COVID-19 Federal Updates: April 20
Updated: Jun 9, 2020
As of Sunday, nearly three months since the first confirmed case of the coronavirus was reported in the United States, there are over 746,300 confirmed cases of the virus in America, according to data compiled by Johns Hopkins University.
Cases of COVID-19 have been reported in at least 212 countries and territories, according to the World Health Organization.
According to the Johns Hopkins data, over 2,382,000 people have been infected globally.
The White House and congressional Democrats may be closing in on an agreement for a $450 billion economic relief package to replenish a depleted emergency fund for small businesses and to expand coronavirus testing around the country, with votes on the measure possible early this week. Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin described the broad outlines of the package:
The agreement may include $300 billion to replenish the emergency fund, called the Paycheck Protection Program; $50 billion for the Small Business Administration’s disaster relief fund; $75 billion for hospitals and $25 billion for testing.
The Senate is scheduled for a pro forma session Monday, but no vote has been set.
The House announced it could meet as soon as Wednesday for a vote on the pending package, according to a schedule update from Majority Leader Steny Hoyer.
Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin said he was hopeful of a deal that could pass Congress quickly and get the Small Business Administration program back up by midweek.
The President says he will be using the Defense Production Act to compel companies to make swabs for COVID-19 testing.
President Trump shared that the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services is in the process of finalizing guidelines that would allow for elective surgeries to resume.
The White House submitted this fact sheet on its federal guidelines for reopening the country.
Sunday evening, the Treasury Department and Customs and Border Protection issued a joint Temporary Interim Final Rule providing importers, who have faced a significant financial hardship due to the outbreak, with the option for a 90-day deferment period on the payment of duties, taxes, and fees.
The Department of Homeland Security released its third version of CISA Guidance on Essential Critical Infrastructure Workers. As a reminder, the Ohio Stay at Home Order included industries listed under the CISA guidance as “essential.” You can read Version 3.0 of the CISA Guidance here.
An FCC COVID-19 telehealth program will provide $200 million in funding, appropriated by Congress as part of the CARES Act.
Additional Federal Guidance (as of April 19, 2020 at 6:00 p.m.):
HHS - Secretary Azar Statement on New Partnership to Develop National Strategy for COVID-19 Therapies and Vaccines (Click here)
CDC - Serology Testing for COVID-19 (Click here)
FDA - Shopping for Food During the COVID-19 Pandemic - Information for Consumers (Click here)
NIH - NIH to launch public-private partnership to speed COVID-19 vaccine and treatment options (Click here)
Treasury/SBA - Statement from Secretary Steven T. Mnuchin and Administrator Jovita Carranza on the Success of the Paycheck Protection Program (Click here)
Treasury/VA - VA Partners with Treasury Department to Deliver Economic Impact Payments to Veterans and Survivors (Click here)
SBA - Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) Report (Click here)
FCC - COVID-19 Telehealth Program (Click here)
DOL - U.S. Department of Labor Considers Employer’s Good Faith Efforts When Enforcing Compliance During Coronavirus Pandemic (Click here)
EPA - EPA Announces Coronavirus (COVID-19) Resources for State, Local, and Tribal Governments (Click here)