10/25/20

Governor Jared Polis today announced that the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment (CDPHE) has launched its statewide COVID-19 exposure notification system, in partnership with Google and Apple. Coloradans received a notice on their Android and Apple phones with instructions about how to opt-in.  


 

“We must regain lost ground against this deadly virus, and we need every tool at our disposal to protect ourselves, our families, our communities, and our small businesses,” said Governor Polis. “It’s important for Coloradans to enable CO Exposure Notifications on your iPhone or Android to help save lives, to contain this deadly disease, protect your loved ones, and to use every technological advantage we have against the virus.”


 

CO Exposure Notifications complements existing statewide health safety protocols without compromising the privacy of Coloradans. Exposure Notification systems like these are critical to preventing further spread of COVID-19. 


 

Watch Governor Polis explain CO Exposure Notification in a video


 

When users enable the service, their smartphones share anonymous tokens with other users through the phones’ Bluetooth technology. If another user tests positive for COVID-19 within a 14-day period and chooses to upload their results, users at risk of infection will receive an alert of potential exposure. Tokens are not associated with any phone number, name, location or IP address and they change every 15 minutes to add an extra layer of anonymity. Learn more about CO Exposure Notifications at addyourphone.com. 


 

Sarah Tuneberg, Lead of Colorado’s Containment and Testing Team and CO Exposure Notifications service lead previously explained, “We understand the importance of privacy and security and have taken extensive steps to ensure personal information is not collected, stored or transmitted through the use of CO Exposure Notifications. By adding your phone to the fight and increasing risk awareness and identification, you can help Colorado stop the spread of COVID-19.” 


 

CO Exposure Notifications also provides individuals who receive an exposure alert with instructions on recommended next steps, including information on quarantine and contacting their local public health agency.


 

For additional resources on COVID-19, visit covid19.colorado.gov 

 

10/21/20

Governor Jared Polis took further action to address the COVID-19 pandemic.


 

The Governor extended an Executive Order temporarily suspending certain regulatory statutes due to the presence of COVID-19. The Governor also extended an Executive Order addressing marriage licenses.

 

 

10/21/20

Governor Jared Polis today signed an Executive Order implementing the remaining recommendations from the Special Eviction Prevention Task Force. The Governor convened the Task Force in August to examine housing instability challenges due to COVID-19. 


 

“This Executive Order amends and extends Executive Order D 223, reaffirming and clarifying the Center for Disease Control and Prevention’s national eviction moratorium and protecting residential and commercial tenants at risk for eviction who were economically harmed by COVID-19. We must take additional steps to provide relief to Colorado renters and small businesses,” the Governor’s Executive Order reads.  


 

Governor Polis has taken bold action to keep people housed during this global pandemic. Prior to signing an Executive Order allocating available CARES Act funds to the Department of Local Affairs (DOLA) to supplement the funding provided by HB20-1410 for housing assistance to support those who have been economically impacted by COVID-19, the Governor also previously implemented the Task Force recommendation requiring landlords to provide notice of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) moratorium and a declaration form with any demand for rent and before initiating an eviction, in addition to a list of tenant resources.


 

Last week, Governor Polis signed an Executive Order D 2020 223 which included recommendations of the task force: 

  • Continuation of the CDC notice requirement, including in Spanish with DOLA’s notice template. 

  • Suspension of the assessment and accumulation of late fees and interest until December 31, 2020. 

  • Continuation of the 30-day extended period to cure for both commercial and residential evictions. 

  • Directs the Executive Director of DOLA to continue working with landlords to implement the model rent repayment agreements created by DOLA to assist individuals who are unable to pay rent because they have been impacted by financial hardship due to COVID-19.

  • Encourages municipalities to remove limits on the number of unrelated persons who can live in a single household and on the number of days that hotel rooms may be occupied.


 

The Task Force report can be found here. The Governor has committed to keeping these Executive Orders in place until December 31, 2020. 

 

10/19/20

Governor Jared Polis took action to address COVID-19 and support election cybersecurity. 


 

The Governor extended an Executive Order allowing voluntary or elective surgeries and procedures to proceed under certain conditions. 


 

The Governor also signed an Executive Order activating up to 10 members of the Colorado National Guard Defensive Cyber Operations Element to assist with election cybersecurity defense efforts during the 2020 Presidential election.  The National Guard members may participate in training activities and assist with election cybersecurity defense efforts from October 19, 2020, through November 4, 2020, and will help ensure that Colorado remains a model for elections.

 

10/19/20

The Office of eHealth Innovation (OeHI) continues to support and advance the Governor’s pandemic response and call to action to improve behavioral health for Coloradans through telemedicine and health information technology. 


 

On September 14, 2020, OeHI, in partnership with the Governor’s Office, and their fiscal agent, Health Care Policy and Financing (HCPF), received federal fund match approval for $65,099,970 from the Centers of Medicaid and Medicaid (CMS) through the American Recovery and Reinvestment Health Information Technology Act to both continue key health IT infrastructure projects and new projects launched during early stages of the COVID-19 pandemic that include telemedicine, health information exchange enhancements, care coordination systems, information governance, and other innovations. These funds continue many projects that CMS funded as part of the approved emergency response funds, as well as projects established by HCPF, OeHI, and the eHealth Commission prior to the pandemic response.


 

“Colorado is leading the way in saving people money on healthcare by using health information, telemedicine, and innovation to address our immediate COVID-19 pandemic response needs. This approach is a key component about how the state moves forward in the coming months to address both physical and behavioral health needs of hardworking Coloradans,” said Governor Polis.


With this important funding, HCPF, OeHI, and the eHealth Commission are establishing critical and strategic health IT infrastructure to support Coloradans through the COVID-19 emergency response and beyond. 


 

“We are still learning about the impacts of COVID-19 and time is of the essence. Access to real-time health information can help slow the spread of COVID-19 and enable patients and clinicians to make more informed decisions,” said Lt. Governor and Office of Saving People Money on Health Care Director Dianne Primavera. “One of the biggest barriers to using telemedicine is understanding what it is and how to have the visit with your doctor. We have heard from doctors and patients around the state who are using telemedicine that it takes time to learn. But when they figure it out, many patients and providers prefer the virtual option for convenience and safety, especially during the COVID-19 pandemic.”


 

One of the first projects launched during the initial response included improving how COVID-19 results are routed from lab facilities to providers and patients by submitting the results through Colorado’s Health Information Exchanges (HIEs). Through OeHI-led projects, Coloradans now receive their COVID-19 test results in their patient portals faster than before.


 

To inform all telemedicine efforts, OeHI has launched telemedicine projects with over 37 Medicaid providers who provide physical and mental health services, telemedicine analysis and evaluation with the Colorado Health Institute (CHI) using clinical and claims data, and regional learning collaboratives with Prime Health to increase learnings and collaboration across the state. The culmination of these projects will inform future state infrastructure and policy efforts. The first several telemedicine projects to launch include projects with the Colorado Coalition for the Homeless, Developmental Disability Resource Center, Axis Health System, Mental Health Center of Denver, and Beverly Hawpe & Associates. Many more projects with Medicaid providers will be launched throughout October. In addition to these projects, the telemedicine evaluation with CHI leverages interviews with patients and providers and information from the Colorado Health Observation Regional Data System (CHORDS), a data partnership between 14 provider organizations to use clinical information to inform public health response and policy.  Through this research, OeHI and CHI are releasing a number of publications that highlight patient, provider, and payer perspectives about telemedicine use, cost, and preferences. 


 

To help improve information about virtual care and telemedicine for all health needs and for all Coloradans, OeHI has launched Health at Home, a new website in both English and Spanish. OeHI launched the site over the summer and will continue to refine the content in the coming months. This site is geared towards whole-person care, which includes both physical and mental health. This site, along with OeHI’s other efforts, is part of Polis’ strategy to operationalize the recommendations of the Behavioral Health Task Force Blueprint and Covid-19 Committee recommendations. OeHI is working closely with the Governor and Lt. Governor’s Office to finalize approaches, projects, and next steps for advancing this work. 


 

To guide this work in the coming days, weeks, and months, Governor Polis and Lt. Governor Primavera continue to rely on the OeHI and eHealth Commission to oversee, coordinate and strategize health IT policy, infrastructure and innovation in a way that leverages the lessons learned through the pandemic response, as well as existing foundational efforts established through Colorado’s Health IT Roadmap, which focuses on leveraging Colorado’s health information exchanges (Colorado Regional Health Information Organization and Quality Health Network) to provide trusted infrastructure. 

 

For more information about the Office of eHealth Innovation’s telemedicine and health IT projects such as the latest publications with Colorado Health Institute refer to their website: https://oehi.colorado.gov/ 

 

10/16/20

Governor Jared Polis today discussed the state’s response to COVID-19 and the state’s plan to distribute the vaccine once one is made available. The Governor was joined by Jill Ryan, Executive Director of the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment, Dr. Eric France, CDPHE, Chief Medical Officer, and Diana Herrero, CDPHE, Interim Deputy Director, Division of Disease Control and Public Health Response. 


 

“We need to really limit social gatherings and getting together with other people for a couple of weeks to limit the spread of COVID-19,” said Governor Polis. “Even when a vaccine is available, all of our challenges will not be solved or eradicate COVID-19 from our lives overnight. Once there is a safe vaccine, it will take time for it to be widely available. There are important tools available right now like wearing a mask, avoiding large crowds, practicing social distancing habits, and washing your hands often. 


 

“We all hope for scientists to create a safe and effective vaccine and for now we need to remain vigilant about being safe and using these prevention tools to save lives and save our economy. Colorado’s COVID-19 vaccine plan will ensure that the vaccine is safe and distributed as efficiently and effectively as possible. We are prepared and we are ready,” Governor Polis concluded.


 

The State of Colorado is submitting the Colorado COVID Vaccine Plan to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), detailing how the state will distribute a vaccine when it is made available. The plan comes after months of work with doctors, public health officials, local government and public health leaders, pharmacies, individual stakeholders, community organizations and more. The plan was created with health equity in mind to ensure those disproportionately impacted communities have an opportunity to be vaccinated earlier. The state continues to closely consult impacted and at-risk populations, specifically the Ute Mountain Ute Tribe, Southern Ute Indian Tribe, and officials from the Urban Indian Health Program, advocates and individuals in communities of color, homeless shelters, advocacy organizations, and correctional facilities.


 

“Vaccine deployment extends far beyond public health,” said Jill Hunsaker Ryan, executive director, CDPHE. “The department, with support from the Colorado Department of Public Safety, convened a multi-agency, multi-sector team to focus on receiving and distributing a COVID-19 vaccine. We want to recognize the many agencies and organizations that informed our planning, and thank them for their partnership and guidance. We look forward to working with more stakeholders so we can continue improving the plan.”


 

The Governor emphasized the timing for a vaccine and reminded Coloradans that even when one is announced, it could take up to a year to distribute widely. Gov. Polis and public health officials urged Coloradans to take advantage of the options available to them to stay safe and limit the spread of the virus including wearing a mask, avoiding large gatherings, washing hands frequently, and physically distancing. 


 

Gov. Polis also highlighted rising cases in Colorado and that the state’s positivity rate is beginning to creep above 5%. On Sept. 4, there were 132 confirmed COVID-19 related hospitalizations, and today Colorado has more than 350. Coloradans who think they have any symptoms or think they may have been exposed to COVID-19, can visit over 80 free, quick, and easy testing sites across the state. Find a testing site at covidtest.colorado.gov/map


 

Gov. Polis also extended an Executive Order authorizing the executive directors of certain State agencies to promulgate and issue emergency rules extending the expiration date of licenses and other documents for an additional thirty days due to the presence of COVID-19.


 

View the news conference on the Governor’s Facebook page.

View today’s presentation

 

 

10/15/20

Governor Jared Polis today signed an Executive Order implementing a number of recommendations from the Special Eviction Prevention Task Force. The Governor convened the Task Force in August to examine housing instability challenges due to COVID-19. 


 

“My top priority is protecting the health and safety of Coloradans, which includes secure housing. Implementing these thoughtful recommendations is another important step toward creating housing stability for more Coloradans during this pandemic,” said Governor Jared Polis. “We want to help provide relief for families that have been impacted financially by this pandemic. I thank members of the Task Force for their work on these recommendations and my administration, in partnership with DOLA, local governments, and private partners looks forward to working to help more Coloradans have a home to live in.”


 

Last week, Gov. Polis signed an Executive Order allocating available CARES Act funds to the Department of Local Affairs (DOLA) to supplement the funding provided by HB20-1410 for housing assistance to support those who have been economically impacted by COVID-19. The Governor also previously implemented the Task Force recommendation requiring landlords to provide notice of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) moratorium and a declaration form with any demand for rent and before initiating an eviction, in addition to a list of tenant resources.


 

Executive Order D 2020 223 includes: 

  • Continuation of the CDC notice requirement, including in Spanish with DOLA’s notice template. 

  • Suspension of the assessment and accumulation of late fees and interest until December 31, 2020. 

  • Continuation of the 30-day extended period to cure for both commercial and residential evictions. 

  • Directs the Executive Director of DOLA to continue working with landlords to implement the model rent repayment agreements created by DOLA to assist individuals who are unable to pay rent because they have been impacted by financial hardship due to COVID-19.

  • Encourages municipalities to remove limits on the number of unrelated persons who can live in a single household and on the number of days that hotel rooms may be occupied.


 

The report can be found here. The Governor has committed to keeping this Executive Order in place until December 31, 2020. 

 

10/14/20

Governor Jared Polis took action today to address the COVID-19 pandemic. 


 

The Governor extended an Executive Order increasing the Medicaid home health workforce and eliminating cost-sharing for COVID-19 testing and treatment for Medicaid enrollees. The Governor also extended an Executive Order related to criminal justice

 

10/13/20

Governor Jared Polis today provided an update on Colorado’s response to COVID-19 and discussed ways to support local restaurants during this challenging time. 


 

“Coloradans are very alarmed by the increased number of very sick people coming into hospitals and know that we must do better with the basics like reducing the number of people we are with, washing our hands, avoiding crowds, and wearing a mask,” said Governor Jared Polis. “Prior to serving as Governor, I built businesses and know that our economic health is inherently tied to our public health. We know that when our restaurants thrive and consumer confidence increases, our agriculture industry and supply chain benefits. The better we do at suppressing this virus and finding creative solutions for safer outdoor dining, the more we can support small businesses, like our restaurants, and keep building back our economy stronger than before.” 


 

Colorado last week recorded more than 1,000 cases of COVID-19 in one 24-hour period, the most since March. Today the state saw another day with more than 1,000 cases and alarmingly the positivity rate is above 5%. On September 4, there were 132 confirmed COVID-19 hospitalizations in the state and on October 12th there were 288. 


 

The Governor was joined today by Sonia Riggs, President and CEO of the Colorado Restaurant Association, Aileen Reilly, owner of Beast + Bottle and Coperta, and Alice Jackson, President of Xcel Energy Colorado to discuss the impacts COVID-19 has had on the restaurant industry and what Coloradans can do to support local restaurants. Reilly discussed how her company is working to keep customers and workers safe and overcome challenges posed by the pandemic. Gov. Polis also joined Reilly in support of the federal Restaurant Act to provide assistance to the industry.  


 

Xcel Energy Foundation and Xcel Energy today announced that they will be committing an initial $500,000 to the Colorado Restaurant Association Foundation to help support local restaurants through the winter season. In addition to this donation, they are also committing to matching donations of $50,000, up to an additional $250,000, for every $500,000 that’s raised for the Colorado Restaurant Association Foundation. That’s a possible total contribution of $750,000 from the Xcel Energy Foundation and Xcel Energy. This is one of the single largest gifts the company has made in their history.


 

“We are proud to be part of the Colorado community, and we are committed to helping our state recover from the economic impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic,” said Alice Jackson, president of Xcel Energy—Colorado. “Restaurants are part of what makes Colorado a special place to live, work, and visit. We thank Governor Polis for his leadership to aid Colorado’s recovery and we are proud to support this effort to ensure restaurants can continue to safely serve their customers through the winter months.”


 

Governor Polis also announced that on October 19, there will be a virtual convening of architects, contractors, engineers, local public health and government officials, and restaurant leaders to discuss ways to creatively continue to provide an outdoor dining experience this winter. Restaurants have been creative in finding ways to create outdoor dining spaces over the last seven months. That’s why Governor Polis today encouraged city leaders and local government officials to begin thinking about ways to sustain safe outdoor dining throughout the winter months by utilizing things like fire pits, space heaters, and tenting. The Governor also applauded the municipalities who have already taken steps to help restaurants during this challenging time. 

 

Coloradans can support their favorite restaurants by continuing to dine with them and also by donating at COOutdoorDining.org

 

 

10/9/20

Governor Jared Polis provided an update on the State’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic today. 
 

“People of all ages are concerned with the significant increase of COVID-19 infections and hospitalizations in Colorado and know that we must all need to do our part better to stop the spread of this deadly virus. We might be tired of the virus but it’s not tired of us,” said Governor Polis. “Whether you are 23 or 93: wear a mask, avoid large gatherings, and interact with less people each day because you love your family, yourself, and your community.”


 

Governor Polis signed an Executive Order today allocating $14.9M in available CARES Act funds to support the state's economic recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic: 

  • $6.0M to Energize Colorado to supplement the $20M provided by SB20-222. This funding will enable Energize Colorado to provide additional support to small businesses affected by the pandemic. SB20-222 was sponsored by Sen. Faith Winter, Sen. Jeff Bridges, Rep. Mary Young, and Rep. Perry Will.  

  • $2.6M to the Department of Local Affairs to supplement the funding provided by HB20-1410 for housing assistance to support those who have been economically impacted by COVID-19. The bill was sponsored by Rep. Serena Gonzales-Gutierrez, Rep. Tony Exum Sr, Sen. Julie Gonzales, and Sen. Rachel Zenzinger. 

  • $0.1M to the Food Pantry Assistance Grant Program to supplement the funding provided by HB20-1422 to aid Colorado food pantries and food banks in the purchase of foods to meet the needs of Coloradans. The bill was sponsored by Rep. Daneya Esgar, Rep. Lisa Cutter, Sen. Rachel Zenzinger, and Sen. Tammy Story. 

  • $6.2M to the Department of Corrections for staffing costs associated with the COVID-19 pandemic.


 

Gov. Polis also highlighted the Energize Gap Fund, which is a bold, ambitious proposal and bipartisan effort in the state legislature to provide much-needed relief to small businesses and nonprofits across the state that are feeling the impacts of this pandemic. In the first round, 6,000 applications that requested $79 million in grants and $56 million in loans were submitted. Over 50 percent of applicants were from women-owned entities, more than a quarter were rural entities, 12 percent were from Latino-owned enterprises, and 10 percent were from black-owned enterprises. The second round of applications just opened this week. 


 

Gov. Polis also discussed tips and tricks for Halloween. Coloradans should keep a physical distance and figure out ways to hand out candy while keeping distance. Move activities outside and limit the number of people. Get creative about Halloween activities, for example, a candy hunt at a local park with a small group of friends. Trick or treat close to your home. Those participating in Halloween related activities should not rely on costume masks because they may not provide a full barrier against respiratory droplets. To protect against COVID-19, a mask should have multiple layers of fabric and be free of any holes or tears.  Most importantly, do not participate in any Halloween activities - indoor or outdoor - if you are feeling symptoms of COVID-19 or if you have been exposed to someone with COVID-19.


 

Gov. Polis also extended Executive Orders related to learning pods.  View the news conference on the Governor’s Facebook page.  

 

10/7/20

Governor Jared Polis took action today to address the COVID-19 pandemic. 


 

The Governor extended Executive Orders that maintain eligibility for Coloradans enrolled in Medicaid and the Children’s Basic Health Plan and ordering expedited unemployment insurance claim processing. 

 

 

10/6/20

Governor Jared Polis and Dr. Rachel Herlihy, state epidemiologist, provided an update on the state’s response to COVID-19 and discussed recent trends including an uptick in cases and hospitalizations over the last few weeks. 


 

“This is a critical moment, and it is up to us what path we put ourselves and our state on these next few months,” said Governor Jared Polis. “To a large extent, these next few weeks will determine how the rest of the year will unfold. We’ve come too far together to get complacent or fatigued. We must remain vigilant and do a better job of avoiding large crowds, wearing masks, physically distancing, and washing our hands.”


 

On September 4, there were 132 confirmed COVID-19 hospitalizations in the state and on October 5, there were 233. As Colorado approaches into flu season, upcoming holidays, and colder temperatures, it’s critical that everyone continue taking the necessary precautions to limit the spread of the virus.


 

Gov. Polis provided an update on testing sites around the state and new community testing sites that will be coming online. Community testing sites will allow for a more targeted approach and efficient use of resources. The Montbello Recreation Center and Paco Sanchez Park are two new community sites opening up in Denver this week, and Restoration Christian Fellowship’s parking lot will also be utilized as a community testing site in Aurora. Water World also remains open daily from 8:00 a.m-4:00 p.m. and STRIDE is offering testing at seven additional locations. Coloradans can visit covid19.colorado.gov/testing for testing locations nearby.


 

The Governor also applauded the state testing team and the State Lab for reaching the highest single day of tests reported at 19,761. In fact, the State Lab set a record for the week, processing 35,727 tests. Over the last week (ending 10/2), the State Lab and partners across the state averaged nearly 17,000 tests per day in Colorado with more than 90% of all results being returned in three days or less.


 

Gov. Polis today extended Executive Orders to provide boards of county commissioners with broader discretion and greater flexibility to implement restrictions on open burning, providing relief to public utility customers, and expanding the health care workforce for hospitals and other inpatient treatment facilities. The Governor also amended the Safer at Home and in the Vast, Great Outdoors Executive Order, which aligns the last call for takeout alcohol with the last call for in person service time as established by each county by the Safer at Home dial. 


 

View the news conference on the Governor’s Facebook page.  

 

10/5/20

Governor Jared Polis took further action to address the COVID-19 pandemic and the Cameron Peak fire. 


 

The Governor extended the Protect Our Neighbors Executive Order. The Governor also extended an Executive Order concerning changes to 2020 election activity to limit in-person contact while allowing the election to proceed safely and without interruption to the Secretary of State’s operations. 


 

Gov. Polis signed an Executive Order memorializing a verbal disaster declaration from September 6, 2020, for the Cameron Peak Fire. The Executive Order enables State agencies to coordinate and makes resources available for fire suppression, response, consequence management, and recovery efforts.

 

 

10/2/20

Gov. Jared Polis today provided an update on the state’s response to COVID-19 from the University of Northern Colorado (UNC) in Greeley. The Governor was joined by Betsy Markey, executive director of the Office of Economic Development and International Trade, Rick Garcia, executive director of the Department of Local Affairs, and Representative Mary Young. Gov. Polis visited Northern Colorado today to meet with COVID Relief Fund recipients, and discuss ways the State is supporting communities and their recoveries. 


 

“Much like our state as a whole, Northern Colorado is an epicenter for innovation and entrepreneurship and reflects our diversity. I was thrilled to meet with educators, small businesses, artists, and hardworking working Coloradans today in Greeley, Windsor and Fort Collins about how they are creatively responding to this pandemic and helping to build back our economy,” said Governor Jared Polis. “We’re not through this pandemic yet, and we all must do a better job of wearing masks, avoiding crowds, and being smart to slow the spread of the virus.  Get tested if you have any symptoms at one of our dozens of free testing sites listed at covid19.colorado.gov. My team is proud to continue partnering with our local communities and supporting their efforts as we all work together to bounce back stronger than before.”


 

The Governor was joined at today’s briefing by State Rep. Mary Young who has been an effective voice for Greeley at the state legislature and is also a UNC alumnus. 


 

“It’s heartwarming to see how Coloradans have come together to slow the spread of COVID-19 and help our communities recover,” said Rep. Mary Young, D-Greeley. “The legislature’s top priority was to help our state safely reopen and to provide direct assistance to hardworking Coloradans who need just a little help to get through this crisis. I’m proud of our bipartisan work to provide grants to small businesses to help them get through these difficult times and the additional resources we directed to help Coloradans pay their rent, mortgage, or utility bills.”


 

During the briefing, OEDIT Executive Director Markey discussed the Energize Colorado Gap Fund which launched last month to help small businesses, the CLIMBER Fund and additional economic resources for small businesses, nonprofits, freelancers, and independent contractors.  


 

DOLA Executive Director Garcia discussed the department’s local partnerships, the distribution of federal CARES Act funding to immediately and effectively respond to the economic challenges of the pandemic, and additional efforts being conducted by DOLA to respond to the pandmeic. 


 

The Governor began the day in Greeley meeting with the Greeley Small Business Development Corporation, which has provided free, confidential consulting services for small businesses and entrepreneurs throughout Larimer and Weld counties during the pandemic. The organization has played a critical role in helping local businesses access state and federal resources, like PPP funds, Small Business Association Loans, and Energize Colorado grants. Gov. Polis then visited COVID Relief Fund recipient, Distortions Unlimited, a company that makes Halloween masks, props, and animatronics for haunted attractions, and has collected funds to support local artists. 


 

In Windsor, the Governor visited a COVID Relief Fund recipient, Dementia Together, an organization that provides support services and enrichment opportunities to Coloradans living with dementia and their care partners. They received $12,500 to increase the frequency of their support group meetings. Governor also visited Grandview Elementary School, hearing from students, teachers and staff about their COVID-19 protocols for in-person learning. As the Governor announced, the State in partnership with the State Emergency Operations Center and Colorado Department of Education has delivered 1.1 million medical-grade KN-95 masks for staff who work directly with students to every school district. This is part of the Polis administration’s broader effort to provide schools with the resources they need to reopen safely. Larimer County received 8600 masks per week for a total of 77,400 in the last 9 weeks and Weld County received 6,900 masks per week, for a total of 62,100 masks in the last 9 weeks totaling 139,500 masks for schools in northern Colorado.


 

To cap off the day, the Governor toured the Fort Collins River District to see the economic redevelopment and reinvestment in businesses along the river. The Governor also met with staff at the COVID Relief recipient, Meals on Wheels Fort Collins, which used the funds to deliver fresh, healthy foods and social interaction to seniors who have limited mobility in the greater Fort Collins area. They received $25,000 to continue delivering meals to families in need and expand their outreach. To date, the COVID Relief Fund has awarded more than $2.2 million to more than 75 organizations serving Larimer and Weld Counties.


 

Governor Polis also extended the disaster emergency declaration due to COVID-19 in Colorado for an additional 30 days. Governor Polis also swore in the Rabbi for the Colorado National Guard today. 


 

 View the Governor’s press conference. 

© 2018 Susan Lontine