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It’s Friday, April 17. We’ll provide the latest coronavirus updates involving Utah throughout the day.
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9 a.m.: Utah Senate to consider $80M measure to help farmers, commercial landlords and more
A major COVID-19 relief bill offering a total of $80 million in help for residents, businesses and farmers was scheduled for debate Friday in Utah Senate.
SB3006 sets up several state agencies as conduits for money being pumped into Utah’s economy under the federal $2.3 trillion Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security Act.
Utah lawmakers meeting in a special session as of Thursday adjourned their first day with the COVID-19 financial relief funding, sponsored by Sen. Lincoln Fillmore, R-South Jordan, temporarily sidetracked on the Senate calendar.
Senators were set to resume floor debate at 2 p.m. Friday.
SB3006 puts $20 million in CARES Act cash toward loans for the state’s farmers and another $40 million into rental-assistance grants to commercial landlords of small businesses, where those business owners can show their bottom lines were harmed by public measures taken to contain the virus.
The bill also steers up to $20 million from CARES toward helping state residents harmed by COVID-19 “to find and retain housing,” through the state Department of Workforce Services.
The state Department of Agriculture’s Conservation Commission will give out $20 million in zero-interest loans of up to $150,000 to farming operations harmed by outbreak-related health decrees. Those loans will be repayable over three years.
The Governor’s Office of Economic Development will oversee the one-time commercial rent-assistance grants totaling $40 million, which will be for up to $10,000 apiece and go to landlords renting to financially hit businesses with no more than 100 workers.
Those grants are scaled in size depending on the tenants’ business losses since Feb. 1 and whether they are also getting money through the Paycheck Protection Program.
8:55 a.m.: Bartenders earn tips by sharing original cocktail recipes
Holystone Distilling is helping Utah mixologists who are out of work with its #atipforatip campaign.
Owner Barbie DeShazo launched the campaign two weeks ago, inspired by the bar Cocktail Academy in Los Angeles.
“Bartenders are truly vital to our communities,” she said, “and they are like family to us.”
Bartenders can participate by sending a direct message (via social media) of an original cocktail recipe — using one of Holystone’s spirits — along with a photo of the drink and information about themselves.
8:50 a.m.: Spice Kitchen’s refugee chefs offering meal delivery
The food entrepreneurs at Salt Lake City’s Spice Kitchen Incubator — a program of the International Rescue Committee — are selling ready-to-heat multicultural meals.
All the profits will go to the refugee chefs, most of whom have been disproportionately affected by the spread of COVID-19, officials said in an email.
The community food boxes come in two sizes and price levels: small for one to two people ($80) and large for three to four people ($150).
Orders should be placed before noon on Thursday for home delivery on the following Tuesday between 4 and 6:30 p.m.
Each community food box will include entrees, sides and desserts. Both omnivore and vegetarian options are available. Boxes will change each week and feature new businesses and products. Each box also includes storage, reheating and/or cooking information.