Insights: Guidelines for Reopening Churches; CalEITC

Bishops Welcome Re-Opening Guidelines

On Monday, Governor Newsom and the California Department of Public Health released guidelines for churches in the state to begin the re-opening process. The guidelines are fundamentally in alignment with the reopening plans prepared by the Catholic dioceses  in California and elsewhere in the world.

“The public celebration of the Holy Mass and other services will resume as quickly as local conditions and safety permits with proper physical distancing and appropriate precautions. Each (arch)diocese will decide for itself, in consultation with local health officials,” said the bishops in a published statement.  (See for a directory of dioceses and their re-opening announcements.)

The guidelines call for wearing masks, social distancing to continue and limit church attendance to 25 percent of maximum capacity, or 100 attendees, whichever number is lower. After 21 days, public health officials will evaluate the feasibility of increasing capacity.

Please contact your local diocese for the latest on your parish. Click here for a list of dioceses.


Abortion Co-Payment Bill Fails in Assembly Health Committee

The Planned Parenthood-backed bill Assembly Bill 1973 (Kamlager – D, Los Angeles), that would have eliminated deductibles, co-payments, or other cost-sharing requirements for abortions under Medi-Cal, a health care service plan, or an individual or group disability insurance policy, failed to secure a hearing in the Assembly Health Committee and will not be moving forward this legislative session.

The failure of the bill to move forward illustrates the Legislature’s narrow choices this year forced upon the state by the pandemic.  Under the direction of legislative leaders, all bills are to be limited to COVID-19, wildfire safety, or homelessness. In addition, lawmakers are focused on passing the state budget, which has a June 15 constitutional deadline.

Budget subcommittees are beginning to outline some of the priorities and goals they are considering. To view the available budget breakdowns: CA Department of Finance I CA State Senate I CA State Assembly (TBD)


Support the Expansion of the California Earned Income Tax Credit

The CalEITC (California Earned Income Tax Credit) tackles California’s poverty crisis by providing much needed assistance to working families and individuals struggling to make ends meet. While California has made improvements to the credit since it was established in 2015, one population continues to be excluded: those who file their taxes with a federally assigned Individual Tax Identification Number (ITIN). 

Thank you to the many who already responded to the Action Alert on EITC that we sent out last week.  We’re pleased to report that the pending State Senate version of the CalETIC budget item includes ITIN filers with at least one child six years or younger.

It’s important to ensure that the budget passes with this in place.  If you have not already sent an email, please do so now.  We need to keep pressure on the State Senate to keep the ITIN component in the CalETIC item and keep encouraging the Assembly to discuss and insert it in their budget package!

Take Action Now! 



#Prayer liberates us from our instinct toward violence. It is a gaze directed toward God, so that He might take care of the human heart. #GeneralAudience @Pontifex


May 29, 2020
Vol. 13, No. 19

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