The COVID-19 pandemic has taken a huge toll on New Jersey. We’ve lost neighbors and loved ones, businesses have suffered or have had to close their doors, and our children have lost critical time in the classroom. But we have also seen countless examples of how New Jersey comes together when times are tough to support and look after each other.
I’ve brought those Jersey values with me to Congress to fight for aid for our state, hospitals, long-term care facilities, first responders, workers, and small businesses. While we’ve made progress, the Administration has failed to implement a national strategy. I will keep working for more support for New Jersey and to continue to break through Washington’s partisan gridlock.
During the COVID-19 pandemic, I have fought to bring an estimated $4 billion to the 11th District and its four counties, including funding for our hospitals, schools, small businesses, residents, first responders, and federally funded health centers. An additional $1 billion went to residents through state and federal unemployment benefits. The House passed the bipartisan CARES Act which expanded funding for testing and production of PPE here at home, included enhanced unemployment insurance and $1,200 economic impact payments, and provided millions to our hospitals and community health centers in NJ-11. I fought to get federal resources to New Jersey to support nursing homes and other long-term care facilities in our community. I am also leading two bipartisan bills to expand access to telehealth services that have been so important for residents during the COVID-19 pandemic.
I’ve also worked in Congress to increase funding for training and prevention programs that will help healthcare providers, social workers, and mental health professionals help friends and neighbors struggling during COVID.
But more needs to be done to keep New Jersey residents and frontline workers safe and support our economy.
Our small businesses are suffering as a result of the unprecedented COVID-19 public health crisis. Listening to our small business community during this crisis has been vital, and my roundtables with small business owners, meetings with local chambers of commerce, and surveys of small businesses have been invaluable as I’ve pushed for more small business support. I voted for legislation that established and improved the Paycheck Protection Program that helps small businesses keep people employed during this economic crisis, created grant programs, and enabled New Jersey to set up rental and mortgage assistance for small businesses. I’m also supporting the bipartisan Small Business PPE Tax Credit Act. This legislation would provide a tax credit up to $25,000 to small businesses for the purchase of personal protective equipment. I won’t stop working to help our local businesses survive this crisis.
Economists have said that the expanded unemployment benefits have helped keep millions of Americans out of poverty and helped to keep up spending at businesses across the country. In our community, housing organizations I’ve met with talk about the role the expanded benefits have played in keeping our neighbors in their homes. I will continue to fight for expanded unemployment benefits that are so important to New Jerseyans getting to the other side of this crisis. I’ve also supported the Worker Relief and Security Act to extend unemployment benefits through the crisis and make adjustments based on public health and economic conditions.