COVID-19 Information for the Week of May 4, 2020
|Legislative Session Update
On May 8, the Missouri General Assembly approved the state’s operating budget for the upcoming fiscal year. The $35 billion budget funds a range of state departments and agencies, and includes full funding for the state’s public school system. Passing the budget by May 8 fulfills the Legislature’s one constitutional mandate for the legislative session. Fiscal Year 2021 begins on July 1, 2020, and runs through June 30, 2021.
State lawmakers have one week remaining in the 2020 legislative session, which is slated to end on May 15, 2020.
Update on Coronavirus in Missouri
As of May 7:
St. Louis County Update
Stay at home orders in St. Louis County remain in effect, despite the expiration of the statewide stay at home order and the activation of the economic re-opening order. The St. Louis County Department of Public Health and the St. Louis County executive’s office believe that this is necessary based on the unique challenges facing St. Louis County. It is the largest county in the state and has by far the most positive COVID-19 cases. The St. Louis county executive is working with other elected officials in the region to systematically ease restrictions. The county plans to ease restrictions to its safety order to allow some businesses to reopen beginning May 18, as long as those businesses comply with a series of social distancing requirements and disinfection processes.
Senator Nasheed believes the St. Louis County Small Business Relief (SBR) Program will provide financial relief, in the form of a one-time grant of $15,000 or less, to qualifying small businesses that were closed during the stay at home order. The grant can be used to pay for the costs incurred during the stay at home order, as well as to cover the costs associated with reopening safely. A business is eligible for an SBR grant if the business (including for-profit entities, sole proprietorships and nonprofit organizations) has its principal place of business in St. Louis County; has 50 or fewer full-time employees as of March 1, 2020; and was closed during the stay at home order.
The process for awarding SBR grants will incorporate community input to guide grants toward small businesses that need financial relief the most. SBR grants will be awarded to businesses based upon recommendations received from the St. Louis County Council and, where applicable, the mayor of the municipality where the business’ principal place of business is located. More information on SBR grants and the application process can be found here: http://stlcorona.com/resources/small-business-relief-program/.
At this time, the SBR Program will award a maximum total of $2.5 million in grants per county council district. Additional funding may be provided in the future. Additionally, no business may receive an SBR grant if the business has a director, officer, employee, agent or sub-contractor that is an elected or appointed official of St. Louis County, an elected or appointed official of any municipality within St. Louis County or is a member of the immediate family of any such elected or appointed official.
Department of Revenue Update
The Department of Revenue will begin issuing Missouri’s newly redesigned driver’s license, statewide, in June. With red, white and blue waves, the new design resembles the Missouri bicentennial license plate. The same bicentennial design will be reflected on the Missouri nondriver’s identification card and instruction permit. In addition to an updated card design, Missouri’s new driver’s license includes a series of enhanced security features. While Missouri licenses will feature a new design, please note that a previously issued Missouri driver’s license or ID card is still valid until it reaches its listed expiration date.
When applying for a new license, Missouri residents will have the option of applying for a REAL ID-compliant driver’s license or ID card. The REAL ID-compliant versions of Missouri’s new driver’s license and ID card will continue to feature a star in the upper right-hand corner. Versions of Missouri’s new driver’s licenses and ID cards that are not compliant with REAL ID will continue to have “Not for REAL ID Purposes” in the upper right-hand corner. As a reminder, the U.S. Department of Homeland Security extended the REAL ID enforcement deadline from October 1, 2020, to October 1, 2021, due to the COVID-19 health crisis. For more information about REAL ID, visit dor.mo.gov/drivers/real-id-information/.
For up-to-date information about the spread of the coronavirus in Missouri, please visit the Department of Health and Senior Services’ website at health.mo.gov or contact the department’s 24-hour hotline at 877-435-8411.