Gov. Polis answers questions about testing, restaurants, travel in Thursday update

Coronavirus

DENVER — In a press conference Thursday, Gov. Jared Polis answered questions about testing, restaurants, and travel to Colorado’s mountain communities as the state begins to reopen amid the coronavirus pandemic.

“While Colorado is returning to greater normalcy and more Coloradans safely return to work, older Coloradans and those with underlying health conditions should continue staying home as much as possible,” said Governor Jared Polis. “We are proud of the progress Coloradans have made over the last months, but everyone needs to continue taking the serious necessary precautions to protect ourselves and our neighbors. We are all in this together, and we will get through this together. This is a difficult time for many people in our state, but we can’t lose sight of what is at stake if we don’t follow social distancing protocols, wash our hands, or wear masks when leaving the house.”

The Governor was joined via video chat by his 76-year old mother, Susan, who has been staying at home since early March and will continue to do so through June, to help emphasize the importance of older Coloradans and seniors staying at home during this pandemic to protect their health.

The pair also discussed ways to communicate with family members and loved ones during this challenging time.

The Governor announced that the state’s Care Facility Task Force has completed 747 infection control surveys, including 100% of all nursing homes in the state. These surveys are critical for the state to track the spread of the virus, especially in nursing homes that are particularly vulnerable to outbreaks.

The state has also received and is in the process of reviewing 1,048 isolation plans from congregate-care facilities across the state. These plans are crucial for ensuring that congregate care facilities are taking appropriate steps to protect residents.

Gov. Polis applauded the announcement to extend the Colorado National Guard’s federal deployment until mid-August. Previously, their federal deployment was set to end after just 89 days — one day short of the 90-day threshold for retirement and education benefits. This would have been deeply unfair to Colorado’s national guardsmen and women who are on hiatus from their day jobs so they can be on the front lines fighting this pandemic, and it would have placed more stress on the state budget.

Earlier this month the state announced we would be highlighting businesses that are finding creative ways to make ends meet through this pandemic through the “Can-Do Colorado” Campaign. Today, the Governor highlighted Johnny B. Good’s Diner in Steamboat Springs which has helped seniors and worked to preserve a sense of community at a time when we need it the most.

The Governor today signed Executive Order D 2020 081, amending Executive Order D 2020 070 directing the expenditure of federal funds pursuant to the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act of 2020 (CARES Act). The Executive Order changes the fund source for the accounting of certain CARES Act Fund dollars for education and clarifies the permissible uses of CARES Act Fund dollars for units of local government.

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