Congressman Walden COVID-19 update 4/21

The latest on the coronavirus: The situation is rapidly changing, but I wanted to share the latest information and news on the outbreak and relief efforts.

Update for Veterans on How to Get Economic Impact Payment

Most Americans have begun seeing their payment of $1,200 per individual, $2,400 per couple, and $500 per child arrive directly to their bank account via direct deposit thanks to the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act. 

The IRS announced a change for veterans who receive disability compensation, a pension, or survivor benefits from the Department of Veterans Affairs  – these  veterans DO NOT need to do anything to receive their payment.

Those on Social Security who do not file taxes also DO NOT need to file anything to receive this new payment.

Low income individuals with a gross income between $12,200 for individuals and $24,400 for married couples that do not file taxes, WILL need to submit information to the IRS to receive this payment. You can provide this information through the IRS’s website here.

For additional information about the economic impact payment you can visit the IRS website here.
 

Assistance for Farmers: 

The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) announced the Coronavirus Food Assistance Program (CFAP), an immediate relief program that provides $19 billion in support to farmers and ranchers, maintains the integrity of our food supply chain, and ensures access to food for those in need.  This includes $16 billion in direct support to farmers and ranchers based on actual losses for agricultural producers.  Read more here.

Walden Selected to White House Task Force

Last week, President Trump selected Greg Walden to join the White House Economic Task Force. The bipartisan, bicameral task force will advise the White House on reopening the economy. Read more here.

Funds Run Dry for PPP and EIDL:

Last week, the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) and
Economic Injury Disaster Loan (EIDL) Program are out of money. The week before, President Trump called on Congress to prevent these funds from running dry, but Speaker Pelosi and Senator Schumer stopped that effort in its tracks. Read more here.

Nationwide, the PPP approved forgivable loans to more than 1.6 million small businesses and processed nearly $350 billion in only 14 days.

In Oregon, the PPP approved over 18,700 forgivable loans and processed over $3.8 billion in only 14 days.

FEMA Project Airbridge:

FEMA has launched Project Airbridge to help efficiently maintain the country’s existing medical supply chain infrastructure. The goal is to reduce the amount of time it takes for U.S. medical supply distributors to get commercially sourced and procured Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) and other critical supplies into the country for their customers. FEMA is covering the cost to fly the supplies into the U.S. from overseas factories, which will cut the amount of time it takes to ship supplies from weeks to days.

As of April 18, Project Airbridge has completed 64 flights with an additional 50 scheduled for a total of approximately 114 flights. 

NIH Begins New Study:

NIH has begun recruiting for a new study to quantify undetected cases of COVID-19. In this “serosurvey,” researchers will collect and analyze blood samples from as many as 10,000 volunteers to provide critical data for epidemiological models, helping to illuminate the extent to which the virus has spread undetected in the United States.  People interested in joining this study should contact clinicalstudiesunit@nih.gov.  

Clinical trial information is here. 

Watch out for COVID-19 Scams:

Both the Federal Trade Commission and the Federal Communications Commission are reporting a spike in coronavirus related scams including home testing kits, fake cures, and other malicious attempts to prey on COVID-19 fears. The Treasury Department will NOT ask you to pay anything for the payment most Americans will receive as a result of the CARES Act and will not contact you for your bank account information. If you are contacted by someone claiming to be from the government asking for this type of information, please report it to www.ftc.gov/complaint. You can learn more about how to protect yourself from these types of scams here.