; Notes from the Senate

Notes from the Senate

By | April 2, 2020 2:56 pm

by SEN. JACK HILL, 4th District

WHAT IF YOU HAD TO JUST STOP FOR TWO WEEKS?

“Deep beneath an undisclosed location….” No, actually from my office! I have been working every day using the phone and computer to stay in touch and work on problems and issues for constituents. By the time many of you read this, my quarantine period, March. 30, will be over. Good news is I feel good and have (knock on wood) no symptoms. Worst part is not being able to get in the Assisted Living to see Ruth Ann but we have communicated by phone.

A LOT OF INFORMATION FLOWING

There is a good bit of information flowing back and forth…this can be overwhelming. I’ll share with you a limited number of links that have been useful to me and others.

www.dol.gov/agencies/whd/pandemic/ffcra-employer-paid-leave#_ftn2

www.sba.gov/funding-programs/disaster-assistance

https://dol.georgia.gov/gov/unemployment-benefits or call Tammy Liner, 404-232-7383 or tammy.liner@gdol.ga.gov

• Apply for SNAP Benefits? Gateway.ga.gov

• Download application https://dfcs.georgia.gov/services

• EBT? https://www.connectebt.com/gaebtclient

• Problems with SNAP Benefits? Try brooke.shaddix@dhs.ga.gov

• Mental Health issues? https://dbhdd.georgia.gov or Georgia Crisis & Access line 1-800-715-4225 (no “1” needed on cell phone.)

• Department of Driver Services-Automatic DL extension for over 60 drivers: https://dds.georgia.gov/coronavirus-covid-19

One big issue for those with loved ones in nursing homes or assisted living is the lack of oversight brought on by completely restricted visiting by family members. If you have concerns, remember that the Long-Term Care Ombudsman Program is your representative. Problems or Concerns? Go towww.georgiaombudsman.org or 866-552-4464 Option 5

MAY PRIMARY TO GO ON

You will get the opportunity to vote in the Primaries on May 19. It looks like, though, you will have an easy opportunity to vote absentee ballot in this election. The Secretary of State announced that every voter will receive by mail an absentee ballot application where you can apply for an absentee ballot. So watch out for that mail and you can vote from home.

CORONAVIRUS-WHEN WILL IT END?

No, I do not have any prediction as to when we will get a handle on the virus and the numbers will start to recede. You get the feeling that it will take a complete shutdown of some sort to “bend that curve”.

I do look for some permanent changes in the way everyone operates post virus.

For one, we have learned that video/phone conferences do work and I expect that many government and business users will reduce travel and use even more technology from now on.

Second, I think health officials and those who house elderly and those more susceptible to illness will be quicker to restrict visitors and outside contact.

Third, maybe we all have a clearer view of the world, the ways we are all connected and a more overarching view of our planet and the need to make decisions with a positive impact.

Fourth, this crisis has shown a bright light on local small businesses, their vulnerability, value to the community and how we should all make a conscious effort to support them.

Fifth, the power of the internet and social communication has been demonstrated both for good and otherwise as well. The negative was seen in the paper goods panic buying which was fomented through social networks. And yet, when someone is identified as needing assistance or help, the public is very responsive to Facebook and other social networks.

RURAL HOSPITALS TO RECEIVE FUNDS

Two rural hospitals are receiving funds from an appropriation added in conference to the FY 2020 Budget recently. Evans Memorial is set to receive $489,713.16 and Emanuel County Hospital is slated to receive $373,043.23.

GO FISHING?

If you think about it, fishing is one form of recreation you can do alone or with even some else, staying 6 feet apart is doable. But, the rivers are probably still too full, so if you were interested in something besides a local pond, I would suggest the DNR Public Fishing Area in Evans County just off the Canoochee River East of Claxton near US 280. DNR has spent over $1 million on this public fishing area and now has campsites, an archery range and good fishing in three lakes. For info and questions answered, try 706-557-3333, or try GeorgiaWildlife.com.

I may be reached at 234 State Capitol, Atlanta, GA 30334; 404-656-5038 (phone); 404-657-7094 (fax); e-mail at Jack.Hill@senate.ga.gov; toll-free at 1-800-367-3334, day or night; or by phone at my Reidsville office, 912-557-3811.

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