As New Jersey Crosses 10,000 COVID-19 Deaths, Rep. Sherrill Calls for More Aid to the Garden State

May 15, 2020
Press Release
Votes to Provide Support to Hospitals, First Responders, and NJ Homeowners with Repeal of the SALT Deduction Cap

Washington, DC -- Representative Mikie Sherrill (NJ-11) released the following statement after the passage of the Heroes Act with bipartisan support in the House of Representatives. The Heroes Act provides billions in relief to New Jersey, including an estimated $1.5 billion in direct support to the towns and counties of the 11th Congressional District. It also repeals the state and local tax (SALT) deduction cap for 2020 and 2021, a priority Representative Sherrill has long championed to get money back into the pockets of hard-hit New Jerseyans.

“The toll of COVID-19 on the state of New Jersey cannot be understated,” said Representative Sherrill. “More than 10,000 of our neighbors and friends have died from the virus, and additional federal support is essential to preventing further tragedy. While I do not support every provision of this legislation, it provides critical aid to my state so we can fight the pandemic and help make our communities whole.”

Representative Sherrill spoke on the House Floor, outlining the desperate need for federal support to New Jersey. To watch her floor speech, click here.

Several key provisions highlighted by the bipartisan Regional Recovery Task Force, formed by Representative Sherrill and Representative Pete King (NY-02), are reflected in the Heroes Act, including additional funding for contact tracing, testing, and mental health services.

The legislation delivers critical support for New Jersey, frontline workers, hospitals, and testing, including:

  • $27.9 billion estimated funding directly to the state of New Jersey, counties, and municipalities;
  • $1.5 billion estimated funding for the towns and counties in NJ-11;
  • Removes the state and local tax (SALT) deduction cap for 2020 and 2021;
  • $100 billion for hospitals and healthcare providers and specifically enables New Jersey hospitals to pay our doctors and nurses more to attract and retain top-tier talent in the state;
  • $75 billion for expanded testing, tracing and treatment – which will also help NJ create jobs for contact tracing, a critical component to safely reopening the economy and something the bipartisan Regional Recovery Task Force worked to include;
  • $500 million for Assistance to Firefighter Grants; $500 million for SAFER grants; and $100 million for Emergency Management Performance Grants. The bill also provides a presumption of service connection for first responders so the families of first responders who tragically lost their lives in the line of duty keeping us safe from COVID-19 will receive full benefits;
  • Extends the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) for small businesses until December 31, includes funding set aside for businesses smaller than 10 employees, adds flexibility to PPP Loan Forgiveness, and adds $10 billion to the Economic Injury Disaster Loan (EIDL) program;
  • Funding for research on the mental health impact of COVID-19 and resources for healthcare professionals on the front lines, another issue highlighted by the Regional Recovery Task Force;
  • A Nursing Strike Team for States to deploy to skilled nursing facilities or nursing homes within 72 hours of three residents or employees being diagnosed with or suspected of having COVID-19;
  • Funding and requirements to make sure our seniors are taken care of at long-term care facilities;
  • A second round of direct payments to families: up to $6,000 per household, with the age for dependents raised to 24;
  • $25 billion to support continued operations of the postal service and protections for postal workers;
  • Expands the use and oversight of Defense Production Act to increase supply of critical medical supplies/equipment, diagnostic tests, and PPE.