SEVERE WX : Excessive Heat Warning View Alerts

Western States Pact asks federal government for $1 trillion in relief

Article Image

A birthday party in March was behind a cluster of coronavirus cases in Pasadena, California, according to health officials. CNN's Paul Vercammen has more.

Posted: May 11, 2020 6:51 AM
Updated: May 11, 2020 2:30 PM


The members of the Western States Pact -- California, Washington, Oregon, Colorado and Nevada -- are asking the federal government for $1 trillion in aid to help deal with the financial effects of the coronavirus pandemic.

A letter signed by all five states' governors, all Democrats, was sent to Congress on Monday, California Gov. Gavin Newsom announced in his daily coronavirus briefing.

The request by the Western states comes as House Democrats push ahead with a far-reaching Covid-19 recovery package that, among other provisions, would bail out cash-strapped states and cities and is expected to elicit sharp pushback from congressional Republicans.

In the letter, the governors thanked Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer and House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy for the 'quick financial assistance' they had already provided to workers and small businesses impacted by the virus.

'But now, however, our states will be forced to make deep cuts to programs that help those same individuals without similar relief efforts for state and local governments,' they wrote, citing potential cuts to funding for health care, teachers, first responders and job training programs without federal support.

'That's why we are respectfully, and urgently, requesting $1 trillion in direct and flexible relief to states and local governments,' the letter continues. 'Though even this amount will not replace the decline in revenue that we forecast, it will make a meaningful difference in our ability to make-up for COVID-19 revenue losses.'

The governors added, 'This aid would preserve core government services like public health, public safety, public education and help people get back to work. It would help our states and cities come out of this crisis stronger and more resilient.'

The request highlights a battle brewing on Capitol Hill over such funding. In a letter to colleagues Monday morning, Pelosi made clear her push to help states and cities, a figure she has previously floated could cost $1 trillion.

'We must act boldly to support state and local entities to address coronavirus-related outlays and lost revenue,' she told Democrats.

But the Trump administration and Senate Republicans have resisted further federal economic spending after lawmakers have injected a staggering $3 trillion in recovery programs. Senate Republicans remain divided over sending more federal aid to state and local governments after the March stimulus approved $150 billion for states and cities.

California alone is seeing record unemployment, with 4.5 million people filing claims just since March 12. The state has paid out $13.1 billion in unemployment insurance claims in that time, Newsom said Monday.

The state's unemployment rate currently stands at about 20%, but Newsom predicts it could rise to nearly 25%. Newsom said in April that his state was 'in a pandemic-induced recession' -- an indication that, while official economic bodies have not declared a recession, the state is experiencing a serious economic downturn.

The pact between West Coast states was formed last month, with California, Washington and Oregon announcing they were joining forces in a plan to begin incremental release of stay-at-home orders. Newsom said at the time that the governors of the three states would collaborate on their approach to getting back to business 'in a safe, strategic, responsible way.' Colorado and Nevada joined the group of states in late April.

California Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Confirmed Cases: 101050

Reported Deaths: 3895
CountyConfirmedDeaths
Los Angeles487612201
Riverside7139303
San Diego6882249
Orange5646136
San Bernardino4567176
Alameda304993
Santa Clara2688140
San Francisco240840
San Mateo196382
Kern194136
Tulare179679
Santa Barbara160412
Fresno153526
Contra Costa137537
Imperial135224
Sacramento131956
Ventura101732
San Joaquin77133
Kings6983
Stanislaus67028
Sonoma5244
Solano49920
Monterey4298
Marin42014
Merced2737
San Luis Obispo2631
Santa Cruz2052
Yolo20022
Placer1949
Napa1093
Humboldt982
Madera902
El Dorado800
San Benito762
Sutter422
Nevada411
Butte400
Del Norte400
Shasta374
Mono351
Yuba281
Mendocino230
Lake190
Inyo191
Mariposa161
Calaveras150
Glenn130
Amador100
Siskiyou61
Colusa50
Tuolumne40
Plumas40
Lassen40
Tehama41
Alpine20
Trinity10
Sierra10
Unassigned00
Chico
Clear
77° wxIcon
Hi: 103° Lo: 68°
Feels Like: 79°
Oroville
Clear
77° wxIcon
Hi: 104° Lo: 67°
Feels Like: 78°
Paradise
Clear
77° wxIcon
Hi: 96° Lo: 69°
Feels Like: 79°
Chester
Clear
65° wxIcon
Hi: 87° Lo: 57°
Feels Like: 65°
Red Bluff
Clear
79° wxIcon
Hi: 104° Lo: 68°
Feels Like: 80°
Willows
Clear
77° wxIcon
Hi: 107° Lo: 65°
Feels Like: 79°
Today a heat wave continues but tomorrow night rain moves in, lasting into Saturday with much cooler temperatures. We warm up again on Tuesday.
KHSL Severe
KHSL Radar
KHSL Temperatures

Community Events