IowaBio wants to provide our members useful information during the COVID-19 pandemic. This newsletter compiles information on state, federal and industry action to combat the virus and its impacts.
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Past IowaBio COVID-19 Update newsletters are now available at www.iowabio.org/COVID19 and can be found under the Industry News tab on the IowaBio website.
Federal Legislation Supplemental V – The American Rescue Plan Timeline: After a record-setting vote-a-rama, the Senate passed the American Rescue Plan 50-49 on Saturday afternoon. The vote was split by party line and Sen. Sullivan (R-AK) was absent. The House plans to vote on the bill this evening or “at the latest on Wednesday”, according to Speaker Pelosi. The hope remains to have President Biden sign the bill into law before expanded unemployment benefits expire this coming Sunday.
Process/Politics: It was a fun weekend for the Senate. Senate Democrats originally planned to begin the 20 hours of debate on the bill after Majority Leader offered a substitute amendment with the changes to the bill. However, Sen. Johnson (R-WI) objected to bypassing the reading of the amendment aloud, a process usually skipped in the Senate. The clerks then read the entire 648-page amendment aloud and finished doing so 11 hours later, at 2:05 a.m. on Friday morning. However, Sen. Van Hollen (D-MD) proposed limiting debate from the mandated 20 hours to three. When no Republicans, including Sen. Johnson who was on the floor, objected, the Senate recessed to begin business later that morning.
However, Friday posed another late night for the Senate. On the first vote of vote-a-rama Friday morning,we saw nearly 12-hour standstill. The vote itself was on an amendment from Sen. Sanders and would have raised the federal minimum wage to $15 an hour, but eight Democrats voted no; However, the delay was caused by Sen. Joe Manchin (D-WV) attempting to negotiate unemployment insurance provisions. Democrats had planned to offer an amendment, from Sen. Carper, which would cut the federal unemployment benefit from $400 to $300 per week but extend it through September and make the first $10,200 of it non-taxable. Sen. Manchin, however, indicated he may be more inclined to support an amendment from Sen. Portman, which would cut the unemployment benefit to $300 per week and cut it off on July 18. If Sen. Manchin supported the Portman amendment over Carper's, the bill likely would not have been able to re-pass the House. After hours of uncertainty, Sen. Manchin and other Democrats, including the White House, reached a deal where tax deductibility of UI would be only available to those under a certain income and UI benefits would be a couple weeks shorter than the original Carper amendment. The Portman amendment did pass, but it was overruled by a later amendment that contained this deal. Eleven hours and fifty minutes after the first vote had begun, it finally closed. The Senate then proceeded to vote on nearly 40 amendments, with seven amendments passing. The bill finally passed at just after noon on Saturday.
Policy: It’s expected that the House passes the bill with no changes, as changes this late in the game will threaten passing the bill within the March 14 UI deadline. Senate text, though unclear if it is final text, here. Summary (from Sen. Sanders’s office, as of March 3) here. Summary of the Senate changes here, one-pager on changes here. Highlights of Senate changes to the bill below:
Extends the Employee Retention Tax Credit (ERTC) through 12/31/21, adopts the expansions from the December Omnibus, and codifies the ERTC by adding it to the Internal Revenue Code as § 3134. The December 2020 Omni made a handful of expansions to the original CARES ERTC including: increased the credit percentage from 50 to 70; increased the maximum credit from $10k per employee to $10k per quarter per employee; extended the credit from 12/31/20 through 6/31/21; and, loosened the gross receipts test from 50 percent (relative to 2019) to 80 percent (relative to 2019).
$10 billion Critical Infrastructure Project program aimed at assisting state, territorial, and tribal governments with COVID-19 response. Also establishes a requirement that small states receive at least the amount they received under the CARES Act’s Coronavirus Relief Fund.
Makes higher educational debt forgiveness tax-free on loans discharged between 12/31/20 and 12/31/25. This will apply to any governmental debt relief during that time period but is also generally drafted to apply to debts discharged by higher educational institutions.
$8.5 billion for Provider Relief Fund for rural providers.
Boost to COBRA premium assistance from 85 to 100 percent.
Allows eligible entities under Save Our Stages program to receive both a PPP loan and Shuttered Venue Operators Grant.
$5.5 billion for school programs, including summer school and afterschool programs and technology.
The National Association of Counties analysis of the Senate bill and calculations for per-county allocations. Analysis here and calculations found by clicking “Summary of Local Funding in Senate Substitute”.
House-passed text here. House Committee summaries of House version of the bill below:
Ways and Means: press release here (with links to text and section by section summaries), Joint Committee on Taxation summary here
Energy and Commerce: more details specific to health response funding are here, section by section in the committee memo here, public health text here, Medicaid section text here, CHIP section text here, other provisions text here
Oversight and Reform: one pager here, committee print here
Education and Labor: press release here, fact sheet here, section by section here, text here
Veterans Affairs: text here, section by section here
Members of Congress Affected by COVID-19
New additions in bold. As of January 15, the below list only includes members of the 117th Congress and thus is not cumulative across Congresses. Members of Congress began receiving COVID-19 vaccines in December, 2020. Tested Positive Recently (0): Died from COVID-19 (1): Rep. Ron Wright (R-TX) Recovered from COVID-19 (68): Rep. Mario Diaz-Balart (R-FL), Sen. Rand Paul (R-KY), Rep. Mike Kelly (R-PA), Rep. Nydia Velazquez (D-NY), Rep. Neal Dunn (R-FL), Rep. Tom Rice (R-SC), Rep. Morgan Griffith (R-VA), Rep. Louie Gohmert (R-TX), Rep. Raúl Grijalva (D-AZ), Rep. Rodney Davis (R-IL), Sen. Bill Cassidy (R-LA), Rep. Dan Meuser (R-PA), Rep. Jenniffer Gonzalez-Colon (R-Puerto Rico at large), Rep. Jahana Hayes (D-CT), Sen. Mike Lee (R-UT), Sen. Thom Tillis (R-NC), Sen. Ron Johnson (R-WI), Rep. Salud Carbajal (D-CA), Rep. Mike Bost (R-IL), Rep. Bill Huizenga (R-MI), Rep. Drew Ferguson (R-GA), Rep. Don Young (R-AK), Sen. Rick Scott (R-FL), Rep. Tim Walberg (R-MI), Rep. Cheri Bustos (D-IL), Sen. Chuck Grassley (R-IA), Rep. Ed Perlmutter (D-CO), Rep. Dan Newhouse (R-WA), Rep. Doug Lamborn (R-CO), Rep. Brian Steil (R-WI), Rep. Joe Courtney (D-CT), Rep. Virginia Foxx (R-TX), Rep. Rep. Susie Lee (D-NV), Rep. Austin Scott (R-GA), Rep. Ted Budd (R-NC), Rep. Robert Aderholt (R-AL), Rep. Ken Calvert R-CA), Rep. Barry Loudermilk (R-GA), Rep. Devin Nunes (R-CA), Rep. Joe Wilson (R-SC), Rep. Mike Rogers (R-AL), Rep. Rick Larsen (D-WA), Rep. Gwen Moore (D-WI), Rep. Maria Salazar (R-FL), Rep. Kay Granger (R-TX), Rep. Kevin Brady (R-TX), Rep. Michelle Steel (R-CA), Rep. Gus Bilirakis (R-FL), Rep. Jake LaTurner (R-KS), Rep. Chuck Fleischmann (R-TN), Rep. Bonnie Watson Coleman (D-NJ), Rep. Pramila Jayapal (D-WA), Rep. Brad Schneider (D-IL), Rep. Adriano Espaillat (D-NY), Rep. Lou Correa (D-CA), Rep. Raul Ruiz (D-CA), Rep. Stephen Lynch (D-MA), Rep. Lori Trahan (D-MA) Currently Self-Quarantined (0): Completed Quarantine (52): Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX), Sen. Lindsay Graham (R-SC), Rep. Don Beyer (D-VA), Rep. Sharice Davids (D-KS), Rep. Paul Gosar (R-AZ), Rep. Matt Gaetz (R-FL), Rep. Jason Crow (D-CO), Rep. Julia Brownley (D-CA), Sen. Ben Ray Luján (D-NM), Rep. Stephanie Murphy (D-FL), Rep. John Yarmuth (D-KY), Rep. Adam Schiff (D-CA), Rep. Vincente Gonzalez (D-TX), Rep. David Schweikert (R-AZ), Rep. Anthony Brindisi (D-NY), Rep. David Price (D-NC), Rep. Ann Wagner (R-MO), Rep. Kathleen Rice (D-NY), Rep. Matt Cartwright (D-PA), Rep. Tom Cole (R-OK), Rep. Steve Scalise (R-LA), Rep. Frederica Wilson (D-FL), Rep. Andy Kim (D-NJ), Sen. Mike Lee (R-UT), Sen. Mitt Romney (R-UT), Rep. Katie Porter (D-CA), Rep. Seth Moulton (D-MA), Rep. Lizzie Fletcher (D-TX), Rep. Josh Gottheimer (D-NJ), Rep. Ayanna Pressley (D-MA), Rep. Mikie Sherrill (D-NJ), Rep. Randy Weber (R-TX), Rep. Mike Johnson (R-LA), Rep. Jody Hice (R-GA), Rep. Guy Reschenthaler (R-PA), Sen. Shelley Moore Capito (R-WV), Rep. Lisa Blunt Rochester (D-DE), Sen. Ben Sasse (R-NE), Sen. James Lankford (R-OK), Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX), Rep. Mark Pocan (D-WI), Rep. Anna Eshoo (D-CA), Rep. Carolyn Maloney (D-NY), Sen. Mark Warner (D-VA)
Key Statistics Iowa
The overall number of vaccines administered is 902,070 an increase of 9,255 since yesterday, with 328,847 receiving their first dose of the Pfizer or Moderna vaccine and 286,590 receiving their second dose. To find vaccine providers in your county, click here or scroll to the bottom of the vaccine dashboard. If you need a vaccine appointment, vaccinate.iowa.gov has launched to help connect Iowans eligible for the vaccine with providers. For vaccine eligibility information and timelines click here.
Currently, on the state’s coronavirus dashboard 367,788 positive tests were reported, up 634 from our update yesterday morning, with a total of 4,167,018 tests.
1 additional death was reported since our last update, bringing the total to 5,559 deaths.
The total 14 day rolling average positivity rate is 4.1% the past 7-day average is 4.1%.
The latest on hospitalizations, can be found here. There are currently 179 hospitalized patients—up 11 since yesterday-- with 33 in the ICU, and 28 admitted in the last 24 hours.
Total Cases 28,813,434
Total Deaths 522,973
Total Vaccination Doses Administered 90,351,750
Total Cases 116,907,508
Total Deaths 2,594,721