• Did you get your $1,200 stimulus check yesterday? Many people didn't, because of glitches. From the Washington Post:
Several million people who filed their taxes via H&R Block, TurboTax and other popular services were unable to get their payments because the IRS did not have their direct deposit information on file, according to the Treasury, companies, and experts.
• If you were supposed to get a stimulus check and didn't, use this Get My Payment tool released by the IRS. Be warned: you might fill it out correctly and still get a “Payment Status Not Available" message.
• New York state is extending its stay-home order until at least May 15. Gov. Inslee is having a presser at 3 pm today. Will Washington follow suit?
• Good news, Seattle: positive coronavirus tests at UW peaked on March 28, reports Seattle Times.
• More good news:
Big news on the antibody testing front... the first set of validation experiments @UWVirology look very good. We may be able to offer clinical testing for 1000s/day as soon as next week! Stayed tuned for details. #WeGotThisWA #CrushTheCurve
— UW Virology (@UWVirology) April 15, 2020
• Other parts of the world aren't so friendly to Google and Apple using contact-tracing technology to let users know if they've come into contact with a person who has coronavirus. The EU is scrutinizing the move, reports Bloomberg.
• Washington state got 150,000 new unemployment claims last week. More from GeekWire:
The government said Thursday that the $349 billion allocated for the Paycheck Protection Program has run out, less than two weeks since launching.
A survey of Washington businesses by the National Main Street Center found 76% have employees at risk for layoffs or unemployment as a result of the coronavirus crisis.
• Washington's most recent update from its Department of Health lists 567 deaths and 10,783 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Washington state.
• New York residents will now be required to wear face coverings in public. Gov. Cuomo said the order will be in effect after a three-day grace period.
• Gates calls out Trump for threatening to cut WHO funding.
Halting funding for the World Health Organization during a world health crisis is as dangerous as it sounds. Their work is slowing the spread of COVID-19 and if that work is stopped no other organization can replace them. The world needs @WHO now more than ever.
— Bill Gates (@BillGates) April 15, 2020
• Coronavirus fucks up more than your lungs. Clinicians are finding that it can also cause "heart inflammation, acute kidney disease, neurological malfunction, blood clots, intestinal damage and liver problems."
• Senate Democrats, led partially by Washington Sen. Patty Murray, are asking the federal government for $30 billion in emergency funding for "broad COVID-19 testing across the nation," reports the Seattle Times.
• The L.A. mayor announced that all L.A. residents with symptoms can now get same or next-day testing. What say you, Durkan?
• On Monday, Trump made the claim that he "calls the shots" when it comes to reopening the economy, not the country's governors. The govs aren't having it: "We don’t have a king; we have a president."
• The mayor Orange County, Florida says the state has decided WWE is an essential business.
• The International Monetary Fund's economic forecast is out: And analysts say "the world economy in 2020 will suffer its worst year since the Great Depression," according to the Associated Press. IMF's top economist said we're looking at a global loss of "$9 trillion — more than the economies of Germany and Japan combined."
• New Orleans officials predicted the chances were "low" that its city's uniquely crowded Mardi Gras celebrations would spread coronavirus. That prediction was very, very wrong.
• South Dakota is a new coronavirus hot spot. Its governor resisted issuing a stay-home order.
• "4/20 will not be tolerated this year," according to San Fran mayor London Breed.
To be clear: 4/20 will not be tolerated this year.
Do not come to San Francisco to celebrate. We will cite people. We will arrest people if necessary.
Order food. Watch Netflix. Stay home and stay safe. pic.twitter.com/4w2T9XJrej
— London Breed (@LondonBreed) April 13, 2020
• "The committee to reopen America": Governors across America announced Monday that they will work together as regional groups to lift their lockdowns. Here's how it breaks down, per Axios:
The eastern group: New York, Connecticut, Delaware, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island and Massachusetts.
The western group: California, Oregon and Washington.
Both groups say they'll use metrics to guide reopening, with more details expected over the coming days.
• Trump says, basically, to shut the fuck up and follow his lead.
....It is the decision of the President, and for many good reasons. With that being said, the Administration and I are working closely with the Governors, and this will continue. A decision by me, in conjunction with the Governors and input from others, will be made shortly!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) April 13, 2020
• The Seattle City Council passed legislation to help small businesses and non-profits with rent payments on Monday.
• Seattle Mayor Jenny Durkan announced the first round of "stabilization" grants to local small businesses hit hard by the sudden economic downturn caused by the coronavirus pandemic.
• The need for rent relief in King County is staggeringly large.
• The House of Representatives likely won't return until at least May 4.
• The U.S. Census Bureau announced it will delay its work and then ramp up again in June.
• Workers aren't the only people getting furloughed. Washington state will "furlough" up to 950 prisoners to create more social distancing in correctional facilities.
• Little retweet, big backlash: Sunday night, Trump quote retweeted a tweet that included the hashtag "#FireFauci." This triggered a White House statement, multiple clarifications, and a lot of chatter.
• Many West Coast residents will be pleased by this headline from the New York Times: "The East Coast, Always in the Spotlight, Owes a Debt to the West"
• It seems like Washington, Oregon, and California have done a good job battling the virus, but:
This disparity in perception [between the West and East Coasts] reflects a longstanding dynamic in America politics: The concentration of media and commentators in Washington and New York has often meant that what happens in the West is overlooked or minimized. It is a function of the time difference—the three Pacific states are three hours behind New York—and the sheer physical distance.
CA's 500 ventilators will begin to ship out today:
Committed to the health of every Californian. Practicing our duty as Americans to take care of one another. I know other states would do the same. pic.twitter.com/5y5hquISew
— Gavin Newsom (@GavinNewsom) April 7, 2020
• Advocates are worried that house-flippers are being opportunistic about coronavirus woes in Seattle: “I’m working with a developer that is aggressively purchasing properties in Leschi. I’m writing offers sight unseen and do not need access to your house," one home buyer wrote in a handwritten note.
• Pope Francis delivered an Easter message to a closed basilica: “This is not a time for indifference, because the whole world is suffering and needs to be united in facing the pandemic.”
• The Queen of England also gave an address: “We know that coronavirus will not overcome us. As dark as death can be, particularly for those suffering with grief, light and life are greater. May the living flame of the Easter hope be a steady guide as we face the future.”
The Queen speaks of light overcoming darkness, and the hope that Easter symbolises, in a special message recorded to mark the Easter weekend. pic.twitter.com/fTFCOSVBtT
— The Royal Family (@RoyalFamily) April 11, 2020
• Here's our president:
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) April 12, 2020
• And then on to regularly scheduled tweeting...
Governors, get your states testing programs & apparatus perfected. Be ready, big things are happening. No excuses! The Federal Government is there to help. We are testing more than any country in the World. Also, gear up with Face Masks!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) April 12, 2020