COVID-19 Mid-week Updates and Information

For the most up-to-date information and resources for COVID-19, please visit my website here.

If you filed a tax return in 2018/2019 but did not provide banking information for direct deposit, be sure to look here to submit your banking info and get your stimulus check quickly.

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Requesting Funding for New York Hospitals

Last week, I sent a bipartisan letter, along with members of the New York Congressional Delegation, requesting that the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) reconsider their potential decision to allocate hospital funding to hospitals based on Medicare payment data. Despite the disproportionate scale of the COVID-19 crisis in New York, HHA has chosen not to give New York priority when distributing funding appropriated by Congress as part of the recently passed CARES Act. The letter outlines the impact that COVID-19 has made on New York hospitals and requests that they be prioritized for funding. The allocation of funding by HHS based on Medicare payment data does not take into account the effects that COVID-19 has had on our New York State hospitals. I’m joining Members of our New York Congressional delegation in advocating for increased support for our New York hospitals, who have been working tirelessly to combat this outbreak. I will continue to advocate for our hospitals to receive critical funding for increased staffing, expanded capacity, and more essential resources including ventilators and PPE. Read more here

Requesting Funding for Community Health Centers

This week, I sent a bipartisan letter to House Leadership requesting more support for Community Health Centers (CHC’s) in the phase 4 COVID-19 legislative relief package. Specifically, the letter outlines the need for funds in order to continue to serve medically underserved communities in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic, and requests $7.6 billion in emergency supplemental funding to support them. This funding is requested for use in detection, prevention, and diagnosis of COVID-19, stabilization of essential health services, and addressing revenue losses to help CHC’s stay open. Our North Country Community Health Centers are the front lines of the COVID-19 outbreak in some of our most vulnerable communities. It is essential that we provide our health care workers and their facilities with equipment and supplies to continue to work safely, but also with funding to keep their doors open to their surrounding communities. Patients in the North Country will continue to rely on Community Health Centers for help in fighting this pandemic, and it is crucial that further funding for them is included in phase four of Congress’ response to the COVID-19 pandemic. Read more here.

Requesting Relief for Dairy Farmers

I have led a bipartisan letter, along with Congressman Anthony Brindisi, to USDA requesting immediate assistance for upstate New York dairy farmers, many of whom have lost direct markets due to the COVID-19 outbreak. The letter, signed by members of the New York Congressional delegation, requests swift action by USDA, including direct payments and reimbursements for dumped milk, in order to provide relief to dairy farmers. It also requests that USDA purchase dairy products to be distributed to local food banks and provided to communities in need, and also allow grocery stores and other venues to donate milk locally. Our dairy farmers are facing an unprecedented crisis that comes after years of low milk prices. I have had conversations with many producers in my district and understand their urgent need for relief. I am proud to be co-leading this effort to urge USDA to immediately provide financial relief to our farmers and make purchases to give our communities better access to dairy products. The dairy industry is very important to upstate New York and it is crucial that we continue to support them, an essential industry, who is working tirelessly to keep our grocery stores stocked during this unprecedented time. Read more here

Introducing Bipartisan COVID-19 Graduate Relief Act 

Last week, I introduced the COVID-19 Graduate Relief Act along with Rep. Josh Harder (D-CA) and Rep. Brian Fitzpatrick (R-PA). This bipartisan legislation provides necessary loan relief to students graduating from college during the COVID-19 pandemic by allowing 2020 graduates to defer their student loans for up to three years. The Secretary of Education can extend this relief to 2021 and 2022 graduates if deemed necessary. Senator Mitt Romney (R-UT) introduced the COVID-19 Graduate Relief Act in the Senate. This bipartisan legislation is a critical addition to the already passed CARES Act, which provides much-needed student loan relief to students during the COVID-19 pandemic. Graduating college students have already suffered severe disruption in their education, and the current state of our economy may have an impact on their ability to find a job following graduation. Allowing graduating students to defer their loans for up to 3 years not only will give students monetary relief, but also will significantly improve their mental health and stress levels. The COVID-19 crisis has a profound impact on each one of us, and its important to ensure our young people attempting to enter the workforce are not forgotten. Read more here.

In Case You Missed It - Media Round-up

I have done various interviews and conference calls with local media over the past few weeks on coronavirus, its impact on seniors and small businesses, local prisons and corrections officers, local hospitals, the CARES Act, and steps that members of the community should be taking to protect themselves. As always, I will continue to do interviews with the local media to ensure the public is fully informed on the most up-to-date information on COVID-19.

North Country Public Radio: Stefanik leads opposition to Cuomo's plan to redistribute NY ventilators

Press Republican: Stefanik Issues Statement

Post Star: NOTEBOOK: Stefanik calls for farmers to be eligible for stimulus

Spectrum News: Stefanik: More COVID-19 Tests Needed In North Country

Adirondack Daily Enterprise: Stefanik supports voluntary redeployment of ventilators

Press Republican: Stefanik supports voluntary redeployment of ventilators | Coronavirus

Watertown Daily Times: Stefanik, health advocates say Cuomo order on hospital supply redistribution not necessary

Press Republican: Officials take questions on unemployment, SBA

Press Republican: Officials condemn raise deferments

Watertown Daily Times: State, federal officials answer virus-related questions for Lewis County residents

Sun Community News: Stefanik Statement; NYS Decision to Defer Negotiated Raises for Corrections Officers

Spectrum News: Stefanik: More Transparency Needed For Nursing Home COVID-19 Cases

Adirondack Daily Enterprise: Stefanik’s bill would let 2020 college grads defer student loans

WRGB Albany: Bill seeks to give student loan relief to graduating college students during COVID-19

Post Star: Stefanik seeks extension of Paycheck Protection Program, more funding for hospitals

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