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Princeton NJ Local Government Announcements

Princeton's Daily Coronavirus Update-March 26, 2020

We are increasing the frequency of our email communications during the coronavirus crisis from weekly to daily in order to keep you better informed.  At times like these it is crucial that we be able to communicate directly with our residents. Please share this signup link with your friends and neighbors and encourage them to sign up to receive announcements: https://princeton.seamlessdocs.com/f/covidemaillist 

DAILY VIDEO UPDATE
Today's video update features Princeton's Board of Health Chair George DiFerdinando Jr. with tips on how to shop safely, and steps our local grocery stores have taken to keep their employees and customers healthy. 
https://princetoncovid.org/the-latest/mayor-updates/ 

MEET THE MAYOR GOES VIRTUAL – FRIDAY, MARCH 27
Mayor Lempert will hold her monthly Meet the Mayor open office hours virtually via Zoom instead of in person. Joining Mayor Lempert will be Princeton's Health Officer Jeff Grosser and Chair of the Board of Health Dr. George DiFerdinando. Friday, March 27, 8:30-10am. https://princeton.zoom.us/j/384274418 

SUMMARY OF CONGRESSIONAL BILL
The US Senate passed a massive trillion-dollar aid package late last night. Now it moves to the House of Representatives. Below is a rundown of the major provisions:

Appropriations Highlights

  • $8.8 billion for child nutrition program
  • $15.51 billion for SNAP (this not include an increase in the amount per person. It only covers the anticipated increase in number of people participating in program)
  • $450 million for Emergency Food Assistance Program (food banks)
  • $1.5 billion for Economic Development Administration (economic development grants for state and communities)
  • $850 million for DOJ Byrne JAG (grants directly to state and local law enforcement)
  • $1 billion to Defense Production Act to increase access to material necessary for national security and pandemic recovery
  • $400 million in election security grants (states can utilize them to facilitate vote by mail)
  • $45 billion for FEMA's Disaster Relief Fund
  • $100 million to Assistance for Firefighter Grants for purchase of personal protective equipment and related supplies 
  • $1.032 billion to the Indian Health Service
  • $127 billion to the Public Health and Social Services Emergency Fund
    • $100 billion of this to healthcare providers
    •  $16 billion of this to the Strategic National Stockpile to procure personal protective equipment, ventilators, and other medical supplies
    • $11 billion of this for Vaccines, Therapeutics, Diagnostics, and other Medical or Preparedness Needs
  • $4.3 billion to the CDC
  • $945.5 million to NIH
  • $425 million to Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA)
  • $3.5 billion to Child Care and Development Block Grants
  • $750 million to Head Start 
  • $900 million to Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP)
  • $955 million for Administration for Community Living (funds aging and disability services programs)
  • $13.5 billion for Elementary and Secondary Education (formula funding to states to cover coronavirus-related education expenses)
  • $14.25 for Higher Education (funding to institutions of higher education to cover coronavirus-related expenses)
  • $3 billion in formula funding to states for flexible education spending
  • $17.2 billion for VA medical services, community care, medical emergency management, and medical facilities 
  • $10 billion for Airport grants
  • $25 billion for Transit grants
  • $1.018 billion for Amtrak
  • $5 billion for Community Development Block Grants (CDBG) 
  • $4 billion for Homeless Assistance Grants 
  • $1.25 billion for Tenant-Based Rental Assistance
  • $685 million for Public Housing Operating Fund
  • $1 billion for Project-Based Rental Assistance

State Coronavirus Fund

  • $150 billion for formula funding to states and local governments with over 500,000 people. This would be flexible funding to cover coronavirus-related expenses. 

Expanded Unemployment

  • Creates new pandemic unemployment insurance where individuals can receive $600 a week for 4 months on top of any unemployment benefits they already are eligible for
  • There is a last-minute fight on this where some Republicans are complaining how some people would end up getting more in unemployment benefits than they were getting paid
  • Self-employed, contract, government, and nonprofit workers who are typically ineligible for unemployment insurance would be eligible for this program
  • Creates incentives for states to offer "workshare" where people with reduced hours can receive unemployment to make up the difference
  • Creates incentives for states to eliminate any waiting periods for being eligible 
  • Provides 13 weeks of additional traditional unemployment benefits

Cash Refunds

  • The bill provides for one-time payments of $1,200 for individuals, $2,400 for couples and $500 per child.
  • Individuals are eligible for the full amount if they have adjusted gross income of less than $75,000 a year. The payment is reduced if singles earn up to $99,000. If you earn more than $99,000, you get no benefit.
  • For married couples who file a joint tax return, you get the full amount if your adjusted gross income is less than $150,000. If you earn up to $198,000, you will get a partial payment. Married couples who earn more than $198,000 get no payment at all.

Small Business Assistance

  • There is $375 billion in forgivable loans and grants to small businesses and nonprofits that they can use to keep paying their employees and expenses such as rent and utilities.
    • Loan amounts that go to payroll and other permissible expenses will be forgiven ultimately

Industry Bailouts

  • $500 billion fund for lending to various impacted industries
  • $75 billion is set aside for airline and businesses critical to national security (which is expected to be Boeing)
    • Restricts CEO bonuses and stock buybacks
    • Airline money is designed to ensure it specifically goes to protect payroll of airline employees, resulting in support for these provisions for airline unions. The bill puts restrictions on the ability of airlines to furlough employees or cut pay. 
  • $425 billion would capitalize a lending facility operated by the Federal Reserve for total of $4.25 trillion in loans that would go to assist other affected businesses.
  • Creates a Treasury Department Special Inspector General for Pandemic Recovery to provide oversight of Treasury loans and a Pandemic Response Accountability Committee to protect taxpayer dollars.
  • Creates a real-time public reporting of Treasury transactions under the Act, including terms of loans, investments or other assistance to corporations.  
  • Bans stock buybacks for the term of the government assistance plus 1 year on any company receiving a government loan from the bill.
  • Prohibits businesses controlled by the President, Vice President, Members of Congress, and heads of Executive Departments from receiving loans or investments from Treasury programs.

Other Notable Provisions

  • 1 year delay in REAL ID requirements
  • 6-month deferral on federal student loans
  • Employee Retention Tax Credit where businesses affected by coronavirus can take a limited tax credit for 50% of payroll expenses if they retain employees
  • Employers could defer their payroll tax contributions to be paid back over next 2 years
  • Provides $1.32 billion to community health centers

 

PRINCETONCOVID.ORG – CENTRALIZED SITE FOR COVID INFORMATION & RESOURCES

As part of a joint partnership between the municipality, school district, and library, the Princeton Public Library has created a comprehensive site for coronavirus information and resources for the Princeton community. You will find resources on how to get help, how to volunteer or donate, activities to do from home, local businesses offering delivery, and the latest updates and videos from our health department and municipal offices. https://princetoncovid.org 

LOCAL CASES UPDATE
We are beginning to see an increasing number of cases. This is likely due to increased testing locations in NJ as well as increased community transmission. Because of continued limitations in testing, we should all presume that the prevalence of coronavirus in our community exceeds these figures. All residents have been ordered to stay at home.

  • Confirmed cases: 16
  • Negative test results: 20
  • Persons under investigation (symptomatic): 2
  • Persons under investigation (asymptomatic): 3
  • Persons under investigation (tested): 1
  • Persons under investigation (isolation complete): 19
  • Positive case demographics: men, 11; women, 5

Our Health Office received notification of Princeton's 15th and 16th positive test result today. One is an undergraduate student at Princeton University and the other is a male in his 40s. The department is working on contact tracing and is ensuring the individuals are self-isolating. More info.

 

For more information check out our website and follow us on Facebook and Twitter 

 

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