WILMINGTON, Del. – U.S. Senator Chris Coons (D-Del.) joined Peter MacArthur this morning on WDEL to discuss efforts to secure additional COVID-19 relief for Delaware.

“We've got bipartisan agreement on a few key pieces, but so far, the Republicans who control the Senate haven’t agreed to any more aid for state or local governments, to any more support for nutrition or food programs at a time when our food bank and food banks across the country are feeding a record number of Delawareans,” Senator Coons said. “I’m hoping we can secure aid for the state of Delaware, for our nutrition programs, and for the safe reopening of schools.”

Full audio is available here. A transcript is provided below.

Q: In terms of the CARES Act, which you mentioned, this has gotten a little bit behind in the headlines with all the other stuff that's going on, but it does hang in the balance. And what are you hoping to get done specifically as you head back to DC?

Sen. Coons: Well, four months ago, as you know, Peter, we passed unanimously a 2.3 trillion dollar package that included a lot of important things: aid for state and local governments, support for schools and hospitals, the loans that have become grants for many nonprofits and small businesses, the PPP program, and I helped write some of those small business provisions. We've got bipartisan agreement on a few key pieces, but so far, the Republicans who control the Senate haven’t agreed to any more aid for state or local governments, to any more support for nutrition or food programs at a time when our food bank and food banks across the country are feeding a record number of Delawareans. And they’re imposing some requirements or restrictions on aid that I frankly will have difficulty agreeing to. I think if we are serious about it, we can get a bipartisan deal, but it requires President Trump being clear that he wants a deal empowering his Secretary of the Treasury, Steven Mnuchin, to actually get a deal done. Speaker Pelosi has already agreed to come down by almost two trillion dollars from the bill the House passed two months ago. The art of compromise is finding the middle. So far, President Trump has tried to do by executive order - executive orders that haven’t really worked - what we should be doing through legislation. It’ll be a busy couple of days - we have just a few weeks left until the end of this session because most will be heading back to their states for the general election. And I’m hoping we can secure aid for the state of Delaware, for our nutrition programs, and for the safe reopening of schools.

Q: The problem being the longer it drags on, Senator, the harder it is to put a timeframe on when a resolution will be reached, isn’t it?

Sen. Coons: That’s right, and Peter, I keep hearing from business owners, from nonprofit leaders up and down the state that first round of PPP loans to grants was helpful, was supportive, but it's run out and they need another round of support.

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