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“Hurricane season is here, so we have to be vigilant in protecting Louisiana properties from flood damage. This grant will help preserve housing for people who call Acadia Parish home.”

MADISONVILLE, La. – Sen. John Kennedy (R-La.), a member of the Senate Appropriations Committee, today announced a $1,743,685 FEMA grant to support a residential elevation project in Acadia Parish. 

“Hurricane season is here, so we have to be vigilant in protecting Louisiana properties from flood damage. This grant will help preserve housing for people who call Acadia Parish home,” said Kennedy.

This funding is authorized by the National Flood Insurance Act. As required by FEMA and local ordinance, structures that have received repetitive flood damage will be elevated one foot above the base flood elevation.

“Louisiana is working each day to promote the health of families and children, and this funding will help support key programs to protect the well-being of our communities.”

MADISONVILLE, La. – Sen. John Kennedy (R-La.), a member of the Senate Appropriations Committee, today announced $2,985,578 in federal funding to support health projects around Louisiana. 

“Louisiana is working each day to promote the health of families and children, and this funding will help support key programs to protect the well-being of our communities,” said Kennedy.

Projects supported by this funding include:

  • $2,609,141 from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention to support the Epidemiology and Laboratory Capacity for Prevention and Control of Emerging Infectious Diseases. The grant is awarded to the Louisiana Department of Health.
  • $376,437 from the National Institute of General Medical Sciences to support genetic research through Tulane University.

“It’s imperative that we continue to care for, and ensure the safety of, our children and their families during this pandemic. This funding will help reimburse DCFS for its response to the coronavirus.” 

MADISONVILLE, La. – Sen. John Kennedy (R-La.), a member of the Senate Appropriations Committee, today announced a $1,153,375 FEMA grant to reimburse the Louisiana Department of Children and Family Services (DCFS) for the cost of emergency management responsibilities during the coronavirus outbreak.

“It’s imperative that we continue to care for, and ensure the safety of, our children and their families during this pandemic. This funding will help reimburse DCFS for its response to the coronavirus,” said Kennedy.

DCFS’s emergency management responsibilities include providing staff liaisons to the Louisiana Office of Homeland Security, managing its emergency operation center and operating warehouses for medical monitoring and coronavirus isolation sites. This funding is authorized under the Robert T. Stafford Act.

“President Trump has always made certain that Louisiana gets the resources we need to fight COVID-19. We’re thankful for this supply of remdesivir and for the lives it will help.”

MADISONVILLE, La. – Sen. John Kennedy (R-La.) released the following statement on President Donald Trump’s securing a shipment of the coronavirus therapeutic remdesivir to help treat patients in Louisiana.

“President Trump has always made certain that Louisiana gets the resources we need to fight COVID-19. We’re thankful for this supply of remdesivir and for the lives it will help,” said Kennedy.

On July 13, Louisiana will receive 60 cases of remdesivir, which the U.S. Food and Drug Administration has given emergency use authorization for treating hospitalized coronavirus patients.

“Louisiana’s health and education systems are working each day to adapt to the coronavirus outbreak, and these grants will help support key programs and services to help Louisianians build healthy futures.” 

MADISONVILLE, La. – Sen. John Kennedy (R-La.), a member of the Senate Appropriations Committee, today announced $57,834,112 in federal funding to help support health and education projects around Louisiana.

“Louisiana’s health and education systems are working each day to adapt to the coronavirus outbreak, and these grants will help support key programs and services to help Louisianians build healthy futures,” said Kennedy.

Projects supported by this funding include:

  • $51,033,433 from FEMA to help reimburse Ochsner Medical Center for completing construction of its west tower facility in Jefferson Parish to increase capacity for coronavirus patients.
  • $3,021,520 from the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) to help support maternal and child health services through the Louisiana Department of Health.
  • $1,584,468 from HHS to help support the Head Start and Early Head Start programs through Total Community Action, Inc.
  • $930,680 from HHS to help support The Juvenile Justice-Involved Youth Innovation and Impact Network through the Policy and Research Group.
  • $700,000 from HHS to help support the Louisiana Zero Suicide Initiative through the Louisiana State Office of Behavioral Health.
  • $318,967 from HHS to help support tubular lysosomes in health and disease research at Louisiana State University A&M.
  • $130,592 from HHS to help expand capacity for coronavirus testing through Acadiana Cares, Inc.
  • $114,452 from HHS to help expand capacity for coronavirus testing through Greater Ouachita Coalition Providing Aids Resources & Education, Inc.

“Expanding testing helps people in Baton Rouge return to their jobs while keeping communities safe. I’m grateful HHS is providing additional support for communities hit hardest by this virus.”

MADISONVILLE, La. – Sen. John Kennedy (R-La.), a member of the Senate Appropriations Committee, today announced the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) will support increased free coronavirus testing in Baton Rouge, La.

“Expanding testing helps people in Baton Rouge return to their jobs while keeping communities safe. I’m grateful HHS is providing additional support for communities hit hardest by this virus,” said Kennedy.

HHS will increase testing in communities experiencing a recent and excessive number of new cases and hospitalizations related to the coronavirus outbreak. Beginning on Tuesday, July 7, HHS will help perform 5,000 free tests a day in Baton Rouge through Saturday, July 18.

According to HHS, testing locations in Baton Rouge include:

 

Louisiana State University

Alex Box Stadium parking lot

Gourrier Avenue

Baton Rouge, LA 70820

 

Southern University

FG Clark parking lot

801 Harding Blvd

Baton Rouge, LA 70807

 

Cortana Mall

9701 Cortana Pl.

Baton Rouge, LA 70815

 

Fairgrounds at BREC’s Airline Highway Park

17200 Airline Hwy

Baton Rouge, LA 70118

“Health care professionals around Louisiana took unprecedented steps to mitigate the coronavirus pandemic, and this HHS funding will help our hospitals continue to prepare for public health emergencies.”

WASHINGTON – Sen. John Kennedy (R-La.), a member of the Senate Appropriations Committee, today announced $11,060,438 in funding from the Department of Health and Human Services to help the Louisiana Department of Health prepare for public health emergencies.

“Health care professionals around Louisiana took unprecedented steps to mitigate the coronavirus pandemic, and this HHS funding will help our hospitals continue to prepare for public health emergencies,” said Kennedy.

Projects supported by this funding include:

  • $9,100,321 to the Louisiana Department of Health for the Louisiana Public Health Emergency Preparedness and Response Program.
  • $1,960,117 to the Louisiana Department of Health for the Louisiana Hospital Preparedness Program.

“The Paycheck Protection Program helped countless small businesses keep their doors open and their workers on payroll. . . . I’m glad to work with Sen. King on getting those businesses another tool to help them focus on their core business instead of worrying about bureaucratic landmines.”

WASHINGTON – Today, Sens. John Kennedy (R-La.) and Angus King (I-Maine) introduced the Calculate PPP Forgiveness Act of 2020, which directs the Small Business Administration (SBA) to develop a free calculator for businesses seeking to estimate their loan forgiveness amount through the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP). The bill directs the SBA to coordinate the development of the calculator, providing additional support for small businesses that are navigating a complex web of challenges.

“The Paycheck Protection Program helped countless small businesses keep their doors open and their workers on payroll,” said Kennedy. “Now, they need support to navigate the loan forgiveness process so they can continue helping our economy recover. I’m glad to work with Sen. King on getting those businesses another tool to help them focus on their core business instead of worrying about bureaucratic landmines.”

“Each day of the coronavirus crisis, businesses are facing a million different challenges – making payroll, covering rent and utilities, maintaining the health of their employees and customers, on and on. By providing a free calculator of PPP loan forgiveness, we give them a little more clarity when it comes to planning their expenses,” said King. “This bill will provide peace of mind to businesses who’ve utilized the PPP to stay afloat, and will help them avoid harmful financial surprises. This is an important step to making sure the local businesses we love are able to weather this storm and keep playing vital roles in our communities.”

The Calculate PPP Loan Forgiveness Act would require the Administrator of the SBA, in coordination with the Secretary of the Treasury, to establish a free, publicly accessible online calculator and/or certify free, accurate and publicly accessible third-party calculators in order to provide certainty and assistance to lenders and small businesses as they fill out PPP loan forgiveness forms.

As a member of the Senate Small Business Committee, a member of the Senate Banking Committee and the chair of the Financial Services and General Government Subcommittee on Appropriations, Kennedy worked closely with the U.S. Treasury and SBA on implementing the PPP. Kennedy called for additional PPP funding after the program initially ran out of funds in April. At the Small Business Committee hearing on June 10, Kennedy pressed SBA Administrator Carranza and Treasury Secretary Mnuchin to provide certainty and clarity about the PPP forgiveness process. On June 12, Kennedy asked the Treasury and SBA to simplify the PPP loan forgiveness application. When it was reported that dozens of Planned Parenthood affiliates across the country applied for and received about $80 million in PPP loans, while knowing they were ineligible to apply, Kennedy asked the Justice Department to investigate the misuse of funds set aside for small businesses and their employees.

King has pushed to make sure federal funds are being directed to the sectors of our society that need them most as quickly and efficiently as possible – earlier this month, his legislation extending the length of time businesses could use funds and allowing businesses to use more of their loans on non-payroll expenses passed the Senate unanimously and was signed into law. In addition to his leadership in reforming the PPP’s timeline and providing increased flexibility for business owners, King has pushed to ease paperwork requirements for small businesses seeking loan forgiveness under the PPP. He has also urged the SBA to provide clear, concise and accurate guidance on eligibility for Economic Injury Disaster Loans and to readjust regulatory requirements so that seasonal employers can access the full amount of the PPP loans for which they qualify. He has cosponsored legislation that would repeal a massive tax break for a small group of wealthy taxpayers that was included in the CARES Act. Since the coronavirus crisis began, he has remained in regular contact with Maine business leaders, including tele-conferences with the Maine State Chamber of CommercePortland Buy LocalPenobscot Bay Regional Chamber of CommerceNew England Council and 500 Maine employees of Sun Life.

 

“Apprenticeships equip workers with skills and experience to excel in today’s workforce, and this funding will give Louisiana workers the chance to build meaningful careers that enrich their communities.” 

WASHINGTON – Sen. John Kennedy (R-La.), a member of the Senate Appropriations Committee, today announced $3,450,000 in federal grants from the Department of Labor to help the Louisiana Workforce Commission expand its Registered Apprenticeship Program. 

“Apprenticeships equip workers with skills and experience to excel in today’s workforce, and this funding will give Louisiana workers the chance to build meaningful careers that enrich their communities,” said Kennedy.

These grants are administered through a two-tiered funding system that encourages states to improve employer engagement and positive outcomes for their respective Registered Apprenticeship Programs. Louisiana is one of only 12 states receiving funds under the second funding tier.

“Every so often, Washington actually saves taxpayer dollars instead of watching that money circle the bureaucratic drain. Today, the Senate made the commonsense move to pass the Stopping Improper Payments to Deceased People Act . . . I hope the House quickly sends this bipartisan solution to the president’s desk.”

WASHINGTON – Today the Senate passed the Stopping Improper Payments to Deceased People Act, which Sens. John Kennedy (R-La.) and Tom Carper (D-Del.) introduced in May 2019. The bill would save billions of federal taxpayer dollars by curbing erroneous government payments to people who are deceased.

Last week, the U.S. Government Accountability Office reported that the U.S. Treasury sent more than 1 million coronavirus stimulus payments—worth approximately $1.4 billion—to dead people.

“Every so often, Washington actually saves taxpayer dollars instead of watching that money circle the bureaucratic drain. Today, the Senate made the commonsense move to pass the Stopping Improper Payments to Deceased People Act, and I’m thankful for Sen. Carper’s leadership in helping our bill cross the finish line. I’m also grateful for the work Finance Committee Chairman Grassley did to save billions in taxpayer money from flowing to ghosts. Americans need those resources to save and improve lives, and I hope the House quickly sends this bipartisan solution to the president’s desk,” said Kennedy.

Background: 

The Social Security Administration (SSA) maintains the most complete federal database of individuals who are reported to have died. However, only a small number of federal agencies have access to this official list, and most federal agencies rely on a slimmed down, incomplete and less timely version of the death information. 

In addition, most inspectors general lack access to the complete death information. As a result, many federal agencies make erroneous payments to people who are actually deceased.

The Stopping Improper Payments to Deceased People Act has several key provisions, including:

  • Allowing federal agencies access to the complete death database. Under current law, only federal agencies that directly manage programs making beneficiary payments have access to complete death data. The bill would allow all appropriate federal agencies to have access to the complete record of death data in order to promote public safety and accuracy in distributing benefits.
  • Requiring agencies to use death data to curb improper payments. The legislation would require federal agencies to use this death data in order to curb improper payments and reduce waste and fraud that occur when agencies send taxpayer money to people who are no longer living.
  • Improving the death data. The legislation would establish procedures to ensure more accurate death data. For example, the bill requires the SSA to screen for “extremely elderly” individuals, as a 2015 Inspector General Report identified 6.5 million people who were listed as living despite the fact that they were all recorded as being more than 112 years old.