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Coons highlights need to fund state, local governments

Delaware News Desk
Smyrna/Clayton Sun-Times
Smyrna/Clayton Sun-Times

Sen. Chris Coons joined Fox News’ “America’s Newsroom” April 23 to discuss the COVID-19 response.

Coons highlighted the need to support state and local governments and expand national service to help reopen the economy amid the COVID-19 pandemic.

“[F]or us to continue to provide services — whether it's garbage collection or it’s pandemic health services in support, whether it's keeping the unemployment offices open, or it’s providing police and firefighters — continuing to provide those key government services is also going to take some federal support,” said Coons. “We put restrictions on the money that went to some of the largest companies. I understand our putting some restrictions on money that would go to state and local governments, but frankly if we don't, because of the balanced budget requirements of virtually every government, and I used to run a county government, we’ll see massive layoffs in the public sector.”

“We will need to provide more support for businesses so they can reopen for contact tracing and testing,” Coons said on his effort to expand national service to respond to the COVID-19 crisis. “One of the things I've been talking with Republicans and Democrats in the House and Senate about is our existing national service program, AmeriCorps, which has 75,000 young people in every state who were midway through their service year. We need to have somewhere between [100,000] and 300,000 people in every state doing contact tracing so we can safely reopen. We need to figure out how we get those folks up and running in every state in the country.”

Video and audio are available at bit.ly/3aw0xlI.