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ANNOUNCEMENT: As recommended by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), our in-state offices are taking precautions to help prevent the spread of COVID-19. Our staff members are available by phone or email and are taking in-person meetings by appointment only. Click here for more information and resources.
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coronavirus (covid-19) response efforts

MONITORING THE COVID-19 PANDEMIC

We are closely monitoring the COVID-19 pandemic and remain in regular communication with both state and federal agencies. This page is intended to keep North Dakotans informed on current efforts and resources. We recommend following official guidance from the CDC and other officials. You can also subscribe to regular updates from the The Center of Health Security at Johns Hopkins University here.

LATEST UPDATES

Congress Passes the Coronavirus Response & Relief Supplemental Appropriations Act

Information about the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 Vaccine

Information about the Moderna COVID-19 Vaccine

FAQS

Learn more about COVID-19 and what measures you can take against it.

HOW DO I PROTECT MYSELF

Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds especially after you have been in a public place, or after blowing your nose, coughing, or sneezing.

Avoid close contact with others. Maintain a social distance of 6 feet from others in public places.

Cover your mouth and nose with a mask when around others.

HOW CAN I PROTECT OTHERS?

Stay home if you're sick.

Always cover your mouth and nose with a tissue when you cough or sneeze or use the inside of your elbow and do not spit.

Cover your mouth and nose with a mask when around others.

Clean AND disinfect frequently touched surfaces daily. This includes tables, doorknobs, light switches, countertops, handles, desks, phones, keyboards, toilets, faucets, and sinks.

WHAT ARE THE SYMPTOMS?

Reported illnesses have ranged from mild symptoms to severe illness and death for confirmed coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) cases.

Symptoms may include: fever or chills, cough, shortness of breath or difficulty breathing, fatigue, muscle or body aches, headache, new loss of taste or smell, sore throat, congestion or runny nose, nausea or vomiting, diarrhea.

These symptoms may appear 2-14 days after exposure (based on the incubation period of MERS-CoV viruses).

WHO IS AT RISK?

Older adults and people of any age who have serious underlying medical conditions may be at higher risk for more serious complications from COVID-19. These people who may be at higher risk of getting very sick from this illness.

SEEKING HELP?

Learn about current resources:

SMALL BUSINESS DISASTER ASSISTANCE

The SBA provides low-interest disaster loans to help businesses and homeowners recover from declared disasters.

TRAVEL NOTICES (CDC)

Learn the latest on travelers returning from high risk countries, domestic & foreign travel, and other frequently asked questions.

VETERAN ASSISTANCE (VA)

VA has implemented aggressive public health measures including outreach to Veterans and staff, clinical screening at VA health care facilities, and protective procedures for patients admitted to community living centers and spinal cord injury units.

SOCIAL SECURITY UPDATES (SSA)

The SSA will provide limited, critical services via phone, mail, and online, while we focus our efforts on serving people most in need. Recipients will continue to receive their monthly benefit amount via Direct Deposit.

PERSONAL FINANCIAL PROTECTION (CFPB)

The CFPB is committed to providing consumers with up-to-date information and resources to protect and manage their finances during this difficult time as the situation evolves.

UNEMPLOYMENT (DOL)

Learn more about workplace safety, wages, hours & leave, unemployment insurance flexibilities, support for dislocated workers, and other current services.

FORECLOSURE AND EVICTION SUSPENSION (HUD)

The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) authorized the Federal Housing Administration (FHA) to implement an immediate foreclosure and eviction moratorium for single family homeowners with FHA-insured mortgages.

EMPLOYEE RETENTION CREDIT (USDT)

CARES authorized an Employee Retention Credit (ERC), which encourages businesses to keep employees on payroll. The tax credit is refundable and is 50 percent of up to $10,000 in wages paid by eligible employers impacted by the pandemic.

AVOIDING SCAMS DURING QUARANTINE

If you’re an older adult or a caregiver for one, you may need help picking up groceries, prescriptions, and other necessary supplies. If someone you don’t know offers to help, be wary. Some scammers offer to buy supplies but never return with the goods or your money. It’s usually safer to find a trusted friend or neighbor or arrange a delivery with a well-known company.

TAX RELIEF (IRS)

The IRS has established a special section focused on steps to help taxpayers, businesses and others affected by the coronavirus.

MEDICARE TELEHEALTH COVERAGE (CMS)

The Trump Administration announced expanded Medicare telehealth coverage that will enable beneficiaries to receive a wider range of healthcare services from their doctors without having to travel to a healthcare facility.

FEDERAL STUDENT LOANS (ED)

During the COVID-19 national emergency, federal student loan borrowers can be placed in an administrative forbearance, which allows you to temporarily stop making your monthly loan payment. 

PAYCHECK PROTECT PROGRAM (SBA)

You can apply for the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) at any lending institution that is approved to participate in the program through the existing U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) 7(a) lending program and additional lenders approved by the Department of Treasury. You can call your bank or find SBA-approved lenders in your area through SBA’s online Lender Match tool.

CURRENT EFFORTS

Amid the ongoing coronavirus pandemic, Congress is working on legislation aimed at combating the virus and providing economic relief to American families. We have debated and passed these pieces of legislation in "phases".

Here's a breakdown:

PHASE ONE

$8.3 billion supplemental appropriation passed earlier this month.

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PHASE TWO

$105 billion targeted relief package negotiated by President Trump and House Leaders to help workers and families.

PHASE THREE

On April 21, 2020 the Senate passed $475 billion in emergency funding for the Paycheck Protection Program, COVID-19 testing, and health care providers. Learn more here.

This legislation was signed by President Trump on March 27. It is aimed at getting financial assistance to Americans, bringing relief to small businesses and their employees, stabilizing the economy, and supporting healthcare workers and patients. Here are the key provisions:

Provides money to American families

Gives a one-time tax rebate check of $1,200 to every American whose 2018 tax return, or 2019 if filed, showed income at or below $75,000. That’s $2,400 per married couple, with an extra $500 per child. 

Expands unemployment insurance to self-employed workers and makes more money available for longer 

Additional $260 billion to support workers affected by COVID-19.

Helps small businesses keep employees and stay open

Creates a “Paycheck Protection program” that will provide 8 weeks of cash-flow assistance through 100 percent federally guaranteed loans to small businesses who maintain their payroll. 

Helps families stay in their homes

Prohibits foreclosures on all federally-backed mortgage loans for a 60-day period beginning March 18, 2020. 

Provides relief to people with federal student loans affected by COVID-19

Requires federal student loan payments, principal, and interest be deferred for 6 months through September 30, 2020 without penalty to the student. 

Fully mobilizes America’s health care sector and prioritizes rural health

Significantly expands telehealth so that patients can see doctors with whom they don’t already have a relationship from the safety of their own home, connecting people on home dialysis with providers, and allowing federally qualified health centers to participate. 

Provides loans (not bailouts) to support important national industry

Provides direct lending through the Treasury’s Exchange Stabilization Fund to passenger airlines, cargo airlines, and businesses important to “maintaining national security.”

If you'd like to learn more about what is in this bill, please read here.

PHASE FOUR

On December 22nd 2020, Congress passed a year-end spending bill containing a targeted COVID-19 relief package.

The $900 billion targeted relief package contains new funds available for businesses and workers, direct payments for American families, and aid to ensure the successful development and distribution of a COVID-19 vaccine.

$166 billion for $600 direct checks to Americans making up to $75,000, with an additional $600 per child.

An extension of the Coronavirus Relief Fund to allow states and tribes to spend allotted money until December 31, 2021.

$264 billion for the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP), including streamlined forgiveness, expanded eligibility, and deductibility for PPP expenses.

$120 billion for enhanced unemployment insurance of an additional $300 per week through March 14.

$20 billion to purchase of vaccines, ensuring they will be free of charge for anyone who needs it.

$45 billion for transportation, including $10 billion for highways.

$15 billion in funding for entertainment venues, movie theaters, and museums experiencing significant revenue loss.

$10 billion for grants to childcare centers to help providers safely reopen.

$4 billion for substance abuse. Significant progress made over past several years on opioid addiction has been reversed because of impact of COVID lockdowns.

$82 billion in funding for schools and universities to assist resuming with in-person learning.

$25 billion in temporary and targeted rental assistance. Extends the eviction moratorium until January 31, 2021.

$7 billion in broadband funding, including $300 million to build out rural broadband and $250 million for telehealth.

Senator Cramer's Efforts

Video Resources From Senator Cramer