DiDomenico & McGonagle Announce Passage of Legislation Providing Immediate Relief to Municipalities During the Ongoing COVID-19 Crisis

Last week, Senator Sal DiDomenico and Representative Joe McGonagle announced that the House and Senate passed a bill to provide necessary relief to municipalities, taxpayers, restaurants, and state authorities impacted by the COVID-19 crisis and State of Emergency declaration.

The bipartisan legislation extends the state income tax filing deadline for residents; addresses disruptions in municipal tax collections and permitting; and allows licensed restaurants to sell certain alcoholic beverages with food take-out and delivery orders, among other provisions.

“Now more than ever, our communities, taxpayers, and small businesses need extra support during these difficult times, said Senator DiDomenico. “I am proud of the action we have taken to provide relief for the hardworking people of our Commonwealth, and I am grateful to my colleagues in the Legislature for ensuring that our residents and business community remain a top priority during this unprecedented crisis.”

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Letter to the Governor

Governor’Baker:

As state and municipal officials, we thank you for responding to our letters from last week by issuing an order to close all non-essential businesses and advising residents of the Commonwealth to Stay at Home. While we appreciate the steps you have taken to help limit the spread of the novel coronavirus, we believe more aggressive action is urgently needed to further reduce the potential for transmission of COVID-19. Therefore, we call on you to take the following steps by the end of day, Friday, April 3, 2020. Shut down all non-essential construction. While we recognize some construction work is truly essential, such as emergency repairs to public infrastructure or work that is needed to stand up new facilities to address the COVID-19 pandemic, the current guidance continues to deem far too many construction projects as essential.

Moreover, the current COVID-19 Employee Health, protection, guidance and prevention guidelines indicate that in many circumstances, construction workers shall be supplied PPE including as appropriate a standard face mask, gloves, and eye protection. In this time where our healthcare professionals are being asked to ration the limited supply of Personal Protection Equipment (PPE), the need to shutdown non- essential construction should be obvious. Look for additional ways to narrow the COVID-19 Essential Services list. We understand the state’s Essential Services list has been largely influenced by federal guidelines, but we in Massachusetts ought to be even more aggressive in taking steps to limit the spread of COVID-19.

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Week 3 in the age of Coronavirus

Locked in mostly but not entirely

By Josh Resnek

I rise early. I dress. I eat. I don my gloves and my facemask, and I am off to Church Street in my car with a notebook, pen and camera by my side.

I don’t stop for coffee or a breakfast treat, which I am prone to do at Common Ground on the Revere Beach Parkway.

Like so many others, the hard working folks there are struggling with a takeout menu only.

I drive by, eyes open, looking around at the city I cover.

Amazing, really, during this week when the virus is rising to its height of sickness and death, probably doubling everyday this week and next week, to be driving around. To get back to zero – no virus – will take at least a month or two or three or maybe more.

As if that isn’t enough, there will be the slow comedown from the height of it, that is, this week of excessive sickness and death will be followed by a downward curve of sickness and death almost as bad as the worst weeks of it until the thing peters out.

The virus is problematic. Even when it appears to be gone, we are told by the nation’s leading epidemiologists it will come back in the fall for a second round.

Perhaps then we will have a vaccine although most researchers familiar with vaccines say it could take a year to a year and half before a vaccine might be discovered and readied for widespread inoculations.

It is Monday morning, April 6, 2020.

Lot’s of people are driving around. The roadways are emptier than usual but hardly empty.

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Coronavirus D Day arriving; Peak could last many days

Numbers will double and triple

By Josh Resnek

Everett residents would do well to remain inside during the next ten days to two weeks as the high point of the virus and its effect upon all of us is reaching the high point on the much talked about curve.

Twenty-nine men and women died across Massachusetts on Monday alone.

The rise in reported cases and deaths here and across the state and the nation are soaring.

The soaring precedes the coming down, which will take another month or two at the very least.

Numbers this week might well double, according to health officials.

Everett as of Tuesday had reported three coronavirus deaths.

Health officials claim the number of infected here is about 135.

In neighboring Revere, more than 200 have been infected and at least seven have died, including five at the Jack Satter House where four out of the five have succumbed to the coronavirus.

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Taxes now due in July; deferred Rental payments; no evictions

Everyone sinking in same boat

By Josh Resnek

With the economy shut down, extraordinary government and business efforts to contain the damage are being announced nearly everyday.

Governor Charlie Baker announced Friday that state taxes will not be due on April 15 this year. That date has been moved up to July 15.

This is to bring the state in line with the IRS directive ten days ago to cancel the April 15 deadline and to replace it with a July 15 deadline for filing federal taxes this year.

No penalties or late filing charges will be made by the Department of Revenue or by the IRS.

The added time is intended to give taxpayers and wage earners as well as company owners added needed months to accrue what is necessary to make the filings.

In addition, many major landlords, banks and credit companies have announced reduced or deferred rental and mortgage payments for the duration of the emergency period.

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