White House Suggests Tougher Rules in Louisiana
BATON ROUGE, La. (AP) — The White House’s coronavirus advisers are urging Louisiana to step up its restrictions to combat the spread of COVID-19. The call to ratchet up Louisiana's efforts to contain the virus comes as the number of hospitalized virus patients edged higher Thursday amid a third wave of infections. Gov. John Bel Edwards continues to sound the alarm about the latest spike. He expressed concern that people won’t take precautions and will gather as usual in packed houses for the Thanksgiving holiday. The Democratic governor says he doesn't intend to return Louisiana to a stay-at-home order but is willing to consider adding more restrictions.
BATON ROUGE, La. (AP) — Louisiana will run out of federal coronavirus money before it pays out grants to all eligible small businesses and local government agencies seeking dollars from COVID-19 aid programs. Officials running the programs told the House and Senate budget committee Friday they received more applications than the dollars allocated by Gov. John Bel Edwards and lawmakers. The money comes from direct coronavirus aid that Louisiana received from Congress. Lawmakers earmarked nearly $525 million to reimburse local government agencies’ virus-related expenses. They steered another $260 million to small business grants. The Edwards administration says it has $431 million in outstanding, eligible reimbursement applications from local governments that it can't pay.