Morning Briefing
3/26/2020

National State of Emergency

Gov. Jim Justice issued a “Stay At Home” order Monday, March 23, 2020
directing all West Virginia residents to stay at home and limit movements outside of their homes beyond essential needs. Nonessential Businesses and operations must temporarily cease operations.

According to DHHR as of today

51 Total Positive Cases
1031 Total Negative Cases
0 Total Deaths
19 Tests Pending*
NOTE: All test results, including those processed through hospitals and commercial laboratories, are reportable to DHHR and are included in the positive and negative case counts. *Tests pending only includes those tests processed through the state public health lab.
Counties with positive cases: Berkeley (2), Harrison (3), Jackson (4), Jefferson (3), Kanawha (5), Logan (1), Marion (1), Marshall (2), Mercer (2), Monongalia (18), Ohio (2), Preston (2), Putnam (2), Raleigh (1), Tucker (2), Wood (1)

ADDITIONAL INFORMATION
Gov. Justice continues to encourage all West Virginians to follow the guidelines presented last week by President Donald J. Trump to avoid social gatherings of more than 10 people.

For more information about COVID-19 prevention and more, call the State’s toll-free hotline at 1-800-887-4304 or visit Coronavirus.wv.gov.

Beckley Appalachian regional hospital will be holding a viral respiratory screening clinic Friday, March 27th 10a-2p 250 stanaford road in Beckley – no doctor order required – but you must have a fever of over 100 and or cough/shortness of breath

The Senate late Wednesday passed an unparalleled $2.2 trillion economic rescue package steering aid to businesses, workers and health care systems engulfed by the coronavirus pandemic.
The package would provide:
one-time direct payments to Americans of $1,200 per adult making up to $75,000 a year, and $2,400 to married couples making up to $150,000, with $500 payments per child. After a $75,000 threshold for individuals, the benefit would be reduced by $5 for each $100 the taxpayer makes. A similar $150,000 threshold applies to couples and a $112,500 threshold for heads of households.

READ MORE HERE – SOURCE CNN 

The Governor and education leaders are now hoping to resume in-class instruction for WV Schools on Monday, April 20, 2020.

Gov. Justice also announced that he has asked West Virginia Tax Commissioner Dale Steager to extend the West Virginia income tax filing and payment deadline until Wednesday, July 15, 2020, to correspond with the federal government’s recent tax filing extension the Governor also announced that he will be waiving all interest and penalties on property tax filings until Friday, May 1, 2020.

APPLY for UNEMPLOYMENT  

Governor Jim Justice issued an executive order on Thursday, March 19, directing WorkForce West Virginia and the West Virginia Department of Commerce to provide unemployment benefits to those affected by COVID-19 and administer them to the maximum extent permitted by federal law. This executive order allows us to:

• Waive the one-week waiting period for eligible West Virginians to receive unemployment benefits
• Waive the able and available work requirement
• Waive the work search requirement
• Unemployment benefits will be available to eligible individuals who are requested by a medical professional, local health authority or employer to be isolated or quarantined as a consequence of COVID-19, even if they are not actually diagnosed.

To file for unemployment benefits, go to uc.workforcewv.org.

Those who do not have internet access, have a disability requiring assistive technology or need further assistance should call 1-800-252-JOBS.

Due to an influx in website traffic, in response to the COVID-19 outbreak, our systems are experiencing intermittent disruptions and temporary outages. We apologize for any inconvenience this may cause and are working diligently to resolve the problems. We’re committed to providing excellent service to each person attempting to access our systems or file an unemployment claim. During this difficult time, we ask you to remain patient as we work to resolve these issues.

WVU Tech has announced the postponement of 2020 Commencement exercises in May due to concerns surrounding the global COVID-19 outbreak. Degrees will still be conferred in May upon the completion of major requirements, and diplomas will be mailed out like normal. WVU Tech may host a special ceremony in December for all 2020 graduates or allow 2020 graduates to walk in the regularly scheduled May 2021 event.

West Virginia University has announced its plans for May commencement.
In a letter to students, University President E. Gordon Gee revealed two options for May grads. On Saturday, May 16, the University will hold Mountaineer Graduation Day – an online commencement experience. However, May graduates will also be able to participate in a special December commencement ceremony held at the Coliseum on Dec. 19.

Are you looking for something positive to do while the state is under a “Stay at Home” order during the Coronavirus pandemic? West Virginia Secretary of State Mac Warner suggests citizens use this time to fulfill their civic duty to complete the 2020 U.S. Census. You are asked to complete a Census questionnaire on or before April 1. To respond online, or for more information on the 2020 U.S. Census, visit Census2020.gov.

APPLY for SMALL BUSINESS LOANS

ATLANTA – The U.S. Small Business Administration is offering low-interest federal disaster loans for working capital to West Virginia small businesses suffering substantial economic injury as a result of the Coronavirus (COVID-19), SBA Administrator Jovita Carranza announced today. SBA acted under its
own authority, as provided by the Coronavirus Preparedness and Response Supplemental Appropriations Act that was recently signed by the President, to declare a disaster following a request received from Gov. Jim Justice on March 18, 2020. The disaster declaration makes SBA assistance available in the entire state of West Virginia.
SBA Customer Service Representatives will be available to answer questions about SBA’s Economic
Injury Disaster Loan program and explain the application process.
“Small businesses, private non-profit organizations of any size, small agricultural cooperatives and small aquaculture enterprises that have been financially impacted as a direct result of the Coronavirus (COVID-19) since Jan. 31, 2020, may qualify for Economic Injury Disaster Loans of up to $2 million to
help meet financial obligations and operating expenses which could have been met had the disaster not occurred.
“These loans may be used to pay fixed debts, payroll, accounts payable and other bills that can’t be paid because of the disaster’s impact. Disaster loans can provide vital economic assistance to small businesses to help overcome the temporary loss of revenue they are experiencing.
Applicants may apply online, receive additional disaster assistance information and download applications at https://disasterloan.sba.gov/ela.
Applicants may also call SBA’s Customer
Service Center at (800) 659-2955 or email disastercustomerservice@sba.gov for more information on SBA disaster assistance. Individuals who are deaf or hard-of-hearing may call (800) 877-8339. Completed applications should be mailed to U.S. Small Business Administration, Processing and Disbursement Center, 14925 Kingsport Road, Fort Worth, TX 76155.
The deadline to apply for an Economic Injury Disaster Loan is Dec. 21, 2020.
For more information about Coronavirus, please visit Coronavirus.gov.
For more information about available SBA resources and services, please visit SBA.gov/coronavirus.