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Overview and News

 

As of 2:00PM on April 2, Missouri has had 1,834 confirmed cases of COVID-19; 19 deaths have been attributed to the virus.

Updates from the Governor’s Office from this week:

Filing for August 2020 primaries closed on March 31. Rep. Elaine Gannon filed to join what will be a 3-way Republican primary. Sen. Bill Eigel received another primary opponent, Eric Wulff. In total, 52 House districts will have no Democratic candidates and there are 30 districts with no Republican candidates.

The Kaiser Family Foundation released updated data of those who are most at-risk. They estimate that more than 40% of adult Missourians are at risk for serious illness if they obtain COVID-19.

April 1st was Census Day! As of April 3, Missouri’s self-response rate is 43.2% compared to the national average of 41.3%. Encourage your networks to fill out the census as soon as possible!

 

“Phase 3:” Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act:

Missouri General Assembly

  • What we know:
    • This week was a COVID-19 spring break extension.
    • The legislature is expected to convene next week to pass the FY2020 Supplemental (HB 2014) and a bill to extend the FRA.
      • The Senate Appropriations Committee plans to convene on Tuesday, with a floor vote on the FY2020 supplemental budget on Wednesday.
      • The House plans to convene Wednesday and pass the amended version either Wednesday evening or Thursday.
      • Legislative leaders have put a screening process in place for the public seeking to attend legislative proceedings, but they are urging the public to not attend.
    • What we don’t know:
      • What the FY2021 budget process looks like going forward. It currently is awaiting House Perfection but will need to be adjusted for updated economic growth projections.
      • What, if any, policy solutions may be fast-tracked.

FY 2020 Budget

Due to the COVID-19 impacts on the economy combined with extending the income tax filing deadline to July 15, Gov. Parson anticipates a $500 million shortfall in this fiscal year. Approximately $300 million in federal funding this year may help with the funding shortfall. To address the gap, Gov. Parson announced $180 million in withholds for the FY2020 budget this week, including:

  • $61 million from 4-year higher education institutions
  • $54 million from the facilities maintenance reserve fund transfer
  • $12 million from community colleges

New Updates

  • DSS announced child care providers who see a decline in attendance in subsidy children would see no less than the three-month average of their payments from December 2019 through February 2020.
  • The CDC offered updated guidance for schools and child care programs this week.
  • DHSS’s Section for Child Care Regulation has released a communication on how stay-at-home orders impact licensed child care providers.
  • As a part of Missouri’s Preschool Development Grant B-5, the strategic plan submitted has been approved by the federal agency and is going through final branding edits before public release.
  • Today, CLASP published a fact sheet to help child care owners navigate the small business loans made available from the federal CARES Act. Many of these loans are forgivable if the funds are used to keep staff employed and operations afloat.
  • First Five Years Fund also has this great resource available for child care centers (and other small businesses or non-profits) with information on all of the loan programs available through the federal relief programs.
  • On April 2, CLASP published a fact sheet for state CCDF administrators with an overview of federal flexibility.
  • On March 30, the Administration for Children & Families offered additional clarification on the flexibility they are offering to states and grantees.

Missouri Child Care Licensing

Missouri Child Care Subsidy

Home Visiting

  • DESE has provided this guidance to continue delivering Parents as Teachers services.
  • Parents as Teachers National Center has released a blog on turning to telehealth to provide support to families during the pandemic.
  • HRSA has indicated that during the emergency, MIECHV funded home visiting programs may use telehealth methods of contacting families.

National Updates

Kids Win Missouri Activities:

Kids Win Missouri sent this letter to Governor Parson, urging action on policies relating to child care, health care, SNAP, and WIC. Missouri is not maximizing all the flexibility allowed by federal law.

  • March’s labor report showed that the U.S. lost 701,000 jobs in March. However, the report only accounts for job numbers through the second week of the month. Unemployment benefit numbers released since then indicate that the job losses reported in the future will be much larger.
  • On Thursday, more than 6.6 million people applied for first-time unemployment benefits, doubling the numbers from the prior week. For Missouri, more than 104,000 people filed claims, up from more than 42,000 applications the previous week.

New Updates

  • Parson announced on March 30 that he has approved reciprocity agreements for health care providers, expanded flexibilities for APRNs, and provided an update on the state’s efforts to procure personal protective equipment (PPE).

Missouri Updates

National Updates

New Updates

  • Missouri KidsFirst has launched the #Essential4Kids campaign to spread the word to protect children from abuse during the COVID-19 crisis.
  • Kids Win Missouri inquired about P-EBT (benefit for families who have a child on free and reduced lunch at school) as it relates to additional burdens placed on foster parents during this timeframe. Once approved by the federal agencies, CD will be providing a list of names to Family Support Division so outreach can be made with an application to be eligible for these benefits. We’re continuing to monitor this issue and are in conversation with Family Support Division on outreach to families that qualify for free and reduced lunch.
  • In addition to the PSNAP for kids who exited foster care or kids whose adoption or guardianship agreement ended during this COVID period are eligible for an additional 90 days of Medicaid coverage.  That adjustment is being made by MO HealthNet to avoid any overpayments on the child welfare side.
  • The Department of Social Services created this flyer to help families determine if they are eligible for SNAP, TANF, Medicaid and Child Care benefits and this flyer to help families access benefits.

Missouri Updates:

National Updates

New Updates

  • DESE shared a PowerPoint with school leaders on April 1 as part of a webinar and was followed-up with an email. This includes an update on the CARES Act, information on statutory waivers, food and nutrition updates, childcare for health professionals, school closure, and more
  • On March 27, an administrative memo was released by DESE on calendaring and attendance, and notifying districts of possible future withholding.
  • Missouri’s Dept. of Mental Health has provided family mental health resources here.

Missouri Updates

National Updates