05/29/2020: COVID-19 Coronavirus Response Update

COVID-19 Coronavirus Response Update

May 29, 2020
It’s been a busy week here in Washington, and I’m looking forward to heading back to Hawai‘i tomorrow. We passed an important bill that improves the Paycheck Protection Program so that it works better for businesses and workers. Our Hawai‘i Congressional Delegation joined together to call on the USDA to make sure its Coronavirus Food Assistance Program helps more of Hawai‘i’s farmers.
On Wednesday, I hosted another telephone town hall to answer your questions about coronavirus testing, relief programs, and what we have to do in order to reopen safely.
I wish you all a safe weekend! If we can provide assistance in any way, please don’t hesitate to call me at (808) 541-1986 or email me at TulsiOffice@mail.house.gov.
Mahalo and be well,
Tulsi Gabbard
Member of Congress (HI-02)

Next Telephone Town Hall Update

I will be hosting my next tele-town hall on Wednesday. You can listen to my recent COVID-19 update tele-town halls or sign up for upcoming tele-town hall meetings by visiting my website today!
Telephone Town Hall | COVID-19 Update # 12
Wednesday, June 3 at 4:00 p.m. Hawai‘i Time

CDC: COVID-19 Employer Information for Office Buildings

As more of America looks ahead to reopening, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has outlined some broad measures that it recommends following to do so safely. It outlines conditions that should be met, steps that should be taken before reopening, and best practices for when businesses reopen. Read the CDC webpage for more information.

$10 Billion in PPP Funds Set Aside for CDFIs

The U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA), in consultation with the U.S. Treasury Department, announced that it is setting aside $10 billion of Round 2 funding for the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) to be lent exclusively by Community Development Financial Institutions (CDFIs).  CDFIs work to expand economic opportunity in low-income communities by providing access to financial products and services for local residents and businesses.  These dedicated funds will further ensure that the PPP reaches all communities in need of relief during the COVID-19 pandemic — a key priority for President Trump.
At the beginning of May, I sent a bipartisan letter to the SBA, in part, asking that this happen.

REMINDER: Coronavirus Food Assistance Program for Farmers

The Coronavirus Food Assistance Program, or CFAP, provides vital financial assistance to producers of agricultural commodities who have suffered a five-percent-or-greater price decline or who had losses due to market supply chain disruptions due to COVID-19 and face additional significant market costs. The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) is accepting applications now through August 28, 2020. Producers should apply through the Farm Service Agency at their local USDA Service Center. Read more about the program and eligible commodities.
I am working with the Hawai‘i Congressional Delegation to get the USDA to improve CFAP so it covers more of Hawai‘i’s farmers. You can read our letter here.

COVID-19 Hawai‘i News

Testing in Hawai‘i — Since yesterday, there were a total of 3 new cases and 0 additional COVID-19 related deaths. To date, there are 649 individuals in Hawai‘i who have tested positive for COVID-19. Of the 649 cases, 17 have died, 83 required hospitalization and 605 have been released from isolation. There have been 54,019 diagnostic tests conducted as of today.
Note that as a result of updated testing information, one case was removed from the counts.
Honolulu Shares Guidelines for Reopening Businesses — The City and County of Honolulu continues to provide information about COVID-19 resources via the oneoahu.org website. With efforts to reopen the state safely proceeding, the County has outlined measures that business, workers, and customers should follow so that reopening O‘ahu is good for our public health AND economy. Read more about these guidelines here.
Hawai‘i County Pamphlet is One-Stop Shop of Local Info/Resources — The County of Hawai‘i continues to add to its resources online to keep residents updated regarding testing and relief efforts as well as programs to help meet the needs of families during this pandemic. It just put a two page pamphlet online that brings a wide range of items together for folks on the Big Island to use as we push through this pandemic. View side 1 and side 2 of the pamphlet.
Upcoming Food Distribution — Here are details regarding upcoming food distribution events:
  • Naalehu | Naalehu Shopping Center | Monday, June 1 | 10am*
  • Keaau | Keaau High School | Tuesday, June 2 | 10am*
  • * Or until food supply is depleted. Please arrive early.
  • Sat., May 30 on the North Shore

Testing Sites and DLIR UI Information

Hawai‘i Island
Check out the County of Hawai‘i’s COVID-19 webpage for which lists over a dozen testing sites which are regularly open (see schedules).
Kamakoa Nui Park
Sat., May 30, ONLY, from 9:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m.
End of Paniolo Avenue, Waikoloa 96738
St. Jude Church
Wed., June 3 ONLY, from 10:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m.
92-8606 Paradise Circle, Ocean View 96737
Maui County
While no drive-thru testing sites have been announced yet for tomorrow, you can visit the County’s website for other testing sites on Maui, Moloka‘i, and Lānaʻi.
City and County of Honolulu
No testing sites have been announced, but you can check out the City and County of Honolulu’s dedicated COVID-19 information webpage.
Kaua‘i County
Daily @ Wilcox Medical Center 
Monday-Friday @ Kaua‘i Veterans Memorial Hospital
Kapa‘a | Details (video update, 5:45 mark)
Monday-Friday, 10:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m.
Kaua‘i Medical Clinic
Unemployment Insurance Compensation Claims — Here is a rundown of the new resources that the Hawai‘i Department of Labor and Industrial Relations (DLIR) is making available to assist individuals filing unemployment insurance compensation claims.
As of May 11, 2020, the DLIR is using an alphabetical system for filing unemployment insurance claims to help ease the strain on its system and streamline the process. Those whose last name starts with the letters:
  • A through G should file on Mondays.
  • H through O should file on Tuesdays.
  • P through Z should file on Wednesdays.
If you missed your day, everyone can file on Thursdays through Sunday.
The hours to file are Monday through Friday from 6:30 a.m. to 11 p.m. On weekends and holidays, 9 a.m. to 11 p.m.
General Website
Application for Determination of Insured Status
Unemployment Benefits Claim Status
Federal Pandemic Unemployment Assistance
Newly Out of Work Unemployment Claim: (808) 762- 5752
If You Have Filed Unemployment Before: (808) 762-5751
Unemployment Office Call Center: (833) 901-2275
O‘ahu Claims Office: ​dlir.ui.oahu@hawaii.gov
Hilo Claims Office: dlir.ui.hilo@hawaii.gov
Kona Claims Office: dlir.ui.kona@hawaii.gov
Maui Claims Office: dlir.ui.maui@hawaii.gov
Kaua‘i Claims Office: dlir.ui.kauai@hawaii.gov
Individuals who would like to have their claim backdated (the backdate will be for their first week of less than full employment due to COVID-19): dlir.ui.backdate@hawaii.gov
Individuals who have received an email, letter or other message (screenshot) that says that they are disqualified from UI:​ ​dlir.ui.disqualified@hawaii.gov
Individuals who would like to request language assistance from UI (the interpretation services would be provided free of charge and via telephone): dlir.ui.languageassistance@hawaii.gov

Office Locations