Coronavirus Newsletter Update, April 17th, 2020
April 17th, 2020
Thank you for your support and cooperation as we have worked together to combat the COVID-19 outbreak. Due to selfless Americans like you who are practicing social distancing and helping us flatten the curve, we are going to beat this virus and get our nation back to work. Here is another update on all I have done in the last week to move us toward that goal.
GETTING AMERICA BACK TO WORK
On Thursday, I had the honor of being named a member of President Trump’s bipartisan Congressional Economic Task Force to provide the President with advice on how and when to re-open the nation’s economy. I’ve talked to countless North Carolinians over the last several weeks and they’re rightfully concerned about protecting the health of their loved ones and getting clarity on how and when we can safely re-open the economy. I strongly believe that data must drive this decision and we must properly time and implement a staggered re-opening based on the unique conditions on the ground in our states, cities, and towns. I’ll continue to work with President Trump and Governor Cooper in the weeks ahead as North Carolinians keep doing their part to defeat this virus and get ready to begin our nation’s economic recovery.
Click below to watch my recent interview with WXII’s Kenny Beck for more on the strategy to re-open the economy
FIGHTING TO REPLENISH THE PAYCHECK PROTECTION PROGRAM
The Paycheck Protection Program (PPP), a critical aspect of the CARES Act that has provided over 3,786 approved loans totaling $5.72 billion for North Carolina small businesses during the COVID-19 outbreak, officially ran out of funding this week. While I have been calling for over a week for Congress to pass an additional $250 billion for the PPP while we work on a more comprehensive Phase 4 bill, the Democrats keep blocking this effort. Speaker Pelosi and Minority Leader Schumer are fully aware that small business owners across the nation desperately need more help, and their decision to reject a no-brainer proposal to provide that immediate help is cynical partisan politics at its worst. I will continue to work on solutions to help North Carolinians in need, and I hope Speaker Pelosi and Minority Leader Schumer come to their senses so we can see more PPP success stories in North Carolina, like at the Green Monkey in Raleigh and Bitty & Beau’s Coffee Shop in Wilmington.
OTHER CARES ACT WINS FOR NORTH CAROLINA
Although Schumer and Pelosi may be holding us back regarding one aspect of the CARES Act, the legislation has delivered big for North Carolina over the last week. The CARES Act:
Provided direct relief checks to North Carolinians starting this week.
Allocated $919M in funding to assist NC’s health care providers to ensure our brave men and women working around the clock to combat COVID-19 and we must ensure they have the resources they need.
Allocated $378 million in funding to assist North Carolina’s higher education institutions and students to prevent disruptions to their studies and the pursuit of their academic and professional goals.
Allocated $238 million to North Carolina airports to allow them to maintain operations and payroll as we continue to work together to get through this crisis
HOLDING CHINA ACCOUNTABLE
I was outraged to read Fox News’ report this week that COVID-19 may have originated in a Chinese lab. China has continuously lied to us when it comes to COVID-19 and they cost us valuable time to prepare our response effort. They need to answer questions about this story and we need to hold them accountable. When Congress returns to session, I will be working with my colleagues on measures to do so.
Click below to take my poll and let me know if you agree.
KEEP IT UP
Remember – we are all in this together. The more you follow the social distancing guidelines that President Trump and Governor Cooper are issuing, the sooner we will beat this virus and begin our economic recovery. Thank you for allowing me to share these updates, and God bless you!