As Virginians continue to follow the recommendations and guidelines of public health experts, Virginians and constituents in the 41st District can find updates and resources below.
Please take care of yourselves, practice social distancing and wear face coverings during these challenging times. I continue to wish you, your family and friends good health.
Speaker Eileen Filler-Corn
The Commonwealth has expanded the Virginia Rent and Mortgage Relief Program (RMRP) to further assist Virginians with past-due rental payments dating back to April 1st, 2020. Now, landlords can apply for the RMRP financial assistance on behalf of their qualifying tenants.
Launched in June 2020, the RMRP made $50 million in short-term financial assistance available to Virginians in the form of rent and mortgage payments to low-income households facing eviction.
To find out if you are eligible for assistance and to locate an administration offce visit dhcd.virginia.gov/eligibility or dial 2-1-1.
I also wanted to remind you of the Commonwealth’s “Stay Home Virginia” website, which is a consolidation of many useful tools, helpful information, and resources for renters, homeowners, landlords, and those experiencing homelessness. The website also outlines summaries of both the federal and state protections in place.
$4 Million Dedicated to Eviction Diversion
The Commonwealth, in coordination with IKEA, announced $4 Million in funding for Legal Aid attorneys focused on housing security for many Virginians during this unprecedented public health crisis. This critical funding will support vital eviction diversion programming for Virginians across Virginia. Click here for more info.
Utility Shutoff Moratorium
The SCC has extended the current moratorium on utility shutoffs until October 5th, as the General Assembly works to provide relief to Virginians. This moratorium is in addition to the SCC’s direction for all utilities to offer extended payment plans of up to 12 months for customers. Click here for more info.
Fairfax County Public Schools
To ensure continuity of services for students and families, FCPS has expanded grab-and-go food distribution to more than 34 FCPS sites. All students enrolled in FCPS schools and other County children 18 years of age and under receive one meal at no-cost; and, may have additional meals at no-cost upon request. Effective Tuesday, March 24th, the grab and go meals will be available from 9:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m. Breakfast and lunch are available at the same time.
Additionally, FCPS buses are delivering grab and go meals along some bus routes. School buses will stop at designated locations for delivery.
You may click here for a full map of FCPS grab and go locations, community meal distribution sites, food pantries, and other related services in and around the 41st District.
FCPS Resources for Students with Disabilities
Fairfax County Public Schools has assembled a resource page for students who are involved with special education programs or related services.
For more information and guidance from the Virginia Department of Education, you may click here.
VSHL 2020-2021 Seasons
Yesterday, the Virginia High School League’s Executive Committee voted to implement a condensed schedule for the 2020-2021 school year. This means there will be no sports until at least December 14th, 2020, with the first games starting on December 28th, 2020.
The new seasons will consist of:
- Winter sports running from Dec. 14-Feb. 20, with the first contest date on Dec. 28;
- Fall sports running from Feb. 15-May 1, with the first contest date on March 1;
- Spring sports running from April 12-June 26, with the first contest date on April 26.
However, this plan is subject to changes based on public health data and any changes to safety guidelines.
More information is available at the VHSL’s website.
Fairfax County Resources
Fairfax County COVID-19 Dashboard
The Fairfax County Department of Health has established a COVID-19 data dashboard, which displays up-to-date case information in the Fairfax Health District. The dashboard features maps and graphic displays organized by locality, combined ZIP codes, race and ethnicity, as well as age. It also features a case trajectory and curve of new cases. Click here to view the dashboard.
DMV has opened a number of locations with limited services available by appointment only. Click here to view precautionary measures the DMV is taking to protect the health of those seeking critical in-person services.
To accommodate social distancing and minimize volume, appointments will be required and available for select services. If customers can conduct their transaction online or by mail, they should continue to do so.
Appointments can be made by visiting www.dmvNOW.com/appt or by calling 804-497-7100.
Filling out your census form only takes about 10 minutes, and determines your community’s state, local and federal funding and representation for the next 10 years! While census takers will not be going door-to-door, for the first time ever, individuals are able to complete census forms online here, as well as via phone or by mail. Be sure to complete your form – everyone counts!
Ways to Help
- Consider donating blood if you are healthy and able. Currently, there is a severe blood shortage nationally. Appointments to give blood with INOVA can be made at INOVAblood.org.
- Please consider joining me and my colleagues in the General Assembly from Fairfax Co. in contributing to the Capital Area Food Bank and Food for Others.
- Ecumenical Community Helping Others (ECHO) serve individuals and families experiencing effects of long-term poverty and emergency financial need in Burke and Springfield
Mental Health Resources & Emergency Numbers
- If you are in crisis, text NEEDHELP to 85511, call 1-800-273-TALK, or dial 911; TTY dial 711
- CrisisLink Regional Hotline: 703-527-4077
- Dominion Hospital Assessment and Referral Line: 703-536-2000
- Mobile Crisis Unit: 1-844-627-4747
- National Suicide Prevention Lifeline: 1-800-273-TALK or 1-800-SUICIDE
- Merrifield Center Emergency Services: 703-573-5679; TTY dial 711
- Plan D Nova https://www.plandnova.org/
- Fairfax County’s 24-Hour Domestic Violence Hotline: 703-360-7273
- Domestic Violence Action Center: 703-246-4573
Virginia COPES Non-Emergency Support Line
The Virginia Department of Behavioral Health and Developmental Services (DBHDS), in coordination with Mental Health America of Virginia, has established a COVID-19 Non-Emergency “Warm Line”. If you or someone you know are struggling with trauma or distress caused by COVID-19, trained staff are available to provide strength-based support, resilience coaching, community resources and direction for those in need.
You can find more info on Virginia COPES and other resources here and below.
Call or TEXT Toll Free: 877-349-6428
9 a.m. – 9 p.m. Monday – Friday
5 p.m. – 9 p.m. Saturday – Sunday
Rebuild VA Economic Recovery Fund
Governor Northam has announced that $70 Million is available for small businesses and nonprofit organizations through the Rebuild VA economic recovery fund. Grants of up to $10,000 will be made to around 7,000 small businesses and nonprofits that are in good standing, have annual gross revenues of no more than $1.5 million, and have no more than 25 employees.
The Department of Small Business and Supplier Diversity (SBSD) will administer the funding and will hold webinars to review details when applications open on August 10th.
Face Coverings in Public Indoor Settings
Last week, Governor Northam signed Executive Order 63, which requires Virginians to wear face coverings in public indoor settings and directs the Department of Labor and Industry (DOLI) to develop temporary standards to prevent exposure to COVID-19 in workplace settings. This order is now in effect until amended or rescinded.
Exemptions to these guidelines include:
- individuals actively eating and drinking at a food and beverage establishment;
- individuals who are exercising;
- children under the age of two;
- a person seeking to communicate with a hearing-impaired person, for which the mouth needs to be visible;
- and anyone with a health condition that keeps them from wearing a face covering.
Click here to read the full text of Executive Order 63.
Click here to read the Governor’s Press Release on Executive Order 63.
Support for Workers
As we take precautionary measures across the Commonwealth, the Virginia Employment Commission (VEC) will waive the waiting period to ensure workers can receive benefits ASAP. Workers may be eligible to receive unemployment benefits if an employer needs to slow or cease operations due to COVID-19 or if they have been issued a notice to self-quarantine by a medical or public health official and are not receiving paid sick or medical leave from their employer. You may click here or more info on how to file a claim.
In addition, a worker may be eligible for unemployment benefits if they must stay home to care for an ill family member and are not receiving paid family medical leave from their employer. For individuals receiving unemployment insurance, the VEC will give affected workers special consideration on deadlines, mandatory re-employment appointments, and work search requirements.
VDEM COVID-19 Materials
The Virginia Department of Emergency Management has established a web page of COVID-related materials, located here. Available resources include waivers, memoranda and guidance; available disaster grants and loan programs; along with instructions for private sector partners seeking to provide COVID-19 containment support to the Commonwealth.
SNAP Benefits Expanded to Include Online Orders
Virginians who receive Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) benefits will now able to pay for their groceries online and have them delivered. This is after the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) approved Virginia to participate in an innovative online purchasing pilot program – the first time such a program has been available.
Online shopping access is available through the Amazon and Walmart’s online platforms. Transactions will take place using SNAP customers’ secure Personal Identification Numbers (PINs). SNAP benefits cannot be used to pay for fees of any type, such as delivery, service, or convenience fees.
Click here to read the Governor’s full press release on the expansion.
Updated 9/16/2020 9:11 AM