Maui News

Senate Advances Ige’s Request for $10M in Emergency Funds for COVID-19

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Governor providing updates on COVID-19. PC: Governor David Ige Facebook

The Hawai‘i Senate Ways and Means Committee today advanced a bill to provide Governor David Ige’s request for an emergency appropriation of $10,568,750 to the Hawai‘i Departments of Health and Defense for prevention and mitigation of COVID-19, the novel coronavirus.

SB75 was amended to contain the governor’s full funding request. The bill is expected to move to the full Senate for third reading on Tuesday, March 3.

The bill provides the Department of Health $6.6M; Department of Transportation $2,788,750; and Department of Defense $1,180,000.


Today’s updates: The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has confirmed an infection with the virus that causes COVID-19 in California in a person who reportedly did not have relevant travel history or exposure to another known patient with COVID-19.  Also today, Japan ordered all elementary, junior high and high schools nationwide to close from Monday through spring break, which typically ends in early April.

More information on COVID-19 can be found at the following links: State of Hawaiʻi, Department of Health (includes Frequently Asked Questions in languages other than English); and Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

The Hawai‘i Department of Health is advising people to take steps now to prepare should the risk of community spread increase.

  • Prepare a family plan should there be a COVID-19 outbreak in Hawaiʻi. If you have a large family in one home, consider what measures you can take to prevent the spread of illness.
  • Prepare a kit similar to those used during hurricane seasons. These should include a 14-day supply of food, water and other necessities.
  • Set aside an emergency supply of any needed medication and keep a copy of your prescriptions in case you run out of medication. The DOH recommends a three-month supply.
  • Don’t forget supplies for your pets.

Everyone can help prevent the spread of respiratory illness with these everyday actions.

  • Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth with unwashed hands.
  • Avoid close contact with people who are sick.
  • Stay home when you are sick.
  • Cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue, then throw the tissue in the trash.
  • Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces using a regular household cleaning spray or wipe.

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