Today, March 25th, Governor Gavin Newsom held a press conference at approximately 12:45 PM to “make a major announcement to help families during the COVID-19 outbreak.” He spoke for approximately 30 minutes, with a Q&A following. The press conference concluded at 1:42 PM.
Newsom opened the press conference by thanking Congress for the stimulus deal. He said California will receive a $10 billion block grant and additional money from other portions of the bill. Newsom further said that this federal stimulus bill "will be very helpful" as the state is trying to procure additional medical supplies and address the surge in unemployment applications. Since March 13th, one million Californians have applied for unemployment insurance.
The Governor also announced that four of the largest banks (including Wells Fargo, Citi, US Bank, JPMorgan Chase) and other financial institutions have agreed to give people a "90-day waiver of payments" on residential mortgages for those that have been impacted by COVID-19. He called this, “a big sigh of relief for millions of California families.” Newsom noted that Bank of America committed only to 30 days. When asked, Newsom said there are no income requirements with regards to the 90-day mortgage forbearance. Also, as of now, Newsom said there is not a statewide eviction moratorium nor statewide rent grace periods.
The governor was also asked about the upcoming November election and ballot initiatives specifically. In response, Newsom said only that he has been in constant communication with the Secretary of State. He specifically said that he has no new information to share as it pertains to extending the signature gathering deadline.
In terms of testing, as of today, 66,800 tests have been conducted in the state, a significant increase from yesterday. Newsom continues to urge people that individuals “take seriously” stay-at-home orders. He specifically said, "Don't think for a second that we're a day or two from lifting that order. We're not. We're not even a week or two."
Newsom provided an update on COVID-19 figures. As of 10 AM, 2,535 Californians have tested positive – a 17 percent increase from yesterday.
Also, the https://www.covid19.ca.gov/ website is being updated continuously.
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