Summary from Governor’s press conference today, March 20th, 2020 (link in comments):
🔘 96 cases, impacting 2 new counties, Benton and Green.
🔘 3 Long-Term Care Facilities have been impacted (see link in comments for specifics). AR Dept. of Health (ADH) is working to test all staff and residents at those facilities.
🔘 Those infected include:
62 people ages 19-64
26 people ages 65+
📍Governor Hutchinson requested SBA Disaster Declaration for AR and the SBA granted APPROVAL today!
📍While dining-in, bars, gyms, and other indoor venues are closed temporarily, manufacturing and other businesses are to continue on with proper precautions in place (screening and social distancing).
📍There is NO INTENT TO FURTHER RESTRICT OR CLOSE BUSINESSES in Arkansas.
📍 Department of Finance and Administration is authorizing a $30M advance to leverage our collective buying power as a state to purchase PPE. The state is working with Dr. Patterson at UAMS to determine PPE priorities. This procurement will take time but it is in the works.
📍Our National Guard is engaged. They helped work the Call Center at ADH and took the call backlog from 500 down to 10. Thank you!!!
FROM EDUCATION SECRETARY KEY:
📍US Department of Ed is establishing a waiver process for states that cannot test. AR is seeking a waiver to cancel the ACT Aspire test this year. It will be approved.
📍This will impact the K-2 assessment along with the Dynamic Learning Map Assessment. These tests will not be given this year.
FROM ATTORNEY GENERAL RUTLEDGE:
📍Giving $3M (in addition to $4M previously given) from the Consumer Education and Enforcement Fund (this is a settlement fund-no tax dollars) to Arkansas Economic Development Commission’s Quick Action Loan Program. This will assist with getting money to small businesses.
📍Received 185 complaints on price gouging. Many have been fake-people posting jokes about selling items at high prices on social media. Please do not make price gouging jokes on social media. You will be contacted by AG’s office.
📍24 of those complaints are now active investigations.
📍Beware of fake COVID-19 websites asking for your personal information. Please rely on ADH and CDC websites for any information you need.
📍 If someone comes to your door saying they are with CDC, they are trying to scam you. Close your door. Do not give your information to them.
📍Please be patient with any FOI requests.