INFORMATION ABOUT THE CORONAVIRUS OUTBREAK
“As your representative, I want to ensure you have the most up to date information on the developing Coronavirus (COVID-19) situation, and the steps being taken at the federal and state level to keep people safe. It is important that people have access to accurate information and are aware of the resources available to them.
If all of us do our part in addressing this public health challenge we can minimize its negative effects. You have my pledge that I will continue to do what I can as your federal representative in Congress. ” – Rep. Paul Mitchell
Phase One: H.R. 6074, Coronavirus Preparedness & Response Supplemental
- Congress passed on a bipartisan basis and the President signed a $8.3 billion supplemental spending bill to ensure our nation is prepared for a disease outbreak and emerging health threats abroad. This bill directs funds for purchasing essential equipment and supplies, assisting state and local health departments, making diagnostic tests more broadly available, and accelerating the development of a vaccine. These are just some of the provisions included to address the developing situation. To read a summary of the supplemental spending bill, click here.
Phase Two: H.R. 6201, Families First Coronavirus Response Act
- Congress passed and the President signed the second Coronavirus response bill, the Families First Coronavirus Response Act. This package bolsters unemployment insurance, provides emergency nutritional assistance for vulnerable Americans, ensures free COVID-19 testing for all Americans, and requires paid sick leave for impacted workers, among other provisions. For a summary of the bill, click here.
Phase Three: H.R. 748, Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Support (CARES) Act
- Congress passed and the President signed the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Support (CARES) Act. This relief bill is the third legislative package to support families, workers, and small businesses who have been impacted by the Coronavirus pandemic. The CARES Act provides grants and loans to small businesses, sends direct checks to individuals up to $1,200, and rushes resources to hospitals and frontline medical providers, among many more provisions. For a section by section summary of the bill, click here. For a one page summary of the bill, click here.
- Helpful Resources:
Other Actions by the Federal Government
- **The Latest** On March 31, the Treasury Department released guidance on the new Paycheck Protection Program Loan for small businesses created by the CARES Act, including a link for the application. For more information, visit home.treasury.gov/cares
- On March 29, President Trump announced that his Administration was extending the CDC's guidelines for slowing the spread of the coronavirus until at least April 30th. These initial guidelines can be found here.
- On March 20, Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin announced this year’s tax filing deadline moved from April 15 to July 15, giving people and businesses an extra 90 days to file their taxes. I sent two letters urging Secretary Mnuchin to extend the deadline in order to give Americans this flexibility. You can read the first letter here, and the second letter here.
- On March 13, the President declared a national emergency over Coronavirus. This declaration allows for more federal funds, supplies, and personnel to be made available to Americans impacted by the virus.
- A public health emergency has been declared in the United States. This is a temporary designation that gives the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services flexibility in how they allocate funds and personnel.
- The National Institutes of Health are actively working with pharmaceutical companies on developing a vaccine for COVID-19.
- Multiple travel advisories have been issued to inform travelers about current issues that could affect their health. For a full list of these, click here.
- On March 23, Governor Whitmer signed a "Stay Home, Stay Safe" Executive Order. This order directs Michigan businesses and operations to temporarily suspend in-person operations that are not "necessary to sustain or protect life". Residents can still perform tasks necessary for the health and safety of their families, such as going to the grocery store or pharmacy. You can read the full order here.
- On March 19, the U.S. Small Business Administration granted the Governor's request for a statewide Economic Injury Disaster declaration. The Michigan Congressional delegation sent a letter in support of this effort, which you can review here.
- Beginning Monday, March 16 at 3:00 pm through March 30 at 11:59 pm the following places of public accomodation will be closed: restaurants, cafes, coffee houses, bars, taverns, brewpubs, distilleries, clubs, movie theaters, indoor and outdoor performance venues, gymnasiums, fitness centers, recreation centers, indoor sports facilities, indoor exercise facilities, exercise studios, spas, and casinos. To read the Governor's executive order, click here.
- Governor Whitmer issued an executive order banning public gatherings of 50 people or more in the state of Michigan. This took effect on March 17, 2020 at 9:00 am and will continue through April 5, 2020 at 5:00 pm. To read the executive order, click here.
- On March 12, Governor Whitmer ordered the closure of all K-12 schools beginning Monday, March 16 through Sunday, April 5. School buildings are scheduled to reopen Monday, April 6.
- As of February 28, Michigan activated the State Emergency Operation Center to coordinate all state agencies against the spread of Coronavirus.
- As of February 29, Michigan state laboratories can use their own tests for the virus, rather than send all samples through the CDC.
Resources from the CDC
Small Business Resources
- The Treasury Department released guidance on the new Paycheck Protection Program Loan created by the CARES Act, including a link for the application. For more information, visit home.treasury.gov/cares
- The Small Business Administration's activities and support efforts are rapidly developing in response to Coronavirus. The best public information is available here.
- Small businesses in Michigan are eligible for Economic Injury Disaster Loans through the Small Business Administration. To apply for these loans, click here.
- The deadline to apply for an Economic Injury Disaster Loan is December 21, 2020.
- For additional information or to obtain help preparing the loan application, please contact the Michigan SBA Offices in Detroit or Grand Rapids.
- The CARES Act included numerous provisions to support small businesses. For more information on small business provisions in the CARES Act, click here.
- You can also find a webinar geared toward answering Small Business questions put together by my office.
- The Department of Labor has information for employers regarding paid sick leave requirements, which you can find here.
- The U.S. Chamber of Commerce has put together a Small Business Guide and Checklist, which you can find here.
- If you're looking for ways your business can help, visit FEMA's website.
- For questions, you can call the COVID-19 Hotline number is 888-535-6136, 7 days a week from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.
- You can also email COVID19@michigan.gov 24/7. Emails will be answered 7 days a week, 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.
- Michigan Response
- Find your local health department
- Locate your school meal pickup site
- Volunteer Opportunities
- U.S. Department of Health and Human Services
- U.S. Department of Education
- U.S. Department of Agriculture
- U.S. Department of Labor
- U.S. Department of Homeland Security
- U.S. Department of State
- U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs
- U.S. Environmental Protection Agency
- U.S. Small Business Administration
- Centers for Medicare and Medicaid