State Takes Action on COVID-19, Public Participation in Health Agency Directives Essential to Mitigation Effort

Tuesday, March 17, 2020

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Sacramento (CA) – The California State Legislature and Governor Newsom are taking swift action to slow the spread of COVID-19 including passing a $1.1 billion budget package. The legislation, SB 117 and AB 89, will bolster the state’s response to both medical needs of people with the virus, and help implement drastic mitigation efforts necessary to deal with the pandemic.


“We are doing everything we can to do our part,” said Assemblymember Chris Holden. “For us to make it through these hard times we need bold action at the federal, state, local, and individual level. Yesterday the state stepped up with a real commitment to help the most vulnerable.”


AB 89 allows Governor Newsom to utilize $500 million from the General Fund, and potentially up to $500 million more for purposes related to his declaration of a State of Emergency. SB 117 provides $100 million to California schools to be used for purchasing personal protective equipment or for supplies and labor costs of cleaning school sites.


Governor Newsom’s latest Executive Order includes protections for the health and safety of Californians most vulnerable to COVID-19 residing at health care, residential and non-residential facilities licensed by the state. The order also directs the Health and Human Services Agency to develop alternatives to leverage in home supportive services programs, adult protective services programs, area agencies on aging and regional centers, and other programs to support the home isolation of vulnerable Californians, including seniors and those with serious chronic conditions.


The California Department of Public Health has issued guiding documents for individuals, businesses, healthcare facilitates, and others on their website.


“It is vital that everyone follow the directives of our public health agencies in order to protect our families, friends and neighbors,” said Holden. “When everybody takes the proper action, resources will be available to those who need it, we will slow the virus, and together we will overcome this hardship.”