KANSAS CITY, Kan. — Millions of dollars more in federal aid is headed to Kansas after President Trump signs $484 billion in additional assistance for small businesses and hospitals.
The new money replenishes the depleted Paycheck Protection Program, provides more money to hospitals fighting the pandemic and expands testing capacity, which has become a big issue in Kansas.
Kansas is getting $21 million in this second round of funding to expand COVID-19 testing.
The state currently has performed fewer coronavirus tests than any other in the nation.
“We still have a long way to go,” said U.S. Sen. Jerry Moran, R – Kansas. “Even with this plus-up of money, and while $21 million is coming to the state of Kansas, there is a significant amount of money in the bill beyond that, $25 billion total. $14 billion of that is to do research to get us to the point in which we have tests and a vaccine that could replace the necessity of testing over time.”
Moran also called the funding boost “insufficient” to meet the goal of broad-based virus testing desired for a open economy.
Moran says during the first round of $350 billion in small business loans, Kansas firms with fewer than 500 workers received $4.28 billion in aid.
Moran says that helped to preserve 427,000 jobs across the Sunflower State.
The new aid package also includes money for agriculture.
Livestock processing plants in Kansas are going to get help to make sure they can continue to provide meat for hungry American consumers.
As for reopening the economy, Moran says those should be decentralized decisions made by local leaders, because each area of Kansas can be very different from another.