MANH Lawmakers on the Move, Aug. 25, 2020

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Espaillat Calls on Republicans to Pass HEROES Act

U.S. Rep. Adriano Espaillat (Photo credit: U.S. House Office of Photography)
U.S. Rep. Adriano Espaillat

Yesterday, U.S. Rep. Adriano Espaillat (D-Manhattan, Bronx) marked the 100-day anniversary of the passage of the HEROES Act, a sweeping COVID-19 response bill, in the House.

The provisions of the HEROES Act include the allocation of $75 billion for COVID-19 testing, tracing and treatment, $175 billion for rent relief for renters and homeowners, and $10 billion for emergency grants to small businesses. The bill passed the House months ago, but the Senate has yet to even call it to a vote.

“As the Republicans’ deadly, 100 days of inaction continues, the coronavirus is spiraling out of control,” said Espaillat. “Democrats have come to the table willing to compromise, but President Trump and Senate Republicans refuse to do even the bare minimum needed to defeat the virus and protect struggling families. On behalf of my constituents, New York families, seniors, veterans and small business owners, I call upon Leader McConnell and the Trump Administration to get serious about the needs of working families, stop the unnecessary delays and reach an agreement that puts workers and families first.”

De Blasio Announces Partnership with New York Yankees to Fight COVID-19 and Increase Testing

Mayor Bill de Blasio (Credit: William Alatriste)
Mayor Bill de Blasio

Yesterday, Mayor Bill de Blasio (D) announced the New York Yankees will be sponsoring the NYC Test & Trace Corps’ “Get Tested Tuesday” Day of Action.

As part of the deal, the Yankees will give away merchandise to the first 4,000 New Yorkers who get tested tomorrow at any NYC Health + Hospitals location. They will also air a PSA to promote the “Core Four” best ways to fight the virus (wash your hands, social distance, wear a mask and stay home if you feel ill).

“Regardless of whether you’re a Yankees, Mets, or Red Sox fan, one thing is clear about New Yorkers: we look out for one another,” said de Blasio. “Getting a test isn’t just about protecting yourself—it’s a civic duty to your fellow New Yorkers. Testing and tracing remains our best defense against the virus, and we will continue to do everything we can to ensure New Yorkers can protect themselves and their loved ones.”

Cuomo Announces Opening Date for Lower-Risk School Sports

Governor Andrew Cuomo (Photo Credit:
Governor Andrew Cuomo

Yesterday, Governor Andrew Cuomo (D) announced that lower-risk school sports may begin playing again starting Sep. 21.

“Lower-risk” refers to sports with relatively minimal physical contact; sports in this category include soccer, tennis, field hockey and swimming. High-risk sports, such as football, may begin practicing on Sep. 21 but will not be allowed to compete until a later date.

“The State has done a lot of research on how we can safely have our students participate in school sports and get the exercise they need, and the guidance we developed will allow lower-risk sports to begin practicing and playing next month,” Cuomo said. “We are approaching youth sports as we have approached everything else in our phased reopening – teams are not allowed to compete outside a school’s region or contiguous region for the time being until we can gauge the effects.”

Schumer Demands Complete Report on Election Mail Delivery

U.S. Senator Chuck Schumer (Photo credit:
U.S. Senator Chuck Schumer

Yesterday, U.S. Senator Chuck Schumer (D) announced a demand for the USPS to hand him a report in two weeks that outlines how they plan to ensure the timely delivery of November election mail.

Schumer specifically directed his demand at the USPS Board of Governors’ newly formed bipartisan Election Mail Committee. The chairman of the committee is Governor Lee Moak (D), whom Schumer appointed.

“In the past several days, Postmaster DeJoy has had to walk back some of his efforts to undermine and dismantle the post office ahead of the November election, but today we are here to say: actions speak louder than words and that those actions will come from sharp oversight,” said Schumer. “There will be no rubber stamp on the postmaster’s talking points, because, quite frankly, he has lost credibility in Congress and with the American people. That is why I am demanding a report be handed to Congress in two weeks that outlines just how election mail will be delivered on time. We have to protect the election, the mail itself, and hold this postmaster accountable, which is what I told the Chairman of the new Election Mail Committee must be accomplished.”