Iowa governor calls on Iowans to 'save a life,' be responsible for their own health

By  | 

DES MOINES, Iowa (KWQC) - Iowa Gov. Kim Reynolds asked Iowans to help the state "save a life" in being responsible for their health and others.

"Now is a critical time for our state," Reynolds said Monday. "And I'm counting on every Iowan to be responsible for their health by doing the right thing. Help us save a life, we're all in this together."

Governor Reynolds addressed the state during a press conference on Monday afternoon. She reiterated the announcement from Monday morning that the Iowa Department of Public was notified of 15 additional positive cases of the new coronavirus, COVID-19. The new cases were in nine counties including Dubuque and Muscatine.

The new cases bring the total number of positive cases statewide to 105. There have been 2,043 negative tests as of Monday morning that includes testing reported by the State Hygienic Lab and other labs.

According to IDPH, the locations and age ranges of the 15 individuals include:
• Allamakee County, an adult between 18 and 40.
• Dubuque County, an adult between 18 and 40 and an adult between 61-80.
• Hancock County, two adults between 61 and 80.
• Johnson County, one adult between 41 and 60 and two adults between 61 and 80.
• Linn County, one adult between 18 and 40 and one adult between 41 and 60.
• Muscatine County, one adult between 41 and 60.
• Polk County, one adult between 18 and 40 and one adult between 41 and 60.
• Wapello County, one adult between 61 and 80.
• Woodbury County, one adult between 41 and 60.

According to the Iowa Dept. of Public Health, there are now six cases reported in Dubuque County and three in Muscatine County.

When asked if she was considering a shelter in place order, the governor said there have been daily phone calls with health officials in the state addressing this on the local and state level.

Governor Reynolds said that the state is providing guidelines, resources and metrics in place for local officials who have the authority to put a shelter in place order into place should they choose to.

In addition, a public hotline has been established for Iowans with questions about COVID-19. The line is available 24/7 by calling 2-1-1 or 1-800-244-7431.

The state of Iowa has started sharing the number of negative tests conducted at other labs and will soon provide additional information regarding hospitalization and recovery.

Reynolds also announced Monday the launch of a new Iowa Small Business Relief Program that will provide financial assistance to small businesses that have been economically impacted by the coronavirus pandemic.

The program offers eligible small businesses grants ranging from $5,000-$25,000 in addition to offering Iowa businesses a deferral of sales and use or withholding taxes due and waiver of penalty and interest.

To be eligible for a small business relief grant, eligible businesses must be experiencing business disruption due to the COVID-19 pandemic and have employed two to 25 people prior to March 17.

The funds may not be used to pay debts incurred prior to March 17.

The Iowa Economic Development Authority will review grant applications for eligibility and will determine the grant amount by the level of impact including loss in sales revenue and employees.

Notification of award decisions and disbursement of grant funds will be expedited.

The Iowa Department of Revenue will review each application as applicable, to determine if it is appropriate to grant a deferral of the eligible taxes and waiver of penalty and interest.

The dual application for grant assistance and tax deferral is available at iowabusinessrecovery.com. The deadline for applications is 12 p.m. March 31. The program may be restricted due to funding availability.

If you missed the press conference, you can watch it below.