COVID-19’s Effects on Local Governments From the Perspective of Local Government Officials

June 2021
Walter Aguilar

Every year, the Center for Local, State, and Urban Policy (CLOSUP) sends the Michigan Public Policy Survey (MPPS) to local government officials all over the state. The MPPS is a program of state-wide surveys of local government leaders in Michigan with the goal of filling an important information gap in the policy maker process.  In the Spring 2020 MPPS, questions related to COVID-19 were added for local government officials to answer. From closed businesses to packed hospitals, local governments have been dealing with many problems in their jurisdictions. Using data from the Spring 2020 Michigan Public Policy Survey (MPPS), this paper will analyze the responses of local government officials to determine how the pandemic has impacted local jurisdictions. Specifically, the paper will focus on how COVID-19 has impacted three areas of concern for local governments: economic conditions, emergency planning, and local or regional emergency response capabilities. In each of these areas, there will be background information, along with findings of the MPPS. Through this analysis on the effects of COVID-19 from the perspective of local government officials, we hope that this research can help local jurisdictions all over Michigan be better prepared for future emergencies.