Message from Mayor Nate Fontaine’s Friday Email, April 3, 2020:
There have been many virtual meetings this week between myself, staff, the Board of Supervisors and even a White House meeting. Below are the highlights from this week’s discussions.
Modeling (which changes regularly with updates) is currently showing that the curve of infection is slowing. This has led health officials to say that the peak of number of infected individuals will be within the next two weeks. That projection can only hold true if we continue to following the guidelines in the 30 Days to Slow the Spread from the White House Coronavirus Task Force. In order to keep the decline in the number of infections, even if you are young and otherwise healthy, we must all acknowledge we are at risk of contracting and infecting others. To quote Ambassador Deborah Birx, “There’s no magic bullet. There’s no magic vaccine or therapy. It’s just behaviors. Each of our behaviors translating into something that changes the course of this viral pandemic over the next 30 days.”
As we navigate through this pandemic, we have all seen that rumors can easily circulate. FEMA is working to help us all distinguish between rumors and facts regarding the response to the coronavirus pandemic.
Updates on the CARES Act which provides American families, healthcare workers, and small businesses with economic support can be found through the U.S. Department of the Treasury website, which has up-to-date guidance on the $2.2 trillion economic relief package. This package includes the $1,200 tax free payments to residents, as well as additional support for State and local governments. Most of the programs for local governments are set up for municipalities of 500,000 residents, or larger, but we will be working with Loudoun County on any additional funds available to the Town for economic support.
For Small Business and Unemployment Assistance:
- The Internal Revenue Service has up-to-date guidance to help taxpayers, businesses and others affected by the coronavirus.
- The Small Business Administration is offering low interest federal disaster loans for working capital to small businesses and private, non-profit organizations in all U.S. States and territories.
- The CARES Act’s Paycheck Protection Program authorizes up to $349 billion for small businesses to be applied towards job retention and certain other expenses. Small businesses and eligible non-profit organizations, Veterans organizations, and Tribal businesses described in the Small Business Act, as well as individuals who are self-employed or are independent contractors, are eligible if they also meet program size standards. The Treasury Department has provided a wealth of information on this. Here is a link to an overview and here is information for borrowers.
In light of the recent extensions on timelines, and the Governors Stay At Home Order, we are coordinating individual meetings with the brick and mortar businesses in Town, the Town Manager, and myself. These meetings will be to check in and see what support they need and gather their recommendations. We will also be working on a coordination effort with all registered businesses, in the coming week. We will then use that information within the Commerce and Business Development Committee to recommend actions to the Town Council in a future meeting.
The Town’s elected officials and staff are closely monitoring the Coronavirus (COVID-19) situation. The best sources of information are the Loudoun County Health and Human Services website, Virginia Department of Health, and the Centers for Disease Control. Some of these sites allow you to sign up for alerts to follow along as new information is published.
I know the speed of current events can feel overwhelming, but education and communication truly are our best tools against COVID-19. Each of us can help reduce exposure:
- Refrain from shaking hands
- Practice social distancing
- Wash your hands for at least 20 seconds
- Practice proper sneeze and cough etiquette
Even if you are not in a high-risk group, your good habits help protect others. Please do not be afraid to report flu-like symptoms, especially those related to travel or direct contact with a confirmed COVID-19 case.
In closing, please remember that there are many impacts of a global pandemic. Not all of them must deal with health issues. Please continue to show the LOVE that is in Lovettsville by supporting each other and our local businesses.
I wanted to leave this section in the email to ensure individuals knew where to get food if needed. I will say that the LOVE in Lovettsville continues to shine through as many have been reaching out to friends and neighbors, offering to shop for groceries, and to provide any help as needed. This is a time for us all to come together as a community and I am proud of the way that Lovettsville continues to shine.
- Loudoun County Public Schools is delivering free food to ALL CHILDREN regardless if you attend your local schools or not and there are no additional requirements. Again, this applies to ALL CHILDREN. Children can get both breakfast and lunch together. Buses are coming to select stops Monday through Friday, or you can stop by the school between 10 and 1. Again, this is free for ALL CHILDREN, and by continuing to go, we will ensure that these services remain in Lovettsville.
- The Western Loudoun Food Pantry at the New Jerusalem Church in Lovettsville is still accessible! If you need assistance, here are the ways to connect:
- If you have a child in K-12 at one of the local schools, please contact your school Parent Liaison who will assist you with needed access.
- If you are a member of a local faith community, please contact your pastor who will assist you with needed access.
- If you do not fall into either of these categories, contact NJLC directly. You can email them at firstname.lastname@example.org. If you do not have email, please call 540-822-5576 to leave a message.
- You can still donate to the pantry by sending grocery store or gas cards to: NJLC, 12942 Lutheran Church Rd., Lovettsville, VA 20180. Donations of non-perishable food items, diapers, paper goods, hygiene items, and pet food are welcome. There are drop bins located at New Jerusalem, the Town Hall, and Bonnie’s Country Kitchen.
- We have been able to get Mobile Hope Loudoun to get a new stop in Lovettsville. The new stop will be on Tuesday’s from 11:30-12:00 at in Lotus Town Yoga (27 S. Loudoun St.) Due to previously lower demand in Lovettsville, they had not scheduled a stop in Town, but are more than happy to start this one.