The Road to Recovery 
Dear Friends,

There’s finally a light at the end of the tunnel. America is taking precautionary steps to reopen, and we’re making progress toward renewing the booming economic prosperity we had seen just weeks ago.

Who could have ever imagined that 30 million Americans would now be jobless?  That’s 18% of our workforce. We shut down the economy to guarantee that the medical system would not be overwhelmed. Most of the country has successfully managed that challenge.

Now, we’re beginning to reopen the country, but we need to reopen the economy. Today’s employment numbers are a clear warning: the longer we wait, the more difficult the recovery.

Georgia is prioritizing business owners and putting its people first, but it’s not forcing anyone to open up shop until they are fully comfortable doing so. On Friday, Governor Brian Kemp will lift a statewide shelter-in-place order for Georgia residents. The order requires high-risk residents to shelter-in-place until June 12th and calls for businesses to follow important safety restrictions through May 13th.  The local economy is far too important to put by the wayside and so Georgians are getting back to work.

Georgians deserve better.

Americans deserve better.

Fortunately, Georgia is putting its people first and prioritizing getting businesses up and running again. Thanks to Governor Brian Kemp, employers who are able to reopen safely are being allowed to do so. While some are waiting until they feel more comfortable, I’ve had the chance to speak with many businesses owners who are eager to open their doors. On Friday, Governor Brian Kemp will lift a statewide shelter-in-place order for Georgia residents. The order requires high-risk residents to shelter-in-place until June 12th and calls for businesses to follow important safety restrictions through May 13th.  The local economy is far too important to put by the wayside and so Georgians are getting back to work.

On Tuesday, I joined C-SPAN’s Washington Journal to discuss Georgia’s steps in re-opening the state’s economy. Click here to watch the clip.



Keeping Georgia Safe
The expansion of testing is key to our fight against COVID-19. I encourage Georgians who are experiencing symptoms consistent with COVID-19 to act by taking advantage of free, statewide COVID-19 screening and testing. 

For weeks, the state has worked closely with private labs and local health departments to address the need for more testing and ramp up capacity in each region of Georgia. To get a free screening by an Augusta University Health System doctor, visit www.AugustaHealth.org, download AU Health ExpressCare on your smartphone, or call (706) 721-1852.


If you meet criteria for testing, healthcare staff will contact you to schedule a test at one of the state’s designated testing locations near your home. Click here for the full list of Georgia Department of Public Health COVID-19 testing sites, which includes several locations within our district:

Just this week, the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) awarded a grant to Augusta University for the expansion of telehealth services during this crisis. Augusta University will use the funds to expand its portable ultrasound program to differentiate and screen COVID-19 patients for different types of respiratory diseases prior to hospital admittance. I was pleased to offer a letter of support for this worthy program and even more pleased to know that this important research institution will continue to deliver life-saving services to rural Georgia.


The Georgia Department of Economic Development just announced its latest initiative to help Georgians fighting on the front lines against COVID-19. Their “Georgia Suppliers List” has been updated to feature companies state-wide ready to supply first-responders with critical health care items and PPE. For more information, or a link to the list of companies participating, click here, or visit their Facebook page.
Veteran-Farmer Making a Difference

In 2017, I had the honor of meeting Jon Jackson, executive director of Stag Vets and founder of Comfort Farms in Milledgeville. He works with veterans to help raise heritage breeds of beef, pork, and other meat as well as produce, dairy products and honey. These are specialty items that, before the coronavirus, were in high demand from Georgia’s top restaurants. Now, Jackson is making them available to hungry families through a virtual farmers market. To read more about Comfort Farms, click here. Keep up the good work, Jon!


Online Voting is Underway
Online voting now is open for the 2020 Congressional Art Competition, and I invite you to cast your vote! Join me in celebrating student art by visiting my Facebook page and leaving an encouraging word for our talented youth. 


I will award one point for each "like" and two points for each "share" with a limit of one share per person per day. The artwork with the most points wins and will hang for one year in the U.S. Capitol. Voting
closes at 3:00 p.m. on Thursday, May 7th.



Click here to view more student entries and to cast your vote. 

New House Freedom Caucus Podcast
Last week, I had the pleasure of interviewing my good friend, and Chairman of the Freedom Caucus, Congressman Andy Biggs from the great state of Arizona.


In this episode, Andy sheds light on some of the latest happenings in Washington and how Speaker Pelosi’s latest shenanigans prevented House Freedom Caucus members from bettering new coronavirus relief funding. He breaks it all down, and we discuss the pressing need for states to allow their economy to reopen safely and swiftly.

To listen click here. Available for download on Apple Podcast and Soundcloud

Social Security Income Program

This pandemic brought many unexpected burdens, and for some, it brought financial hardship. The IRS is providing the aged, blind, and disabled with financial assistance during this difficult time. The Supplemental Security Income program provides recipients with dependent children under 17 with cash to meet basic needs for food, clothing and shelter.

If you or someone you know qualifies, click here. Applicants will need to provide the Social Security Number (SSN) of each dependent child. Payments at this time will be $1,200 only, however,  applicants will be able to file for a 2020 tax return to obtain the additional $500 per eligible child.

Please be cautious of possible scams. No fee is required to receive these payments. Visit Social Security’s COVID-19 webpage for important information and updates. 

As always if you have any questions, please feel free to contact us.

Sincerely,

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In This Edition
The Road to Recovery
Keeping Georgia Safe
Veteran-Farmer Making a Difference
Online Voting is Underway
New House Freedom Caucus Podcast
Social Security Income Program
 
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