In this update:
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How to get state-related assistance during the coronavirus shutdown
While my offices are still not accepting in-person office visits or taking in-person meetings, our offices are handling constituent-related issues during this time.
Here are the various ways you can contact me:
District Office – 717-741-4648 (leave a voicemail)
Capitol Office – 717-787-7085 (leave a voicemail)
Email – SenatorKristin@pasen.gov
Contact Form – SenatorKristin.com/contact-me.
Resource guides for employers, employees, and other individuals affected by COVID-19 are also posted at SenatorKristin.com.
Please note: Due to the high volume of inquiries our office has received over the last several weeks, please only contact our office one way as this will ensure we handle your matter and can assist others in a timely manner. I really appreciate everyone’s patience during this time.
Confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Pennsylvania nearly 20,000; York County has 283 cases
The Department of Health released their latest data that show York County has 283 confirmed cases of the coronavirus (COVID-19). Pennsylvania currently has 19,979 confirmed cases.
More information from the Department of Health can be found here. Follow me on Facebook and Twitter for the most up-to-date information.
Are you interested in hearing how our local health system is adapting to this pandemic? Listen to my recent podcast here. Earlier today, interviewed Kevin Schreiber to get an update on the local economy and programs out there to help employees and employers. You can listen to that here, or read more about it here.
Wishing you and your family Happy Easter and Happy Passover
This weekend is especially important to those of Christian and Jewish faiths. At sunset on Wednesday, our friends of the Jewish faith celebrated the beginning of Passover. On Sunday, those of us of the Christian faith will celebrate Easter.
York County is home to many diverse faiths and backgrounds. I want to wish you and your family a joyful celebration.
To those of the Christian faith, I want to wish you and your family a Happy Easter. To those of the Jewish faith, I want to wish you and your family a Happy Passover.
While this pandemic will likely cause us to be away from our loved ones and friends, I hope you will find time to Skype, FaceTime or Zoom together to share this special holiday weekend that means so much to so many of our neighbors of faith.
PENNVEST approves $450 million loan program for hospitals impacted by COVID-19
A new loan program offered by the Department of Community and Economic Development and the Pennsylvania Infrastructure Investment Authority will provide critical funding to hospitals during the coronavirus public health emergency.
The Hospital Emergency Loan Program (HELP) will allow eligible hospitals to apply for up to $10 million in short-term funding to deal with the surge in patients from COVID-19. Some of the eligible uses of funding include building or constructing temporary structures, retrofitting facilities, and leasing property, equipment and supplies.
Loan applications will be accepted April 13 through 20. Learn more here.
Latest podcast features Kevin Schreiber, President & CEO of York County Economic Alliance regarding latest on local economy amid COVID-19 pandemic
My recent podcast episode features a wide-ranging interview with Kevin Schreiber, President and CEO of the York County Economic Alliance (YCEA), regarding the coronavirus’ (COVID-19) impact on the local economy.
Schreiber and his team at YCEA have been working with federal, state, county and local leaders, along with the private sector, to connect resources to areas in need. At the onset of the pandemic, YCEA worked with local partners in the community to create PreparedYork.com – a one-stop shop for those who are affected by the coronavirus.
You can listen to the podcast here. You can learn more about today’s podcast here.
Governor Wolf orders all schools closed for remainder of academic year
All K-12 public and private schools in Pennsylvania will now remain closed through the end of the 2019-20 school year, as ordered by Governor Wolf.
The governor’s order also applies to all Pre-K Counts, Head Start Supplemental Assistance Programs and Preschool Early Intervention programs. Institutions of higher education are also prohibited from meeting for in-person classes for the remainder of the school year.
In order to help school districts manage extended closures during the current public health emergency, I supported passage of a law last month that waives the requirement for schools to provide 180 days of instructional time for the 2019-20 school year. The Department of Education is encouraging schools to provide instruction to students through continuity of education plans through the remainder of the academic year.
More information is available here about resources to help schools continue to educate students.
Hospital preparedness dashboard offers critical COVID-19 info
Hospitals throughout the state are gearing up to address new cases of COVID-19 in the days and weeks ahead. A hospital preparedness dashboard is maintained and updated regularly by the Department of Health, and the department reports it is working to create a system to ensure all available resources like personal protection equipment, ventilators and medical supplies can be allocated where they are needed most.
A detailed breakdown of the number of COVID-19 hospitalizations, available hospital and ICU beds, total ventilators available or in use, and much more is available on the hospital preparedness dashboard here. Both statewide and county data are available on the webpage.
Reminder: Utility customer assistance programs available during COVID-19 emergency
Major utility providers throughout the state are offering a number of special programs to help customers who are struggling to pay bills due to the coronavirus public health emergency. Payment plans, hardship funds, budget billing and other options are available to help individuals and families during these unprecedented times.
A number of these programs are time-sensitive, so customers should contact their utility providers as soon as possible to find out what assistance programs are available. More information about the different kinds of programs and services to help utility customers is available on the Pennsylvania Public Utility Commission’s website.
Series of waivers aimed at supporting Pennsylvania’s coronavirus response efforts
More than 30 waivers were issued by the Department of State in response to the coronavirus emergency. The links below offer information on some of the waivers that have been announced over the past several weeks.
Waivers that have been granted to healthcare practitioners include:
A number of license renewal deadlines have also been extended and other requirements relaxed due to coronavirus mitigation, including:
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