The State of Iowa Board of Regents President Mike Richards followed in Iowa Governor Kim Reynolds’ footsteps and declared the recent spread of COVID-19 a State of Emergency in Iowa’s public universities.
The statement was released midday on Wednesday, March 18 and highly recommends social distancing measures be taken to mitigate the spreading of the disease.
Per the statement, the Board of Regents has been taking the advice of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the Iowa Department of Public Health, the Governor’s Office and more.
“Yesterday the Board [of Regents] had a meeting [...] to give the Board President the flexibility to waive policies in the Board Policy Manual in the event of an emergency,” said Board of Regents Senior Communications Director Josh Lehman.
When this addition was passed, President Richards officially waived a number of Board policies and rules to help the public institutions under the Board keep their employees and attendees safe and healthy.
The policies waived granted employees more paid sick and family leave, allowed public universities to move all classes online and stated the Board of Regents will assist in implementing these actions at all institutions
The State of Emergency will remain in effect in Iowa’s public institutions until President Richards officially declares it has passed.