COVID-19 Resources for Granite Staters

During the COVID-19 crisis, my staff continue to assist Granite Staters who need help dealing with federal agencies. To speak with a member of my staff call (603) 647-7500 or click here to open a case.

NH & COVID-19

New Hampshire has established a hotline for questions about the coronavirus, or COVID-19, which can be reached by dialing 2-1-1 or 1-866-444-4211. If you suspect that you are exhibiting symptoms, please call the hotline to get answers on steps you can take to protect yourself and those around you. Important Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) resources and precautions regarding COVID-19 can be accessed here.

The New Hampshire Department of Health and Human Services has set up a page containing the latest information on COVID-19 in New Hampshire, as well as further resources on the state government’s response efforts.

Granite Staters can also find more information on testing sites and options for COVID-19 testing by clicking here. 

Economic Impact Payments

The American Rescue Plan will provide direct financial support in the form of another round of Economic Impact Payments (EIP) to Americans to help them through the COVID-19 crisis.  

  • Under the American Rescue Plan,eligible taxpayers will automatically receive an Economic Impact Payment of up to $1,400 for individuals or $2,800 for married couples, plus $1,400 for each dependent. Unlike the prior rounds of Economic Impact Payments, families will get a payment for all their dependents claimed on a tax return, not just their qualifying children under 17. 

  • To check the status of your payment, you can visit https://www.irs.gov/coronavirus/get-my-payment. 

Health Care

People who are in need of health care coverage due to being laid off from the COVID-19 crisis may be eligible to obtain health insurance through a Special Enrollment Periodusing the Affordable Care Act Marketplace, which now is open until August 15th. Depending on your circumstances, you could qualify for Medicaid coverage or tax credits to reduce the cost of monthly premiums. 

People who are already enrolled in Affordable Care Act Marketplace coverage should still go to HealthCare.gov between April 1st and August 15th to see whether they are eligible for more financial support from premium tax credits to help with cost of monthly premiums. The American Rescue Plan increased the value of premium tax credits, but in order to get access to this increased assistance, current enrollees need to go on HealthCare.gov and re-certify their income and re-select their health plan.  

Paid Sick Leave

The federal requirement for certain employers to provide paid sick and family leave under the Families First Coronavirus Response Act (FFCRA) expired on December 31, 2020. The FFCRA required employers with under 500 employees to provide short-term paid leave for COVID-19 related reasons. The Act also permitted employers to seek reimbursement for any qualifying leave through tax credits. Eligible employers may voluntarily offer paid sick and family leave and take advantage of these tax credits, which were extended under the American Rescue Plan through September 30, 2021. More information on these tax credits can be found on the IRS website here. 

Protect Yourself from Scams

It’s important to stay alert and beware of scammers taking advantage of the COVID-19 Pandemic. Many scammers call claiming to be representatives of the IRS or the Social Security Administration and request personal information. Federal agencies will not request personal information over the phone and you should hang up immediately if you receive such a call. For more information on how to protect yourself and others, visit the New Hampshire Department of Justice website here or the Federal Trade Commission website here.

Private Sector Support

Vaccines 

If you represent a major industry group or company interested in supporting vaccine distribution to centers throughout the U.S., please contact the National Business Emergency Operations Center at nbeoc@max.gov  

If your industry group or company is interested in vaccine development, please go to Medical Countermeasures. 

Developing Other Medical Countermeasures 

If you would like to meet with a federal agency regarding a diagnostic, therapeutic or other medical device that you are developing for SARS-CoV-2 or COVID-19, please go to Medical Countermeasures. 

Donate Supplies and Equipment 

If you represent a business that would like to donate medical supplies, equipment or pharmaceuticals, please provide details on what you would like to give. This form is for donations only. 

Sell Supplies and Equipment 

  • If you are interested in doing business with FEMA with your company’s non-medical goods and/or services, submit your inquiry to the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) Procurement Action Innovative Response Team (PAIR) team at DHSIndustryLiaison@hq.dhs.gov. 

  • The federal government is purchasing medical supplies or equipment under through the Defense Logistics Agency (DLA). Visit the DLA website for more information. 

 

Developing Medical Countermeasures 

If you would like to meet with a federal agency regarding a vaccine, diagnostic, therapeutic or other medical device that you are developing for SARS-CoV-2 or COVID-19, please go to medicalcountermeasures.gov. 

 

Other Forms of Help 

  • If you or someone you know represent a hospital or healthcare provider in need of medical supplies, please contact your state, local, tribal or territory department of public health and/or emergency management agency. 

  • If you represent a private sector business and wish to learn more about getting involved in a way that is not listed here, please e-mail nbeoc@max.gov or visit our National Business Emergency Operations Center page. 

 

Department of Defense COVID-19 Taskforce 

The Department of Defense (DoD) has established the Joint Acquisition Task Force (JATF) for COVID-19 initiative to respond to the logistical challenges presented by the pandemic. 

They are seeking information from both government and non-government personnel who are interested in getting involved. All resources and solutions are welcome from industry, academia, Department of Defense personnel, venture capital firms, individual contributors and more. More information can be found on JTAF's website. 

Protect Your Health

Members of the public can protect themselves and those around them from COVID-19 by adopting the following practices:

  • Stay home when sick.
  • Wash hands thoroughly with soap and water in frequent intervals.
  • Avoid touching eyes, nose and mouth with unwashed hands
  • Practice social distancing – avoiding small, crowded areas such as restaurants and bars and keeping at least six to ten feet away from other people. Obey all official government social distancing rules.
  • Clean and disinfect frequently touched surfaces each day.
  • Cover coughs and sneezes.

Further guidance can be found on the website for the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Unfortunately, the uncertainty created by the COVID-19 epidemic has opened the door to misinformation and falsehoods. FEMA has created a page dispelling many of the rumors relating to COVID-19 that have been circulating.

COVID-19 has also brought about the rise of coronavirus-related scams. Granite Staters must remain vigilant against coronavirus-related scams they may receive via phone or online and should never give out any personal information to suspicious sources. For more tips and to report scams, visit the Federal Trade Commission’s page

Sexual Assault/Domestic Violence Survivors

For victims and survivors of domestic violence and sexual assault who need support, call the confidential 24/7 statewide New Hampshire hotline for domestic violence at 1-866-644-3574 and sexual assault at 1-800-277-5570.

Small Businesses

Paycheck Protection Program 

Congress recently passed an extension of the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) through May 31, 2021. Small businesses seeking to apply for a first draw or second draw PPP loan should contact their current financial institution or can use the Lender Match program through the Small Business Administration. 

 

Shuttered Venue Operators Grant 

The December 2020 Economic Aid Act established a new Shuttered Venue Operators Grant (SVOG) program through the Small Business Administration for operators of live entertainment and educational establishments such as performance venuesmuseums and movie theaters. There is $16 billion available in these new grant funds, which may be used for a variety of purposes including payroll, rent and utilities. You can learn more about this grant program here. 

 

Restaurant Revitalization Fund 

The American Rescue Plan established a new $28.6 billion Restaurant Revitalization Fund (RRF) grant program for restaurants that have struggled throughout the pandemicOnce this program is up and running, restaurants will able to apply for grants based on lost revenue. Additionally, $5 billion of the total will be set aside expressly for businesses with 2019 gross receipts of less than $500,000. Similar to the SVOG, RRF may be used for eligible expenses such as payroll, rent and supplier costs. You can learn more about this new program here once the Small Business Administration is accepting applications. 

 

Economic Injury Disaster Loan Program 

The US Small Business Administration continues to take applications for the Economic Injury Disaster Loan (EIDL) program,which provides 30 year loans at a maximum of 3.75% interest for for-profit businesses and 2.75% interest for non-profits, with deferred payments up to six months. You can apply for the EIDL program through this website. 

 

Small Business Development Centers 

The New Hampshire Small Business Development Center (SBDC) provides individualized advising and education, to NH businesses at no cost. SBDC’s team of advisors can help businesses to incorporate state and federal relief programs into comprehensive business resiliency plan as well as plan for the future. The New Hampshire SBDC can be reached through thislink. 

Student Loans

Congress passed, and the President signed into law, the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act which paused student loan payments until September 30, 2020, with interest not accumulating during this time. This payment moratorium was subsequently extended through September 30, 2021.Further information can be viewed on the Department of Education’s coronavirus resource website here. 

Housing

Congress passed, and the President signed into law, the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act, which provided for a national moratorium on evictions. That moratorium initially expired on July 24, 2020; however, since then, the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) has used its authority to extend the moratorium through June 30, 2021. In order to receive this rental protection, you must sign a sworn declaration under penalty of perjury that you satisfy certain criteria and provide that document to your landlord or property owner. A copy of that form can be found here. 

In addition to the eviction moratorium, the CARES Act, December 2020 Economic Aid Act and American Rescue Plan all included significant federal resources for rental assistance to families struggling to make rent. If you are having trouble paying your rent due to the economic consequences of the COVID-19 pandemic, learn more about the options available to you here or through your local Community Action Partnership. 

For homeowners, the CARES Act placed a moratorium on foreclosures for homeowners whose mortgages are backed by a government entity such as Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac or the Federal Housing Administration (FHA). Those moratoria initially expired on August 31, 2020; however, all agencies have extended them through June 30, 2021.If your mortgage is through the FHA,you can learn more about theforeclosure moratoriumand other possible assistance here.If your mortgage is backed by Fannie Mae or Freddie Mac (you may have to ask your mortgage servicer to find out), you can learn more about the foreclosure moratorium and other possible assistance here. 

The American Rescue Plan also included nearly $10 billion to establish a homeowner assistance fund for individuals and families struggling to pay their mortgage. Additional information about this program will be provided soon by the U.S. Department of the Treasury, and more COVID-related housing resources can be found through the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Developmentand theConsumer Financial Protection Bureau.

Traveling Abroad

Granite Staters should consult the State Department’s travel advisory page before making any travel plans. If you are stranded abroad, notify the State Department of your situation via their 24/7 hotline:

  • Callers located in the U.S. and Canada: 888-407-4747
  • Callers located overseas: 202-501-4444

Travelers abroad should also enroll in the Smart Traveler Enrollment Program to receive updates.

Unemployment Assistance

The American Rescue Plan provides supplemental Federal Unemployment Benefits of $300 per week, extending through September 6, 2021. This federal supplement is in addition to the state unemployment benefits. The number of total weeks a recipient may receive unemployment benefits has also been increased to 79 weeks. For households with an adjusted gross income of up to $150,000 in 2020, the first $10,200 of unemployment benefits will not be taxed. 

Residents, including those who are self-employed, can apply for unemployment benefits at nhes.nh.gov or call 603-271-7700. 

Veterans

Anyone who served in the military, including their caregivers and spouses, is eligible to receive a vaccine through the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA)Certain beneficiaries of those who served in the military may be eligible to receive the vaccine as well. The expansion of vaccine eligibility to all of those who served in the military was granted under the SAVE LIVES Act recently signed into law by President Biden. The expanded authority depends on readily available COVID-19 vaccine supply and requires the VA to prioritize Veterans enrolled in VA care.  

For more information about vaccine appointments please visit the Manchester VA Medical Center website here and the White River Junction VA Medical Center here.