| FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
April 3, 2020
Senate Review by Senator J.J. Dossett
To say that the COVID-19 situation has changed daily is a vast understatement. At times it seems the information about the disease and responses from local, state and federal officials is changing almost hourly.
The passage of the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act (CARES) provides an estimated $2 trillion stimulus package that will help individuals, families, businesses and state and local governments.
The package includes direct payments to lower and middle-income Americans. In the amount of $1,200 for individuals and $2,400 for married couples, with an additional $500 per child younger than age 17. Checks are expected to be mailed out later this month.
The package also expands unemployment insurance from three to four months, and provides temporary unemployment compensation of $600 per week, which is in addition to and the same time as regular state and federal unemployment benefits. Part-time, self-employed and gig economy workers now have access to unemployment benefits. Because so many Oklahomans have been impacted by the pandemic, the Oklahoma Employment Security Commission has been inundated with tens of thousands of phone calls and online applications. Please be patient as they work to better respond to these applications and get them processed. For more information or to file for unemployment, go to https://www.ok.gov/oesc/.
Theres also a $500 billion lending fund for businesses, cities and states. For more information about help for businesses, please go to okcommerce.gov/covid19/.
As Oklahomas schools have moved to distance learning for the remainder of the semester, some additional announcements were made this past week of great importance. The governor signed an executive order ensuring support staff of Oklahoma public schools can be paid for the remainder of their current contract despite school buildings being closed because of the COVID-19 pandemic. In addition, the United States Department of Agriculture approved Oklahomas waiver to enabling Oklahoma students statewide to access two free meals a day.
The governors call to loosen restrictions that kept many Oklahomans from being tested is welcome news, as well as his expansion of Safer at Home orders, the temporary closures of nonessential businesses, and other provisions which now will remain in place through April 30th and now apply to all 77 counties. However, I believe we still need a statewide shelter in place order to further curtail the spread of COVID-19. Oklahoma has been identified as one of the emerging hot-spots in the countryclearly, we need to be doing more than we are. Lives literally hang in the balance.
On Thursday the governor declared a health emergency which will give him broader powers to respond to the pandemic. The Legislature was called into special session on Monday, April 6 to vote on this action.
Ill keep you posted.
I welcome your comments on state government and the issues before us. Please feel free to contact me by writing to Senator J.J. Dossett at the State Capitol, Room 521-A, Oklahoma City, OK, 73105; call me at (405) 521-5566.
Dear Chamber Members,
Small businesses and sole proprietorships will be able to apply for the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) starting today, a provision of the CARES Act that provides small businesses with funds to pay up to 8 weeks of payroll costs including benefits. Funds can also be used to pay interest on mortgages, rent, and utilities. The funds are provided in the form of loans that will be fully forgiven when used for payroll costs, interest on mortgages, rent, and utilities, and small businesses looking to receive them can apply through any federally insured depository institution, federally insured credit union, and Farm Credit System institution that is participating.
I have reached out to several of our local banks to see who is participating in the PPP. Please note that the information is still being released, and updated. It is advised to have as much supporting documentation as possible when applying. Each bank may require different information, the standard looks to be 941 Forms, 2019 taxes, payroll/health premiums/retirement payments for 2019, and EIN. While you may apply at a bank other than your own business banking institute, the paperwork required may be less if you apply with your business bank.
American Bank of
Oklahoma-Will be participating, they are still working on details
RCB Bank-Application is online, click HERE
Vast Bank-Application is online, click HERE
TTCU-Will be participating, they are still working on details, click HERE for contact details
Oklahoma Central Credit Union-participating and working on detail, click HERE for contact details.
If you have questions about applying for the Economic Injury Disaster Loan Emergency Advance (EIDL), which is the $10,000 bridge loan, please click HERE.
If you have any questions, please feel free to reach out at 918-371-4703.
3/19/2020 First Tulsa County COVID-19 Death -- ORU Ground Maint. worker