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HomeNewsTennessee Governor Bill Lee's COVID-19 Bulletin #14

Tennessee Governor Bill Lee’s COVID-19 Bulletin #14

Tennessee State GovernmentNashville, TN – Today, Tuesday, April 7th, 2020, Tennessee Governor Bill Lee provided an update on Tennessee’s efforts regarding Coronavirus (COVID-19) relief.

Governor Lee’s daily press conferences can be viewed live this week Monday through Thursday at 3:00pm CT here. Governor Lee has also established a website specific to Coronavirus (COVID-19) updates which can be found here.

Tennessee Governor Bill Lee
Tennessee Governor Bill Lee

Administration Actions

Unemployment Relief/Unemployment for Self-Employed

Coronavirus (COVID-19) has caused record spikes in unemployment with the number of initial claims spiking to more than 250,000 in the last three-week period.

In March, at the onset of the pandemic, Governor Lee directed the Tennessee Department of Labor and Workforce Development to conduct the following actions to support Tennesseans facing unemployment due to Coronavirus (COVID-19), among others:

  • Extend unemployment benefits to those who are quarantined by a physician for Coronavirus (COVID-19)
  • Suspend certain regulations to speed up payment time

As the rate of unemployment claims escalates, the Tennessee Department of Labor and Workforce Development is projected to pay more than 100,000 claims this week. The department is employing additional resources to make this system run more smoothly.

With the passage of the CARES Act, Congress has made more funding available and greater flexibility for Tennesseans during the pandemic. Certain CARES Act provisions are on track to be implemented as early as next week.

Tennessee is also working closely with the federal government to ensure Federal Pandemic Unemployment Compensation for the self-employed or those who file 1099 forms is available as quickly as possible.

Tennesseans out of work can apply for unemployment benefits at www.Jobs4TN.gov.

Paycheck Protection Program and Support for Small Business

The Paycheck Protection Program is a loan designed to provide a direct incentive for small businesses to keep their workers on the payroll. The Small Business Administration will forgive loans if all employees are kept on the payroll for eight weeks and the money is used for payroll, rent, mortgage interest, or utilities.

The Program authorized $350 billion in fully forgivable loans to help small businesses maintain payrolls during the coronavirus pandemic. The program went live on April 2nd, 2020 and is being run through local financial institutions. Additional information can be found here.

Current Department of Health Testing Results (as of 2 p.m. 4/7)

Confirmed Cases Hospitalizations Fatalities   Recovered Total Tests
4,138 408 72   466 52,874


For more information on Coronavirus (COVID-19) in Tennessee, please visit the Tennessee Department of Health’s website here.


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