GRAND JUNCTION, Colo. — With COVID-19 cases on the rise in a number of states, lawmakers are looking towards containment and recovery and are drafting bills to help with those efforts.
KREX 5’s Caitrin Assaf sat down virtually with Sen. Cory Gardner (R-CO) to discuss two acts he is currently working on that address these issues. The TEST Act is a collaboration between Gardner and Senators Michael Bennet (D-CO), Mitt Romney (R-UT), and Kyrsten Sinema (D-AZ). If passed, this piece of legislation would “require a plan for diagnostic testing and public health system integration to better detect infectious diseases, prevent outbreaks, and avoid future economic shutdowns related to pandemics.”
In this bill, testing is key to helping better prevent hot spots, and contain any future pandemics that arise. Data from state and public health departments would be compiled to better reflect case count and potential spread. The RESTART Act, which Gardner joined Thursday, is more focused on recovery efforts post-pandemic. This bill would focus on helping small and mid-sized businesses hardest hit by the pandemic, including the hospitality industry and restaurants.
According to Sen. Gardner, this would be another approach to helping businesses in addition to the Paycheck Protection Program, and the CARES Act. More information on the TEST Act can be found here (https://www.gardner.senate.gov/newsroom/press-releases/gardner-bennet-romney-sinema-introduce-legislation-to-modernize-disease-detection-to-help-stimulate-economy-.
More on the RESTART Act can be found here (https://www.gardner.senate.gov/newsroom/press-releases/gardner-joins-restart-act-to-support-hardest-hit-small-and-mid-sized-businesses.