Representative Dooley August 24th COVID-19 Update

August 24, 2020

Under the heading - not a solution but better than a sharp stick in the eye: Massachusetts’ application to receive grant funding to pay an additional weekly unemployment benefit to claimants under the federal “Lost Wages Supplemental Payment Assistance” program has been approved. This will fund an additional $300 weekly payment to those who are eligible for the three weeks ending 8/1, 8/8, and 8/15. The goal is to have this finalized by Sept. 15. (I guess the feds need a bunch of hoops for us to jump through to release this money - so stupid). If you are eligible - you do not need to do anything and it will automatically be added to their weekly benefit payment retroactively.

 

While this is a bit of a bandaid - it really doesn’t help the overall problem we our facing with our economy. With the nation’s highest unemployment- and more businesses struggling to survive, much more needs to be done to keep Massachusetts from slipping into a recession. A major financial downturn will have a generational

Impact that we won’t be able to quantify for years. Let’s hope part 2 of phase 3 starts soon and the move to normal continues down the path we were on before the brakes were applied a few weeks ago.

 

There were 27 deaths reported and 571 new positives added to the covid dashboard today but that is actually incorrect due to combined reporting because of a system upgrade over the weekend so these numbers include Friday night into today. I don’t know why they can’t just give us an accurate breakdown of the three days as opposed to an asterisk highlighting that the numbers are wrong. These are the things that I see our government doing and I just stare dumbfounded at the computer screen that this is their solution. SMH!

 

Interestingly the CDC dropped its 2 week quarantine guideline for folks traveling and now basically said use your own judgement based on where you went and activities. Still be extra cautious for the two weeks after returning home - but not an absolute.

 

Remember - this is just the CDC - not Governor Baker who still requires 2 weeks quarantine, a negative test, or you get a $500 fine. Was chatting with a friend who was returning from out of state today and wanted to do everything right but after being in the phone for 2 hours , she called me to express her frustration. Since she didn't have symptoms she could only get a test if she forked over $175. And even then she couldn’t find a place that had an appointment available for several days. We should be better than this. If we are going to get on top of this and require our citizens to get the test or suffer severe fines - we need to expand our testing significantly. Didn't the administration announce a couple of months ago all these new testing abilities they were rolling out and we could test like 100,000 per day or something? I’ll have to dig through my notes - but we can do better, we must do better - or people won’t even bother trying and the entire order will be seen as utter nonsense.

 

Which considering when CiCi and I went furniture shopping in Attleboro yesterday - we actually counted license plates and 65% of the cars in these furniture store parking lots were from Rhode Island- I think the ocean staters have already decided to ignore our Governor’s orders. And I’m not complaining or upset about them ignoring this rule - I’m personally glad they are spending their money here at our businesses - This is just general commentary on the effectiveness of this mandate.

 

Well- the power just went out so I guess that means I’ll be going to bed early and this will be a short post because I didn’t bother to charge my laptop. Ugh.

 

I hope everyone stays safe and that the power comes back on soon! A neighbor said they got a robo-call that Eversource was doing overnight tree work - that seems really bizarre - but 2020 so why not kill power to do midnight limb clearing. Amiright?

 

Stay safe and be well!

 

Shawn

 

 

 

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