Taking Action on COVID-19


Taking Action

I've been actively working with state and local leaders to ensure we're able to respond to this health crisis effectively. I have also been pressuring the Administration and Congressional leadership to ensure COVID-19 legislation addresses the needs of our Valley. Here are some examples: 

For the fourth time since the COVID-19 outbreak, Congress has come together on a bipartisan agreement to focus on solutions for this horrific health care crisis facing AmericaThe Paycheck Protection Program and Health Care Enhancement Act. It provides additional funding for the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP), Economic Injury Disaster Loans (EIDL) and Grants, healthcare providers and testing. This action gets help to the people who need it most. 

This bill includes: 

Paycheck Protection Program Improvements: 

  • Adding an additional $310 billion in PPP loans
  • $60 billion set aside for smaller lenders and Community Development Financial institutions, including:
    • $30 billion for banks and credit unions with more than $10 billion in assets but less than $50 billion
    • $30 billion for banks and credit unions with less than $10 billion in assets

Economic Injury Disaster Program Expansions: 

  • Increases available funding for EIDL grants by $10 billion.
  • Allows agricultural businesses with not more than 500 employees to receive EIDL grants and loans.
  • Adds an extra $50 billion to the Disaster Loans Program Account.

Strengthening Health Care and Testing

  • $75 billion for hospitals and healthcare workers to cover reimbursements 
  • Requires a Federal COVID-19 Strategic Testing Plan
  • $25 billion to expand COVID-19 testing, including: 
    • $11 billion for states and localities
    • $225 million for rural health clinics
    • $ 1 billion for the uninsured

The Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act gave additional resources to combat this virus and provide relief to small business, workers, schools, students and farmers, among others:

  • For fighting the coronavirus - $150 billion for health equipment, infrastructure, and medical research to give our healthcare professionals the resources they desperately need during this emergency.  
    • $100 billion for a new program to provide grants to hospitals, public entities, not-for-profit entities, and Medicare and Medicaid enrolled suppliers and institutional providers to cover health care related expenses resulting from the coronavirus.
    • $27 billion for the Public Health and Social Services Emergency Fund
    • $1.3 billion for Community Health Centers for COVID testing and treatment and an increase of over $2 billion for Community Health Centers for general services in 2020.
    • $1 billion for the Defense Production Act to bolster domestic supply chains, enabling industry to quickly ramp up production of personal protective equipment, ventilators, and other urgently needed medical supplies. 
  • For our workers - $260 billion in Unemployment Insurance benefits to match the average paycheck of laid-off or furloughed workers, caused by the Coronavirus. 
    • Pandemic Unemployment Assistance for self-employed workers and contractors who are not eligible for regular unemployment benefits.
    • For our small businesses - $377 billion in grants and loan payment relief, including making rent, mortgage and utility costs eligible for SBA loan forgiveness. 
    • Relief for small business owners, including self-employed individuals and independent contractors through the Paycheck Protection Program. 
  • For our students - $30.75 billion in emergency education funding and eliminated employer income tax on student loan repayment assistance programs, ensuring continuation of these programs.
  • For our rural communities - $100 million for the construction and equipment necessary to increase rural  broadband access and telehealth opportunities, as well as $250 million for Certified Community Behavioral Health Clinics. 
  • For our farmers - $40 billion in emergency food and farm aid to support our vulnerable communities and our essential agricultural workers who feed America.
    • $450 million for food banks (Emergency Food Assistance Program). 

Since the outbreak, Congress has passed, and the President has signed, 2 additional bipartisan bills, H.R.6201 - Families First Coronavirus Response Act and H.R.6074 - Coronavirus Preparedness and Response Supplemental Appropriations Act, which provided:

  • Free coronavirus testing for everyone who needs a test, including the uninsured.  
  • Paid emergency leave, with both 14 days of paid sick leave and up to three months of paid family and medical leave. 
  • Enhanced Unemployment Insurance, a first step that will extend protections to furloughed workers.  
  • Strengthened food security initiatives, including SNAP, student meals, seniors’ nutrition and food banks. 
  • Increased federal funds for Medicaid, as states face increased costs.  
  • $3.2 billion to bolster prevention, preparedness, and response efforts.
  • $950 million to support state and local health agencies.
  • Nearly $1 billion to procure medicine and supplies for Community Health Centers.
  • $3 billion for vaccine and treatment development.

We will continue to find solutions to take care of American’s health and safety, and to get our economy back on track.

  • Sent a letter to Gov. Newsom seeking resources for our Valley, and coordinated efforts with state and federal Valley legislators.
  • Called on President Trump to remove limitations on Coronavirus Food Assistance Program (CFAP) payments.
  • Sent a letter to Secretary Purdue, urging direct relief for dairy producers. 
  • We led a letter with fellow members of the Congressional Hispanic Caucus to press Leadership to provide support for our farmworkers.
  • Sent a bipartisan letter to USDA calling on them to provide direct support to specialty crop producers. 
  • Urged Administrator Carranza to include small farms in SBA Economic Injury Disaster Loan eligibility.
  • Sent a letter to Secretary Purdue urging inclusion of relief for cattle ranchers in the CARES Act.
  • Called on Congressional Leadership to increase Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) benefits during the COVID-19 crisis. 
  • Sent a letter to Secretary Purdue to use CARES Act funding to help flower producers who are experiencing a dramatic reduction in demand.
  • Asked Secretary Purdue consider direct assistance to agricultural businesses who have lost markets to ensure no farmer gets left behind.  

Healthcare and Health Professionals:

Tax Relief:

  • Called on Congressional Leadership to include state and local government payroll tax credits to provide needed relief so they can continue to provide critical services. 
  • Sent a letter to House Leadership emphasizing the need to repeal the State and Local Tax Deduction cap in a fourth federal stimulus package. 
  • Urged IRS Commissioner Rettig to extend the filing and payment deadline for tax exempt organizations. 


  • Reached out to USDA to get regulations waived so school districts are reimbursed for the school breakfast and lunch program while schools are shut down.
  • Sent a letter to Chairman Pai to grant a reduced e-rate for students forced to learn remotely.


  • Sent a letter to House Leadership to provide Amtrak and rail with relief. 

Other Important Steps: