Idaho Budget Writers Approve $2 Million For Coronavirus Response

Mar 6, 2020

Credit State of Idaho

An Idaho legislative committee has voted to dedicate money to help the state respond to a potential coronavirus outbreak.

On Friday, the legislative budget committee voted to move $2 million from the general fund to the governor’s emergency fund.

Idaho has no confirmed cases of the virus yet, but it has tested samples collected from 27 people.

“While the individual risk for coronavirus in Idaho is still low, the situation is rapidly evolving and we do expect confirmed cases at some point," said Alex Adams, the administrator of the Idaho Division of Financial Management.

“What we want to do is be as prepared as possible. The support will increase our preparedness. It could be used for medical supplies as well as community mitigation expenses," he said.

That appropriation now goes to the full House for approval.

On Friday morning President Trump signed a bill that will appropriate more than eight billion dollars for coronavirus preparedness and response. Adams says Idaho expects to get at least four-and-a-half million of that.

In the Washington legislature, the Senate voted on Wednesday to pull 100-million from the state’s Rainy Day Fund for local and state coronavirus projects. That now goes to the full House.