California Gov. Gavin Newsom on Thursday night ordered the entire state to stay home to help thwart the new coronavirus. That means Californians may still leave their homes to obtain essential goods and services.

Grocery stores, pharmacies, farmers markets, food banks, gas stations, banks and laundromats are among the “essential services” that may continue operating under the order.

“This is not a permanent state, this is a moment in time,” Newsom said. “We will meet this moment together and we will look back at these kinds of decisions as pivotal decisions.”

Read more on Patch

In another major development, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell proposed direct payments of $1,200 per person and $2,400 for couples as part of an initial Republican response Thursday to the new coronavirus outbreak.

The GOP leader unveiled his plan as Congress raced to craft a $1 trillion rescue package to shore up households, healthcare and the U.S. economy amid the pandemic crisis and nationwide shutdown that’s hurtling the country toward a likely recession.

Under the GOP leader’s plan, the aid would be phased out at income thresholds of $75,000 for individuals and $150,000 per couple. Additionally, there would be $500 payments for each child.
McConnell’s proposal aligns with the Trump administration’s push to swiftly send a first round of checks to American households for immediate needs.

Don’t miss local and statewide news about coronavirus developments and precautions. Sign up for Patch alerts and daily newsletters.

Additionally, the McConnell plan would provide $300 billion in loans to small businesses, including loans that would eventually be forgiven for employers who use them to meet payroll expenses.

Democrats have their own proposals for ushering aid to Americans, and even McConnell’s GOP senators panned Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin’s idea of direct checks of $3,000 for a family of four — preferring instead to use the federal dollars to keep workers who are asked to stay home on the business payrolls.

Thursday’s work on the measure comes as the number of Americans filing new claims for unemployment benefits surged last week by 70,000, indicating that the impact of the new coronavirus was beginning to be felt in rising job layoffs, the Labor Department reported Thursday.

Applications for benefits, a good indicator of layoffs, rose to a seasonally adjusted 281,000 last week, the Labor Department said. Both the one-week rise and the total number of applications were far above the levels seen over the past year as the nation’s unemployment rate fell to a half-century low of 3.5 percent.

The effects of coronavirus-related closures and layoffs are affecting workers in communities across the county. In Illinois, an order by Gov. J.B. Pritzker forced more than 25,000 restaurants and bars statewide that employ about 474,500 people to shut down in-house service for two weeks in an attempt to stem the spread of the virus.

“This is a f—— disaster,” chef Kevin Hickey, owner of Duck Inn in Chicago, told Patch’s Mark Konkol. “We’re on Day 1 looking down the barrel at little to no income, scrambling to try to set up food delivery and pickup — which wasn’t a substantial part of our business, and even if it increased tenfold wouldn’t be enough to survive. … And we’re trying to do best by our employees.”

Also on Thursday, President Donald Trump called on the U.S. Food and Drug Administration to fast-track potential treatment and therapies for the new coronavirus. Trump pointed to efforts on Gilead Sciences Inc.’s experimental antiviral drug Remdesivir and the generic antimalarial drug hydroxychloroquine, and called on the FDA to streamline its regulatory approval process, Reuters reported.

READ MORE: $1 Trillion Economic Plan Taking Shape; GOP Weighs In

Coronavirus Pains America’s Workers: Jobless Claims Surge By 70K

How Are Illinois Restaurant Workers Doing? ‘Absolutely Terrible’

As of Thursday afternoon, there were 13,159 confirmed cases of coronavirus and 176 deaths in the United States, according to Johns Hopkins University.

Numbers: Latest U.S. Confirmed Cases And Deaths

Family Of 4 Could Get $3K Under One Virus Relief Plan

The first federal checks to families could be $3,000 for a family of four under the White House proposal to unleash $1 trillion to shore up households and the U.S. economy amid the coronavirus outbreak.

Senate Passes Virus Aid Bill

Americans can expect federal aid soon after the Senate passed an aid package that provides sick leave benefits to workers, free testing and other measures to those affected by the new coronavirus.

U.S., Canada Border To Temporarily Close

Travel between the United States and Canada will be disrupted in the coming weeks after the border between the two countries was closed to nonessential traffic.

Ford, GM, Fiat Chrysler Close

Detroit’s three automakers have closed all factories amid mounting coronavirus fears, a decision that idles about 150,000 auto workers.

ICE Eases Efforts Amid Outbreak

U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement officials said they plan to halt most enforcement and arrests due the ongoing virus outbreak and will focus mainly on people who pose public safety risks.

U.S. Suffering Nationwide Blood Shortage

The American Red Cross, which supplies almost half of the nation’s donated blood, is urging healthy residents to make appointments and donate blood as the country faces a “severe blood shortage” due to the new coronavirus crisis.

U.S. Struggles To Fill Requests For Protective Gear

The coronavirus pandemic has exposed some of the national stockpile’s shortcomings — it wasn’t designed as a long-term solution to monumental demand.

Recap: White House Thursday Coronavirus Briefing

The briefing came after U.S. Treasury officials outlined the Trump administration’s plan to send relief money to Americans.

Marriott To Furlough Tens Of Thousands

The world’s largest hotel chain is expected to furlough tens of thousands of employees as the coronavirus pummels the hospitality industry.

Stock Exchange To Close Trading Floor

The New York Stock Exchange will close its famed trading floor in lower Manhattan effective Monday after two people who work at the exchange tested positive for coronavirus, The Wall Street Journal reported.

All ‘Non-Life-Sustaining’ Businesses In PA Must Close

The governor’s order, aimed to slow the spread of coronavirus, will be enforced. Violators could face fines and even imprisonment.

LA County Man Dies From Coronavirus

According to a report, the man who died was a 34-year-old, who got sick while visiting Disney World and flew home last week via LAX.

Florida Congressman Tests Positive For Coronavirus

South Florida Rep. Mario Diaz-Balart has become the first member of Congress to test positive for the new coronavirus.

GA Senator Tests Positive For Coronavirus; Lt. Gov. Self-Quarantines

A Georgia senator who was at the Capitol on Monday tested positive for coronavirus; officials including the lieutenant governor are now in self-quarantine.

Beverly Hills Launches Kindness Task Force

Beverly Hills is looking for volunteers to help other residents, including senior citizens and the most vulnerable.

City’s Cry For Help Sees 1K Retirees Step Up

The retired medical professionals volunteered to re-join the ranks as New York City fights the new coronavirus.

New Jersey Mom Keeps Celebrations Alive

As many are forced to cancel parties due to the new coronavirus, a Hillsborough mom is helping others celebrate while social distancing.

12 More Coronavirus Deaths In Washington

King County reported 10 additional deaths linked to COVID-19 with 1,187 illnesses confirmed statewide.

First Maryland Coronavirus Death Reported

Maryland’s first confirmed death from the coronavirus is a Prince George’s County man in his 60s, state officials said.

Miami-Dade Beaches Shut Down

Miami-Dade Mayor Carlos Gimenez has ordered people to stay off the Miami areas’s world famous beaches in response to the coronavirus.

Click Here: Putters

Amazon Warehouse Worker Contracts Coronavirus

An Amazon warehouse worker in Queens tested positive for the new coronavirus Wednesday, according to The Atlantic.

3 DC Firefighters Test Positive

Public safety officials confirmed that three D.C. Fire and EMS personnel had presumptive positive tests for the new coronavirus.


This article will be updated throughout the day; please check back in.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *