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Last night we held a large tele-townhall with over 6,000 residents across the 8th district with Lieutenant Governor Garlin Gilchrist, and Elizabeth Hertel, from the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services, to discuss the latest updates on the coronavirus and to take your questions. We will be holding regular tele-townhalls in the coming weeks, so stay tuned.

With a growing number of coronavirus (COVID-19) cases in Michigan, I want to make sure that you are aware of the resources that are available to Michigan businesses, families, and workers as we continue to respond to this crisis. My goal is to ensure that you are able to benefit from the community resources available to you and your family during this difficult time.

Included below is information related to local health departments, unemployment assistance, information for seniors, small business assistance, tax filing deadline extensions and consumer protections. You can also find this information (and more) on my website. Please feel free to call my office (517-993-0510) Monday through Friday from 9AM – 5PM with any questions. We are teleworking, but definitely working!

Health Concerns

If you have health questions about the coronavirus call the Michigan COVID-19 hotline at 1-888-535-6136.

If you are concerned that you may have contracted COVID-19 you should first call your healthcare provider. It is recommended that you start with a call, not an in-person visit. If you do not have a healthcare provider, call your local urgent care center or, if you live in Oakland county, the county health department, which maintains a nurse on call from 8 am to 8 pm. They can be reached at 800-848-5533.

Unemployment Assistance

If you lose your job during the coronavirus outbreak, you can apply for unemployment assistance here. You can find a full, step-by-step guide to doing so here. The Governor has implemented a number of changes to Michigan’s Unemployment Insurance rules to ensure that they are better able to benefit Michigan workers and families during the coronavirus outbreak. Most importantly, she extended unemployment benefits from 20 weeks to 26 weeks. If you believe you may be eligible for unemployment assistance, I encourage you to learn more about the program.

Assistance for Seniors

A number of resources are dedicated to serving seniors in our district. If you live in Livingston or Oakland County, you can contact the Area Agency on Aging at 800-856-7795 or by visiting them online here. If you are a senior living in Ingham County, you can contact the Tri-County Office on Aging at 517-887-11440 or by visiting them online here. Both agencies can connect seniors with Meals on Wheels, among other services.

Small Business Assistance 

Yesterday, Governor Whitmer formally requested the U.S. Small Business Administration to issue an Economic Injury Disaster declaration for Michigan. When approved, an SBA Economic Injury Disaster declaration will make disaster loans of up to $2 million available to small businesses to help overcome the temporary loss of revenue they are experiencing.

In the interim, small businesses that could benefit from SBA loans are encouraged to start collecting the information they’ll need to complete and submit their application. Examples of information needed can be found here. For additional information or to obtain help preparing the loan application in advance of the declaration, please contact the Michigan SBA offices in Detroit or Grand Rapids.

Separately, the Michigan Economic Development Corporation’s (MEDC) call center stands ready to support businesses looking for assistance through other available state programs. For more information, visit MEDC’s website or call 888-522-0103. The Michigan Small Business Development Center can also provide resources for small businesses impacted by COVID-19. For additional information, please visit their website here.

I am holding a Virtual Business Summit with small businesses that have been impacted by the coronavirus on Friday, March 20 at 1:00PM. As Congress develops legislation that will address the economic impact of this crisis, we want to hear directly from you. To register click here

Tax Filing Deadline

Yesterday, U.S.Treasury Secretary Mnuchin announced that the U.S. government will postpone the April 15  federal tax-payment deadline for millions of individuals, giving Americans an additional 90 days to pay their 2019 federal income-tax bills. The delay is available to people who owe $1 million or less and corporations that owe $10 million or less. While details are still yet to come, please check the Internal Revenue Service’s (IRS) coronavirus page for updates here.

Consumer Protection 

The Governor issued an executive order on March 15 to protect consumers against price gouging during the crisis. You can report potential price-gouging to the Michigan Attorney General online or by calling 877-765-8388.

If you want to learn more about my work in the U.S. House of Representatives, please visit my website, where you can sign up for my e-newsletter. You can find regular updates on my social media pages by “following” me on FacebookTwitter, or Instagram, which you can do by clicking on the icons below. If you have further questions, please feel free to reach out to my office at (517) 993-0510 for more information. My staff and I will continue to work with officials at every level of government to ensure that everyone in Michigan is protected and well informed.

Elissa Slotkin
Member of Congress

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