Madison, WI – State Representative Tony Kurtz voted to support the COVID-19 Response Bill to address the challenges that people around the State of Wisconsin are facing due to the coronavirus outbreak. This extensive bill will assist out of work Wisconsinites while working to secure the millions of dollars in federal dollars that have been allocated through the federal CARES Act. The Assembly approved the bill during Tuesday’s historic extraordinary session, which was done with some of the representatives participating virtually for the first time in state history.

“This truly has been an unprecedented time in history,” said Rep. Kurtz. “I’m pleased my Assembly colleagues and I could come together on this bipartisan bill to help the people of Wisconsin.”

The COVID-19 Response Bill eliminates the one-week waiting period for unemployment insurance benefits. The change would be applied retroactively to claims made after March 12 and will run until February 7, 2021. Additionally, the bill prohibits health insurance coverage discrimination based on COVID-19 and ensures there are no co-pays for COVID-19 testing. It eases licensing requirements for health care professionals and emergency medical responders.

Passage of the bill will ensure that Wisconsin will receive the entire $2 billion in federal assistance that Governor Evers has sole discretion over spending. Assembly Republicans have asked the governor to prioritize the needs of the health care industry, workers, small businesses and local governments when allocating these dollars.

The bill now heads to the Senate for consideration on Wednesday.

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