Mark Harris

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As the Second Session of the 65th Idaho Legislature comes to an end and though there were many bills and legislation to be worked on this last week, it is the Coronavirus that is the issue everyone is talking about and is on everyone’s mind.

Idaho currently has 23 positive cases and we are expecting more in the coming weeks. The Governor has formed a task force to act on the crisis as cases begin to show up across the state. Early last week, the Legislature appropriated $2 million to be added to $4.5 million that will come from the federal government. This money will be used for testing, supplies, and care.

Testing has been an issue as I have received several letters and calls from constituents concerned with the testing and the delayed reporting time for the tests to come back. Idaho has a state testing lab but more are needed. The Governor’s office reported to the Senate this morning that more private testing labs have been set up around the state and more will possibly be on their way. This should help in the delay time. The legislature will continue to be involved and help where we can.

In the meantime, it is important to remember we are all in this together and we will pull through together. It is important to follow the CDC guidelines by avoiding large groups of people, use drive though instead of going to restaurants and avoid discretionary travel and shopping. It is also important to remember to check on our friends and neighbors, especially the elderly and those with small children, to make sure they have what they need.

This has been an interesting and busy legislative session. It is an honor and privilege to serve as your State Senator. It is a humbling experience that I take very seriously. I appreciate those that have reached out with your concerns and views on the issues. I know some may not agree with some of the votes I have taken. Not all the issues are easy and there is always more than one view. Even though the session is over, my work to represent you is not. I always invite you to reach out to me with any concerns at mharris@senate.idaho.gov

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