Sweeping Covid-19 recovery bill signed

Senator Sal DiDomenico and his colleagues in the Massachusetts Legislature passed $627 million in funding for a sweeping economic recovery and development bill, providing critical support to businesses, investments in infrastructure, and creation of new jobs in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic. The bill was signed into law on January 14, 2021.

An Act Enabling Partnerships for Growth is a COVID-19 relief and recovery package that provides support to the restaurant and tourism sectors, small businesses, and those who have been affected by the Coronavirus pandemic. The bill also creates a Future of Work Commission, establishes protections for student loan borrowers, and ushers in zoning reforms to encourage affordable housing development in our communities.

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$49M grant program to bolster small businesses impacted by Covid-19

Underrepresented groups to benefit from relief, aid package


The Baker-Polito Administration announced that nearly $49 million in grants to small businesses will be awarded through the COVID-19 Small Business Grant Program administered by the Massachusetts Growth Capital Corporation. In October, the $50.8 million grant program was announced as a key component of Partnerships for Recovery, the Administration’s comprehensive plan to get people back to work, support small businesses, foster innovation, revitalize downtowns, and ensure housing stability.

Of the businesses being notified of their successful applications, each meets the preferred criteria of being owned by women, minorities, veterans, individuals with disabilities, or that identify as LGBTQ. Additionally, every completed application received from a qualified minority-owned business that has not been able to receive prior aid from federal, state, or local programs established to support businesses during the pandemic will be receiving relief.

“Our administration is proud to announce almost $50 million in grants to support historically under-represented small business owners as they navigate the pandemic,” said Lt. Governor Karyn Polito. We thank Mass Growth Capital Corporation for their partnership to distribute these funds quickly, and look forward to continuing to work with business and community leaders to ensure a strong, equitable recovery from COVID-19.

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Hundreds of new Covid-19 cases, virus unrepentant

A Covid-19 nasal swab at a local test site. (Photo by Jim Mahoney)

By JOSH RESNEK

Everett logged another 450-500 new cases of the COVID-19 virus last week indicating the city has not yet reached a highpoint in the second incarnation of the viral swarm plaguing the United States.

The city has not published in quite some time an official number of those who have died from the virus, but it is believed to be about 50.

The numbers of infected, hospitalized, and dead have soared during the past three weeks.

The runaway, rampant, unrelentingly bad news is believed largely to be an outgrowth of the many family gatherings and travel by millions of Americans over the Thanksgiving Holiday.

Now with Christmas at our doorstep, another surge is not only likely but a guarantee, according to epidemiologists like Dr. Anthony Fauci.

Here in Everett, the city’s Health Department along with the State’s Department of Public Health, are urging everyone with preexisting conditions to remain vigilant.

The distribution of free food is ongoing, with lines growing longer and longer at two of the city’s major distri- bution points – the Connolly Center and the Grace Food Pantry.

Testing for the virus has caused thousands to stand in line for hours at a number of locations throughout the city.

There would appear to be no end in sight.

The population density in Everett, where many people live in crowded apartments with multiple families and relatives, makes dodging the virus a difficult task.

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COVID-19 cases rising dramatically

Everett a reflection of national health disaster

By JOSH RESNEK

On December 4, Everett reported a pandemic high number of 106 new cases of the virus in the city.

The week was a growing disaster of virus cases, with a total coming in at just under 400 new cases.

The city’s rising numbers reflect the national crisis, where numbers are rising unabated – not just with new cases of the virus, but with deaths.

The State Department of Public Health released figures over the weekend revealing 5,536 new cases of the virus last week in Massachusetts.

Forty-one deaths were reported as well.

The seven-day US average was at the 200,000 level of new infections.

That’s the bad news.

The good news is that Massachusetts hospitals while growing more crowded with COVID-19 patients, are not yet being overrun with ICU cases.

Here in Everett, the former Whidden Hospital is running smoothly, without panic or dangerous overload, according to officials from Cambridge Health Alliance.

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Encore staggers under COVID-19 restrictions

Paul Gaurino hands out a turkey at Everett Grace Food pantry as Covid-19 im- pacts employment and the economy. (Photo by Jim Mahoney)


By JOSH RESNEK

Mask mandates, curfews, no large gatherings, and dozens of Coronavirus restraints on doing business are having a negative effect on Encore’s conduct of its business in Everett.

Hours of operation have been curtailed here dramatically, with hours slashed. Further restrictions from the state of Massachusetts Department of Public Health are certain to follow with the dramatic rise in case numbers now taking place.

In Las Vegas, Wynn Resorts is being hampered by new restrictions imposed on out of state travel in California because of the raging virus. Company officials announced they would be cutting mid-week hours of operations because of a lack of visitors to their facilities.

Those cuts included closing down casinos midweek.

All other major players in the Las Vegas gaming marketplace are doing the same.

With air travel at a stand-still coming into Las Vegas, car travel from California was accounting for almost 25% of the Wynn Resorts take in Las Vegas recently.

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