COVID-19 Evening Updates 3/30/20

Dear Friends and Neighbors,

Below are some highlights from the end of last week and the weekend.

To link to the Commonwealth COVID-19 Command Center's daily situation reports (sent at end of day), visit https://www.replizmalia.org/covid-19-response

We are all in this together. Please do your part to continue physical distancing, practicing good hygiene, and taking good care of yourself and your loved ones during these trying times.

Warmly,

Liz Malia

liz.malia@mahouse.gov

617-722-2380

 

Federal Updates

Gov. Baker announced Thursday, March 26 he filed a request for a federal disaster declaration in connection with COVID-19. The Trump administration approved it on Saturday, March 28 creating more flexibility to aid in the virus fight and making certain workers eligible for unemployment benefits.

https://www.mass.gov/info-details/covid-19-federal-disaster-declaration

On Friday, March 27, the federal government enacted the CARES Act, which provides unemployment compensation to individuals not covered under regular MA unemployment law, such as those who are self-employed or paid by 1099s, those who have recently exhausted their weeks of unemployment benefits, and those who do not have sufficient earnings over the last year to qualify for state unemployment. The new law also extends the number of available weeks of benefits for all claimants, and supplements all claimants’ weekly benefit amount by $600.

The MA Department of Unemployment Assistance is awaiting federal guidance regarding the CARES Act’s application requirements, business rules, eligibility requirements, exceptions, and technical requirements. Until that guidance is issued, benefits under the CARES Act are not yet available in MA and claimants may not apply for such benefits through UI Online at this time. Updates about when CARES Act benefits will be available, and about when and how you should apply for those benefits will be posted at mass.gov/unemployment/covid-19 as soon as they are available.

State Updates

On Friday, March 27, the Governor pushed back the state's tax filing deadline, consistent with the federal deadline, to July 15.