COVID-19 PLAN

Now is not the time to point fingers; it’s about putting West Virginia first. It’s time for new leadership that will rebuild West Virginia after the coronavirus subsides. 

 

As governor, I will always listen to the medical experts and our frontline workers and not special interest groups. 

 

Here is my plan:

 

Increase Testing in WV

--We need to significantly ramp up testing to keep people safe and responsibly reopen our state and keep it open. 

--Increase the capacity to do all our own testing and contracting with West Virginia companies.

--Keep the state lab open 24/7 to speed up results. 

--Increase testing in every county across the state. 

--Increased testing and communication in the minority communities that are being disproportionately affected by the virus.

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PPE Production 

--Implement a PPE manufacturing tax break to attract jobs and make PPE products in WV. 

--Build a state stockpile of PPE so we aren’t caught flat-footed again. 

--Make sure West Virginia’s frontline workers have access to PPE. 

 

Spend Every Penny of Federal Relief In West Virginia

-- WV received $1.25 billion in federal relief funding. WV companies and workers are given priority for relief funds. 

-- Build the capacity so that every test is processed in state. 

-- Develop a plan with legislators, county commissioners, and mayors to use relief funds wisely. 

 

Support Workers

--Upgrade the system at Workforce WV to speed up the processing of unemployment claims. 

--Reform workplace safety standards to combat COVID-19.

--Set up a system at Workforce WV to return calls. 

--90-Day grace period for utilities and mortgage payments. 

--Expedited processing of federal relief money.

--12 weeks of paid family leave. 

--Free childcare for first responders and frontline workers. 

 

Support Small Businesses

--Establish a small business emergency fund. Help the business left behind by Washington to stay afloat with bridge loans. 

--Implement a micro-loan program (similar to the UKAN program) to help existing businesses re-open their doors. 

--Put in place incentives for any new telework job moving to West Virginia. 

--Provide business coaches, free of charge, to any West Virginia businesses that need help navigating available resources. 

 

Access to Healthcare

--Protect rural hospitals from closing. See our rural hospital rescue plan here. 

--Increase telemedicine options for all West Virginians. 

--Build small format hospitals in rural areas with 25 beds. 

--Testing of daycare workers, front line employees and nursing home residents.

 

Transparency

-- All federal and state relief money administered will be displayed in real time on a public website. 

--Listen to the medical professionals. 

--Establish emergency relief fund for future emergencies. 

--Maintain the COVID-19 response task force with regular updates. 

 

First Responders

--Give Hero Pay to all first responders. Including, firefighters, police, EMTS, 911 dispatchers, sheriff’s deputies, sanitation workers, janitors, and everyone on the front lines. 

--Hero Grant funding for volunteer fire departments to spend on supplies fighting the pandemic. 

--Establish a death benefit for the family of any frontline worker lost due to COVID-19. 

--Recruit first responders across West Virginia. 

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