This is an anxious and uncertain time, and amidst this developing crisis, I am so proud of people throughout Connecticut and the nation who have stepped up to implement best practices and reach out helping hands to neighbors and people in need.
My role is to make sure Congress understands that families and small businesses throughout Connecticut need real, immediate help right now. I'm working with Governor Lamont and my colleagues in the Senate to get help to families, hospitals, schools, and businesses as soon as possible.
In an effort to make sure you have all the information you need to keep you and your family safe, I'm asking my staff to send out daily updates to anyone who has previously e-mailed our office, providing real time information regarding pending legislation in Congress, actions taken by the administration, and updates from Connecticut. If you don’t want to receive these updates you canunsubscribe right here.
Thank you to everyone who has provided input and suggestions during this time. Keep the correspondence coming. And please let us know about emergency situations that me and my staff may be able to help with.
Sincerely, Senator Chris Murphy
Here's what you need to know today, March 18th:
The Senate passed the Families First Coronavirus Response Act. This legislation provides emergency paid leave, enhanced unemployment aid for workers and additional funding to state Medicaid programs. We’ll now shift our focus to a third relief package, which is aimed at ending this health crisis and putting money in the pockets of everyday Americans to avoid a collapse in our economy.
As the Senate begins work on the next legislative package, I urged my colleagues to include a number of items I believe are critical to provide support to the workers and families being hit by the economic impacts of coronavirus. In particular, I am calling for this bill to providedirect cash supportto every American. This proposal would send a $2,000 immediate cash payment to every American adult and child, with additional cash payments should the public health crisis extend, or if the unemployment rate increases. The payments would phase-out for higher-income taxpayers.
Following a request from Governor Ned Lamont, the Small Business Administration (SBA)announcedthat qualifying Connecticut businesses and non-profits can now access Economic Injury Disaster Loans. Small businesses can apply atdisasterloan.sba.gov.Businesses and nonprofit organizations that demonstrate economic injury as a result of COVID-19 may have access to up to $2 million in economic assistance loans. These loans may be used to pay fixed debts, payroll, accounts payable and other bills that can’t be paid because of the virus’s impact.
Testing sites are opening up across Connecticut but anyone seeking to be tested must have a prescription from your doctor and make an appointment in advance. We don’t want to unnecessarily overload our health care system so check the CDC’s website for the symptoms to look out for and what to do if you are sick. If you think you need to get tested first call your primary care doctor. For more information at testing capabilities at your local hospital, call your local hospital hotline or 2-1-1 for more information.
I hope you found this letter helpful. You can get the latest updates by following me on Facebook and Instagram. If you have questions, please don’t hesitate to reach out to our offices in Hartford or in Washington, DC.