The next Herald Local Coronavirus Briefing will appear Monday, April 20.
PA Department of Health provides update on COVID-19, 1,628 positives bring statewide total to 31,069
The Pennsylvania Department of Health today confirmed as of noon April
18, that there are 1,628 additional positive cases of COVID-19, bringing
the statewide total to 31,069. The department also reported 80 new
deaths among positive cases, bringing the statewide total to 836. Bucks
County had 1,619 cases and 75 deaths; Chester County had 796 cases and
36 deaths; Delaware County had 2,317 cases and 77 deaths; Lehigh had
2,141 cases and 29 deaths; Montgomery County had 2,781 cases and 106
deaths; Northampton County had 1,396 cases and 29 deaths; Philadelphia
had 8,502 cases and 136 deaths.
New Jersey announces state COVID-19 cases at 701,610 with 37,055 deaths
The New Jersey Department of Health announced that as of April 18, the
state had 701,610 cases and 37,055 deaths and 59,492 recoveries. There
are 2,215 Mercer County residents who have tested positive for COVID-19
and 110 people have died. Hopewell Township has 46 cases; Hopewell
Borough 3 cases; Princeton has 64 cases; Trenton 563 cases.
Hunterdon County lists 3,914 cases and 17 deaths. Flemington has 14
cases; Frenchtown 4 cases; Stockton none; Milford two; Lambertville 13;
Clinton 46; Delaware Township 10; East Amwell nine; Kingwood seven;
Raritan 60 and West Amwell six.
Gov. Wolf announces nearly $16 million in funding for Pennsylvania food banks
Gov. Tom Wolf today announced nearly $16 million in funding for
Pennsylvania food banks, which are providing critical assistance to
Pennsylvanians during the COVID-19 health crisis. The Pennsylvania
Department of Agriculture has received $14.9 million from the U.S.
Department of Agriculture (USDA) for The Emergency Food Assistance
Program (TEFAP) in Pennsylvania to provide critical support and food to
Pennsylvania’s food banks and emergency food assistance network working
to feed the hundreds of thousands of Pennsylvanians. These funds were
provided as a result of the Families First Coronavirus Response Act,
which was passed by Congress and enacted into law on March 18.
The Pennsylvania Department of Agriculture will push $3.75 million in
TEFAP money directly to 18 food banks in Pennsylvania to cover
administrative costs associated with storage, transportation and
distribution of USDA Foods. In addition to this direct funding, the
department will distribute $11.15 million in USDA Foods – including
meats, vegetables, canned goods, cereal, rice, pasta, eggs, and more –
to the state’s food banks to distribute through their network of
distribution sites. The food and funding will be disbursed statewide to
all 67 counties and distributed according to population and need.
Additionally, through an emergency contract with the Pennsylvania
Emergency Management Agency, the Pennsylvania Department of Agriculture
is providing Hunger-Free Pennsylvania and its network of members $1
million in emergency funding for food and supplies.
Veterans benefits Continue to be available during COVID-19
The Pennsylvania Department of Military and Veterans Affairs (DMVA)
wants to assure veterans that state and federal benefits processing are
still ongoing. The DMVA and the Federal VA both continue to work
remotely to provide veterans’ information, enroll for benefits, and
serve other veterans’ needs throughout this difficult pandemic
The DMVA administers an array of programs and services to meet the needs
of veterans. They include: Veterans Temporary Assistance/Military
Family Relief Assistance programs; Records Request Program; Amputee,
Paralyzed and Blind Veterans Pension programs; Educational Gratuity
Program; and the Disabled Veteran Real Estate Tax Exemption Program.
Applications for these programs are traditionally initiated with the
county director for veterans affairs (CDVA) staff and their contact
information can be found at
If a CDVA is not available due to county office closure, the veteran
may contact DMVA’s Office of Veterans Affairs directly at 800-547-2838.
For information and updates on all of DMVA’s programs and services,
L&I plans launch of Pandemic Unemployment Assistance (PUA) website
Pennsylvania’s new Pandemic Unemployment Assistance (PUA) website for
self-employed, independent contractors, gig workers, and others not
eligible for regular unemployment compensation (UC) will begin accepting
applications within the next few days. PUA is included in the new
federal unemployment compensation benefits provided by the Coronavirus
Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act
The Department of Labor & Industry (L&I) will announce when the
PUA website is ready to accept applications. In the meantime,
Pennsylvanians who meet eligibility requirements are strongly encouraged
to begin gathering the information they will need to file an accurate
claim and receive benefits quickly.
Acceptable documentation for proof of employment or self-employment can
include, but is not limited to: Copies of recent paycheck stubs; Bank
receipts showing deposits; 1099s; Billing notices provided to your
customers; Recent advertisements for your business or services;
Statements from recent customers; Current business licenses, ledgers,
contracts, invoices; and/or Building leases.
Acceptable documentation of wages to show previous income can include,
but is not limited to: Tax returns; Paycheck stubs; Bank receipts;
Ledgers; Contracts; Invoices; and/or Billing statements.
LoveBucks T-shirt sales to fund gift cards for health care workers
Due to recent events, there will not be any large-scale group running
events held in the foreseeable future. Pat McCloskey works most of the
year by himself, planning foot races in Bucks County. Luckily, he has a
creative side. He thought about designing and selling sweatshirts and
T-shirts with a supportive LoveBucks graphic to spread the idea, “Love
Local, Spend Local, Pay It Forward.’’
Proceeds from the sales will be used to buy gift cards from local Bucks
County eateries. Those gift cards will then be donated to front-line
healthcare workers and other critical workforce personnel. Some health
care locations are not allowing food donations, therefore gift cards are
a helpful way to show gratitude. Shirts can be ordered at the runBucks
Participating merchants include: Tony’s Place Bar & Grille, Ivyland;
Naked Brewing, Southampton; Chickie’s & Pete’s, Warrington;
Pizzeria Uno, Warrington; and The Farm House Tavern, Doylestown. Bucks
County area eateries wanting to get involved are encouraged to contact
McCloskey at LoveBucks@runBUCKS.com