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Rep. Fishbein's Connecticut Coronavirus Update - 3/22/2020

Update: March 22 9:30 p.m. – State Response to Coronavirus

Friends and Neighbors,

Governor Lamont this evening announced he issued another Executive Order – Executive Order 7J – in response to the continued Coronavirus threat.

The order includes:

·      Extension of time period for fire service personnel examinations: The order modifies state statutes to allow for the extension of time by which the examination components for fire service personnel must be given. This ensures career and volunteer fire service personnel in the queue for certification testing are not negatively impacted and have an extended time period to meet the contractual, bylaw, and probationary requirements of their employer.

·      Delivery of methadone to homebound patients by methadone maintenance clinics: The order modifies state statutes to permit the delivery of take-home doses of methadone for the treatment of drug dependent patients who are determined to be unable to travel to the treatment facility due to COVID-19 or related concerns.

·      Suspension of rehiring procedures and restrictions on temporary worker retirees: In order to enable agencies to meet critical staffing needs caused by COVID-19 with skilled and experienced employees who require little to no additional training, the order suspends several previously enacted executive orders and state statutes, removes the two-year limitation TWRs and authorizes rehiring employees who participated in retirement incentive programs.

·      Suspension of certain real property and state contracting statutes: The order suspends certain state contractor disclosure requirements to facilitate getting space for emergency needs; suspends state approval requirements to enter into emergency short-term leases; and suspends certain state procurement and contracting requirements to make space suitable for emergency needs

Also, late Sunday night The Department of Economic and Community Development (DECD) released guidance for businesses on how to implement the executive order Governor Lamont issued Friday directing all non-essential business functions in Connecticut to suspend in-person operations beginning Monday, March 23, at 8:00 p.m.

Please note the guidance says: “If the function of your business is not listed above, but you believe that it is essential or it is an entity providing essential services or functions, you may request designation as an Essential Business.

Requests by businesses to be designated an essential function as described above, should ONLY be made if they are NOT covered by the guidance.”

The following guidance list is from DECD:

For purposes of Executive Order 7H, “essential business,” means:

  1. Essential workers in the 16 Critical Infrastructure Sectors, as defined by the federal Department of Homeland Security unless otherwise addressed in a prior or future executive order pertaining to the existing declared public health and civil preparedness emergency.
  2. Healthcare and related operations including
  • biotechnology therapies
  • consumer health products and services
  • doctor and dentist offices
  • elder care, including adult day care
  • health care plans and health care data
  • home health care workers or aides
  • hospitals
  • manufacturing, distributing, warehousing, and supplying of pharmaceuticals, including
  • research and development
  • medical marijuana dispensaries and producers
  • medical supplies and equipment providers, including devices, diagnostics, services, and
  • any other healthcare related supplies or services
  • medical wholesale and distribution
  • nursing homes, or residential health care facilities or congregate care facilities
  • pharmacies
  • physical therapy and chiropractic offices
  • research and laboratory services, including testing and treatment of COVID-19
  • veterinary and animal health services
  • walk-in-care health facilities

3. Infrastructure including

  • airports/airlines
  • commercial trucking
  • dam maintenance and support
  • education-related functions at the primary, secondary, or higher education level to
  • provide support for students, including distribution of meals or faculty conducting e-
  • learning
  • hotels and other places of accommodation
  • water and wastewater operations, systems, and businesses
  • telecommunications and data centers
  • transportation infrastructure including bus, rail, for-hire vehicles and vehicle rentals,
  • and garages
  • utilities including power generation, fuel supply, and transmission

4. All manufacturing and corresponding supply chains, including aerospace, agriculture, and related support businesses

5. Retail including

  • appliances, electronics, computers, and telecom equipment
  • big-box stores or wholesale clubs, provided they also sell groceries, consumer health products, or operate a pharmacy
  • convenience stores
  • gas stations
  • grocery stores including all food and beverage retailers
  • guns and ammunition
  • hardware, paint, and building material stores, including home appliance sales/repair
  • liquor/package stores and manufacturer permittees
  • pharmacies
  • pet and pet supply stores

6. Food and agriculture, including

  • farms and farmer’s markets
  • food manufacturing, processing, storage, and distribution facilities
  • nurseries, garden centers, and agriculture supply stores
  • restaurants/bars (provided compliance with all applicable executive orders is
  • maintained)

7. Services including

  • accounting and payroll services
  • animal shelters or animal care or management, including boarding, grooming, pet walking and pet sitting
  • auto supply, repair, towing, and service, including roadside assistance
  • bicycle repair and service
  • building cleaning and maintenance
  • child care services
  • critical operations support for financial institutions
  • financial advisors
  • financial institutions, including banks, credit unions, and check cashing services
  • funeral homes, crematoriums, and cemeteries
  • insurance companies
  • laundromats/dry cleaning
  • legal and accounting services
  • mail and shipping services
  • marinas and marine repair and service
  • news and media
  • real estate transactions and related services, including residential leasing and renting
  • religious services (subject to Executive Order 7D limiting gatherings to 50 people)
  • storage for Essential Businesses
  • trash and recycling collection, hauling, and processing
  • warehouse/distribution, shipping, and fulfillment

8. Providers of basic necessities to economically disadvantaged populations including

  • food banks
  • homeless shelters and congregate care facilities
  • human services providers whose function includes the direct care of patients in state- licensed or funded voluntary programs; the care, protection, custody and oversight of individuals both in the community and in state-licensed residential facilities; those operating community shelters and other critical human services agencies providing direct care or support social service agencies

9. Construction including

  • all skilled trades such as electricians, HVAC, and plumbers
  • general construction, both commercial and residential
  • other related construction firms and professionals for essential infrastructure or for emergency repair and safety purposes
  • planning, engineering, design, bridge inspection, and other construction support activities

10. Services necessary to maintain the safety, sanitation and essential operations of all residences and other buildings (including services necessary to secure and maintain non- essential workplaces)

  • building cleaners or janitors
  • building code enforcement
  • disinfection
  • doormen
  • emergency management and response
  • fire prevention and response
  • general maintenance whether employed by the entity directly or a vendor
  • home-related services, including real estate transactions, closings, appraisals, and moving services
  • landscaping services
  • law enforcement
  • outdoor maintenance, including pool service
  • pest control services
  • security and maintenance, including steps reasonably necessary to secure and maintain non-essential businesses
  • state marshals

11. Vendors that provide essential services or products, including logistics and technology support, child care, and services needed to ensure the continuing operation of government agencies and provide for the health, safety and welfare of the public including

  • billboard leasing and maintenance
  • child care services
  • essential government services
  • government owned or leased buildings
  • information technology and information security
  • logistics
  • technology support

12. Defense

· defense and national security-related business and operations supporting the U.S. Government or a contractor to the US government.

If the function of your business is not listed above, but you believe that it is essential or it is an entity providing essential services or functions, you may request designation as an Essential Business.

Requests by businesses to be designated an essential function as described above, should ONLY be made if they are NOT covered by the guidance.

The list is also available here: https://portal.ct.gov/coronavirus

The governor’s full release is available here.

*****

Also, earlier on Sunday, Governor Lamont used the state’s CTAlert system – www.ctalert.gov – to call state residents to tell them to stay home and stay safe.

Transcript of Governor Lamont’s phone call:

This is Governor Ned Lamont. I’m calling to urge you personally: Stay safe, stay home. I’m not ordering you to stay home, I’m strongly urging you to stay home to make sure that you and your neighbors are much less likely to be infected by the highly contagious COVID-19 virus.

If you must head out to the grocery store, or pharmacy, pick up takeout from your favorite restaurant, that’s fine. I’ll be taking a long walk with Annie to get some fresh air, but remember to keep your distance from passers by.

Seventy years or older? Stay home.

And for those of you who can work from home, that’s best but check with your boss, first.

For the latest updates, follow me on Twitter or Facebook.

We will get through this crisis by working together.

*****

The governor also updated the virus total on: https://portal.ct.gov/Coronavirus

As of 6:00 p.m. tonight – Sunday, March 22nd – the state has diagnosed a total of 327 cases of Coronavirus.

Sadly, three more state residents have passed due to this illness. Governor Lamont announced the passing of a man in his 80s who was a resident of a nursing home in Stafford Springs and recently hospitalized at Johnson Memorial Hospital (not to be confused with another man in his 80s who was also a resident of a nursing home in Stafford Springs and being treated at the same hospital, whose passing was reported yesterday); a woman in her 80s who was a resident of a private home in Rocky Hill and recently hospitalized at Hartford Hospital; and a woman in her 80s who was a resident of a private home in New Canaan and recently hospitalized at Norwalk Hospital.

Latest COVID-19 Testing Data in Connecticut

Updated 6:00 p.m. on Sunday, March 22, 2020

Total patients who tested positive: 327

Fairfield County: 208

Hartford County: 54

Litchfield County: 12

Middlesex County: 6

New Haven County: 29

New London County: 3

Tolland County: 14

Windham County: 1


Fishbein for Connecticut - Jo-Anne L. Rusczek, Treasurer - Approved by Craig Fishbein
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