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Below are actions Kyrsten is taking to address the spread of coronavirus.
Federal coronavirus-response legislation: click HERE.
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Kyrsten is continuing to work across the aisle and with local communities to ensure Arizonans have up-to-date, accurate information. Below are some steps Kyrsten is taking to help ensure the health and safety for Arizonans:
Kyrsten has helped secure increased resources for Arizona hospitals, health care workers, families, testing, small businesses, and cities and towns in coronavirus-relief bills:
- Kyrsten helped secure increased resources for hospitals, Arizona’s testing capacity, and funding for PPP and EIDL in recent Congressionally-approved coronavirus relief legislation. Read about the bill HERE.
- Kyrsten voted for and helped shape the CARES Act, which includes massive investments in Arizona’s hospitals and health care workers and immediate economic assistance for Arizona families, workers, and small businesses. Read more about Kyrsten’s work on the package HERE and read the bill itself HERE.
- Kyrsten voted for the Congressionally-approved $8 billion package to address coronavirus, providing necessary funding to keep families, seniors, schools, and other vulnerable populations safe. These resources will also begin to reimburse the AZ Department of Health Services for money already spent ensuring Arizonans’ safety. Read more about these resources HERE.
- Kyrsten voted for the Congressionally-approved Families First Coronavirus Response Act to ensure coronavirus testing is more widely available and deliver relief to Arizona families and small businesses.
- Kyrsten is serving on the White House task force focused on economic recovery from the coronavirus pandemic. The task force is comprised of a bipartisan group of Senators and members of the House of Representatives, and will provide counsel to the administration on the re-opening of American businesses and employers.
Kyrsten has successfully advocated for Arizona veterans, SSI recipients, seniors, and Tribal communities. Kyrsten has also helped secure critical PPE for Arizona first responders and community health centers and is working to secure increased resources for Arizona hospitals, airports, and small businesses:
- Kyrsten successfully got the Treasury Department and the Small Business Administration (SBA) to reverse course and make administrative changes allowing Tribal gaming operations to apply for and receive Paycheck Protection Program funding.
- Kyrsten successfully got the Treasury Department to allow veterans receiving compensation and pension benefits through the VA access to coronavirus-related rebate checks without having to file their taxes or take additional steps that may become barriers.
- Kyrsten successfully ensured Arizona recipients of Supplemental Security Income (SSI) will automatically receive their rebate check under the CARES Act and will not be required to file a tax return.
- Kyrsten successfully called on the Treasury Department to follow the CARES Act law and ensure all Arizona Social Security beneficiaries will automatically receive the direct assistance included in the CARES Act without having to file tax returns.
- Kyrsten secured 7,500 masks and 7,500 acrylic shields for the Professional Firefighters of Arizona through the IRONMAN Foundation’s Operation IRONAID Face Masks in partnership with Framebridge.
- Kyrsten facilitated a donation of personal protective equipment from General Dynamics for the Arizona Alliance of Community Health Centers through Protect AZ, an Arizona non-profit connecting front-line health care workers to critical medical equipment during the coronavirus outbreak.
- Kyrsten helped secure $6.4 million in Advanced Medicare payments from the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services for Santa Cruz Valley Regional Hospital. The funding is a first step, and Kyrsten will continue working to ensure rural and community hospitals, like Santa Cruz Valley Regional Hospital, receive more relief so they can stay open, keep paying their employees, and provide critical care for Arizonans during the coronavirus outbreak.
- Kyrsten helped secure over $220 million in federal funding for Arizona airports from the bipartisan CARES Act. This grant announcement follows Kyrsten’s work to ensure massive investment in Arizona’s airports—which have been particularly impacted by the coronavirus pandemic—among other top Arizona priorities.
- Kyrsten successfully got the FCC to extend the deadline until June 30th for health care providers to apply for the 2020 Rural Health Care Program, allowing Arizona health care providers on the front lines to focus on fighting coronavirus in their communities.
- Kyrsten successfully urged the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) to cut red tape and grant the request from the Arizona Health Care Cost Containment System (AHCCCS) for critical flexibility needed to care for vulnerable Arizonans during the coronavirus outbreak.
- Kyrsten asked FEMA to extend deadlines for Preparedness Grant applications. These grants will allocate almost $1.8 billion essential for mitigation, protection, prevention, response, and recovery from emergencies, major disasters, and terrorist attacks. Applications are due to close from Friday, March 20th to Friday, May 1st. Entities working to protect public health and safety today, should not be required to forego the support they will need tomorrow. Read Kyrsten's letter HERE.
- Kyrsten pressed the SBA to approve Governor Ducey’s request for a disaster declaration under the Small Business Act. Small Businesses make up 99 percent of Arizona’s businesses and employ 44 percent of Arizona’s workforce. A disaster declaration by the SBA will allow Arizona small businesses to apply for much needed working capital through Economic Injury Disaster Loans. Read Kyrsten's letter HERE.
- Kyrsten wrote Congressional leaders urging them to include broadband funding in future coronavirus relief packages to help students in rural Arizona continue accessing educational resources during the coronavirus outbreak.
- Kyrsten and Republican Senator Mitt Romney (Utah) urged the Director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) to implement a robust contact tracing system to protect Arizonans from the spread of the coronavirus and future pandemics.
- Kyrsten urged Vice President Pence and the White House Task Force to implement a single online webform that would allow the CDC to directly collect information from travelers and provide a more complete, accurate, and timely collection of data. Kyrsten stressed the critical need for collaboration between the government and private industry to help the government launch the website. Read Kyrsten’s letter HERE.
Kyrsten is working to secure additional resources for Arizona cities and towns to assist in their fight against the coronavirus pandemic:
- Kyrsten is hosting weekly calls with Arizona mayors and county leaders to discuss their coronavirus-related concerns and provide an update on the Congressionally-approved coronavirus relief packages.
- Kyrsten urged Congressional leaders and Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin to include dedicated, flexible funding for state, local, and tribal governments with less than 500,000 residents in the next coronavirus emergency funding package.
- Kyrsten led the Arizona Congressional delegation in urging the President to grant a Major Disaster Declaration for Arizona, allowing Arizona to access more public safety resources to combat the coronavirus outbreak.
- Kyrsten joined a bipartisan group of Senators urging the White House to set up two specialized task forces to improve access to medical supplies and ensure that treatments and vaccines for COVID-19 are developed as efficiently as possible. Read Kyrsten’s letter HERE.
- Kyrsten joined a group of colleagues urging the administration to declare a national emergency and free up additional resources. Read Kyrsten’s letter HERE.
- Kyrsten Sinema urged Treasury Secretary Mnuchin to quickly issue guidance on how Arizona can allocate coronavirus funding for counties and cities with less than 500,000 residents and ensure rural communities get their fair share of coronavirus-relief funds.
- Kyrsten helped introduce legislation looking to provide economic relief to Arizona’s rural hospitals during the coronavirus outbreak so they can keep their doors open, pay their workers, and continue serving our communities.
- Kyrsten urged the administration to improve collaboration with the 22 federally recognized Tribes in Arizona in its response to COVID-19 to ensure Tribal communities have the resources they need to fight coronavirus.
- Kyrsten urged the Director of FEMA to waive tribal governments’ portion of costs of FEMA’s coronavirus response efforts to protect the health and safety of tribal communities. Kyrsten’s letter follows the request of Navajo Nation President Jonathan Nez that the non-federal cost-share portion of the FEMA-Tribal Agreement be waived.
- Kyrsten urged immediate implementation of the CARES Act law to ensure that rural providers and hospitals receive the relief they need to keep their doors open and continue serving rural and underserved communities in Arizona.
Kyrsten continues working to make health care more affordable and accessible for everyday Arizonans:
- Kyrsten urged Congressional leaders to protect health care coverage for Arizonans who lose their jobs, their employer-sponsored health care coverage, or can no longer afford insurance due to the coronavirus outbreak.
- Kyrsten led members of the Arizona Congressional delegation in a letter urging the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) and the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) to allow retainer payments for Arizona Health Care Cost Containment System’s (AHCCCS) providers. Retainer payments through AHCCCS will help health care providers address economic losses due to the coronavirus outbreak.
- Kyrsten introduced bipartisan legislation with Republican Senator Deb Fischer ensuring respirators used by patients and health workers have liability coverage and are available for Arizona communities.
- Kyrsten helped introduce legislation ensuring Arizonans can access free COVID-19 tests.
- Kyrsten helped introduce legislation making Arizona seniors’ care more affordable and increasing resources for seniors during the coronavirus outbreak.
- Kyrsten led members of Arizona’s Congressional delegation in questioning how the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) is protecting agriculture inspectors, Arizona farmers, and Arizona communities at Arizona ports of entry during tomato season.
Kyrsten continues working to ensure Arizona seniors and veterans get the benefits and care they’ve earned:
- Kyrsten objected to the Department of Treasury’s and the IRS’s arbitrary and unfair rule that would prevent some Arizona Social Security, Supplemental Security Income, and VA Compensation and Pension (C&P) beneficiaries from receiving their economic stimulus payments for their children in a timely manner.
- Kyrsten and Arizona Attorney General Mark Brnovich teamed up to urge Arizona seniors to be aware and on the lookout for new COVID-19 related scams.
- Kyrsten wrote the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) and the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) urging them to allow Arizona seniors to receive certain Medicare Part B injections and infusions at home instead of a doctor’s office to protect them during the coronavirus outbreak.
- Kyrsten and a bipartisan group of Senators urged the Federal Trade Commission to protect Arizona seniors from COVID-19 related scams.
- Kyrsten asked the VA about steps it’s taking to protect the health of veterans and staff. Kyrsten encouraged the VA to work with the CDC on preparedness, and partner with Congress if it needs additional resources. Read Kyrsten’s letter HERE.
- Kyrsten wrote to the Administration for Community Living to ensure that the local Area Agencies on Aging in Arizona can continue to provide congregate meals and home delivered meals to our seniors and some of the most vulnerable to the coronavirus.
- Kyrsten helped introduce bipartisan legislation which was passed into law that maintains housing allowance payments for student veterans using VA education benefits at the on-campus rate if the school converts to online education due to COVID-19.