SACRAMENTO – Governor Gavin Newsom issued the below statement today following the release of an updated version of the HEROES Act amid bipartisan negotiations on federal COVID-19 relief:
“I applaud Speaker Pelosi for her dedicated leadership and tireless work to advance a much-needed federal coronavirus relief package that is responsive to the needs of all Californians and all Americans.
“I urge the White House and Senate to embrace and act on this bill without delay. Now is not the time for ideology to stand in the way of guaranteeing a strong recovery. We need to collectively build back from the public health and economic crises that this pandemic has created. The updated version of the HEROES Act released on Monday by the Speaker and House Democrats would provide much-needed support to California and its residents.
“In particular, the bill’s $436 billion in assistance for state, local, territorial and tribal governments, if provided by October 15, would help California avoid difficult reductions in the 2020-21 fiscal year. Such assistance would allow California to rescind cuts to public education, higher education, teacher training, housing and the state’s judicial system. It could also allow us to preserve jobs and continuity of operations in core government services such as public health, public safety and public education. A pandemic is the worst possible time for us to be pulling back support for these services – to say nothing of our responsibility to provide for our first responders, health care workers and teachers who have been on the front lines of this pandemic for well over six months now.
“Further, I want to express my continued and strong support for many of the economic relief measures in the HEROES Act that directly help businesses, workers, families and individuals. Of particular importance is the funding it provides for Medicaid, nutrition assistance, enhanced unemployment insurance benefits and education stabilization. These measures all double as stimulus that will allow the private sector and the overall economy to grow back stronger.
“I deeply appreciate your dedication to addressing the needs of our residents and the nation in this extremely difficult time.”