Tester Urges Congressional Leadership to Include Montana Priorities in 3rd COVID-19 Legislative Package

Senator outlines needs of workers and businesses on the ground, shares proposed solutions directly from Montanans

U.S. Senator Jon Tester today continued his aggressive push to make sure that Washington does not leave Montana behind in its response to the outbreak of the 2019 novel coronavirus (COVID-19) by pressing Senate Leadership to include key priorities for Montana workers, schools, small businesses, Tribes, and local governments-that he’s heard directly from folks on the ground-in any “Phase III” legislative package.

“As the U.S. Senate works on a potential third COVID-19 package, I urge you to focus on addressing the effects this crisis is having on mainstreet businesses, rural communities, working families and institutions of higher education,” wrote Tester. “I am spending many hours a day calling Montanans to directly hear about how COVID-19 is impacting Montana communities and gather their good ideas. Montanans stand ready to do their part. I ask that as we address the urgent health care crisis facing our nation, we also provide targeted assistance to the pillars of all of our communities as outlined above.”

Tester has been reaching out to Montana workers, business leaders, local government officials, Tribal members, and educators across the state to hear directly from folks on the ground about the public health and economic effects of the outbreak and what policy solutions would provide the most relief.

This week, he also held a Facebook Town Hall from his office in Washington, DC, where he fielded questions from Montanans and provided an update on his work to support folks in the Treasure State during the pandemic.

Tester has been working tirelessly to ensure that Montana is prepared to deal with the COVID-19 outbreak. He has introduced legislation-now law-to guarantee testing for the virus will be at zero cost, passed bipartisan legislation through the Senate to ensure veterans GI benefits are protected during the outbreak, and successfully pushed the Treasury Department to extend the IRS tax filing deadline. He has also doubled down on his efforts to press the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) and Indian Health Service to provide veterans, VA healthcare staff, and Tribes with access to proper resources and information.

Tester concluded, “As the nation weathers this unprecedented pandemic, I am acutely concerned about the primary issues that I am hearing from Montanans – supporting our workers, businesses, localities, and schools. As such, I urge you to take swift action in crafting a bipartisan stimulus package to address these critical concerns.”

Read Tester’s full letter outlining Montana’s priorities HERE.

Montanans can find COVID-19 resources on Tester’s website HERE.