies to evaluate how generative artificial intelligence (GenAI) may impact the State and its residents. Specifically, the E.O. requires certain state agencies to provide a report to the Governor which will examine “the most significant, potentially beneficial uses” of GenAI tools by the state. The report must also discuss “the potential risks to individuals, communities, and government and state government workers” from GenAI tools. Certain California agencies, including the Department of Technology, must perform a “risk analysis of potential threats to and vulnerabilities of California’s critical energy infrastructure by the use of GenAI.” The E.O. also requires that the State issue “general guidelines for public sector procurement, uses, and required training for use of GenAI,” and consider pilots of GenAI projects to be tested in “sandboxes.” Lastly, the E.O. directs the State to pursue a formal partnership with certain California higher education institutions to study the impacts of GenAI and support its safe growth.
On April 1, Utah Governor Gary Herbert issued an order instituting a moratorium on residential evictions for individuals out of work or otherwise unable to pay rent as a direct result of Covid-19 provided certain conditions are met. The temporary order went into effect immediately and is effective through May 15. Herbert’s announcement did not institute rent forgiveness during the leniency period.
On March 31, South Carolina Governor Henry McMaster signed an executive order closing non-essential businesses and public venues. McMaster’s order gave the South Carolina Department of Commerce the ability to review and designate essential businesses in the state, and where necessary, consult with the state attorney general for further clarification. The order followed a declared state of emergency announced by McMaster on March 13.
On March 30, the Arkansas governor issued an executive order suspending certain provisions of the Arkansas Code regarding notaries public for the duration of the emergency. The executive order permits an official signature or seal of a notarial certificate or seal to be executed when the principal or signer is present remotely. It also suspends provisions requiring electronic notaries public when a notary public is an Arkansas-licensed attorney, Arkansas-licensed title agent, or is employed by a financial institution registered with the Arkansas State Bank Department and the document signer or witness is present via real-time audio and visual means.
Colorado issues executive order temporarily suspending the personal appearance requirement for notarization due to the presence of Covid-19
On March 27, the Colorado governor issued an executive order temporarily suspending the requirement to appear personally before notarial officers to perform notarizations. The order authorizes the Secretary of State to issue temporary emergency rules to permit notarial officers to perform remote notarizations. The order does not affect the rights or duties of parties to existing contracts of insurance or other private contracts that may require or anticipate in-person notarization of documents. The order expires within 30 days of issuance, unless extended further by executive order.
On March 25, Kentucky Governor Andy Beshear issued an executive order mandating that only “life-sustaining businesses” may remain open and encouraged citizens to remain “healthy at home.” The list of life-sustaining businesses includes banks, credit unions, mortgage companies, payday lenders, check cashers, money transmitters, and securities institutions.
On March 24, the Indiana governor issued a Stay at Home Order, for all residents except for those leaving their homes or residences for essential activities, essential governmental functions, or to participate in essential business and operations. Essential business and operations include financial and insurance institutions.
On March 23, Georgia’s governor issued an Executive Order ordering specific populations to shelter in place and limiting the number of persons gathered in a single location. The order does not address financial institutions or otherwise identify categories of essential business, and expires on April 6.
On March 23, the Massachusetts governor ordered all businesses providing non-essential services to close their brick and mortar premises as of noon on March 24 and not to re-open until April 7. The order was accompanied by a list of essential services that included financial services. The Massachusetts Division of Banks confirmed via a notice that all entities chartered and licensed by the Division are considered essential services exempt from the governor’s emergency order.
On September 16, California Governor Jerry Brown signed AB 2354, a bill that expands the definition of a “vehicle service contract” to include agreements to repair, replace, or maintain any of the vehicle’s mechanical components, conditioned upon the use of a specific lubricant, treatment, fluid, or additive. The law goes into effect on January 1, 2017. In similar fashion, the Missouri legislature recently voted to override the Governor’s veto of HB 1976, thus expanding the definition of “extended service contracts” to include tire and wheel replacement, dent repair, key and key fob replacement, and other ancillary services as approved by the Director of Insurance. The Missouri law will also eliminate the requirement that a provider pay a full refund to the contract holder if the contract is cancelled during the initial 20-day period, providing instead the option to give a credit to the contract holder or a specified designee.