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Gov. Beshear: Kentucky’s COVID-19 Vaccination Pace Continues to Accelerate

Crystal Staley or Sebastian Kitchen
https://governor.ky.gov
Office of the Governor
700 Capitol Avenue
Frankfort, KY  40601

Governor highlights vaccination sites with available appointments

FRANKFORT, Ky. (March 25, 2021) – On Thursday, Gov. Andy Beshear announced the pace of Kentucky’s COVID-19 vaccination efforts continues to accelerate.

“As of today, we’re right at 1.25 million Kentuckians who have received at least their first dose of the COVID-19 vaccine. That is more than 36% of our adult population, which is really exciting,” said Gov. Beshear. “This is the pace we want to keep up.”

The Governor highlighted vaccination sites with available appointments and encouraged Kentuckians in Phase 1A, 1B or 1C, as well as any Kentuckians who are 50 and older, to sign up.

Gov. Beshear said on March 29, all Kentuckians 40 and older will be eligible for all three highly effective COVID-19 vaccines, although vaccination sites will continue to prioritize older individuals.

Finally, the Governor announced three new regional vaccination sites:

  • Paul B. Hall Regional Medical Center – 625 James S. Trimble Blvd., Paintsville, KY 41240
  • Casey County Hospital – 187 Wolford Ave., Liberty, KY 42539
  • Jane Todd Crawford Hospital – 202-206 Milby St., Greensburg, KY 42743

Kentuckians can see all regional vaccination sites, as well as lists of other vaccination sites organized by provider brand and program, here.

Case Information
As of 4 p.m. Thursday, March 25, Gov. Beshear reported the following COVID-19 numbers:

New cases today: 726
New deaths today: 19
New audit deaths: 88
Positivity rate: 2.92%
Total deaths: 5,970
Currently hospitalized: 403
Currently in ICU: 106
Currently on ventilator: 49

Top counties with the most positive cases today are: Jefferson, Fayette, Scott and Kenton. Each county reported at least 30 new cases.

To see a list of those reported lost to the virus today, click here.

Today, the Governor reported no deaths from long-term care facilities.

“The message to share with the public is how important these vaccines are and just how well they work,” said Dr. Steven Stack, commissioner of the Kentucky Department for Public Health. “This is your shot of hope, it’s our shot of hope and it’s how we get out of this pandemic that has upended our lives for the past year and has taken so many of our loved ones from us.”

Kentucky’s COVID-19 Vaccine Website, vaccine.ky.gov, shows Kentuckians which phase they are in specifically. Individuals can sign up for notifications so state officials can communicate with them when doses become available at new and existing sites. Kentucky’s vaccine map lists regional vaccination partners statewide, so individuals can search their county or region and see how to schedule an appointment. Below the vaccine map, Kentuckians can find additional vaccination sites at Kroger, Walmart and Walgreens stores, as well as independent pharmacies.

Kentucky’s COVID-19 Vaccine Hotline, 855-598-2246 or TTY 855-326-4654 (for deaf or hard-of-hearing Kentuckians), has the same features as the website. Kentuckians can get assistance completing the vaccine eligibility questionnaire and scheduling an appointment when doses are available. The hotline is available 8 a.m. to 7 p.m. EST Monday through Friday.

Free or reduced-cost transportation to and from vaccination appointments is offered by public transit agencies across the commonwealth. These services are already operating in over 90 counties, covering 75% of all counties across Kentucky. Kentuckians can find transportation services near them by heading to kycovid19.ky.gov for a full list of participating public transit agencies and their phone numbers, or by calling the Kentucky COVID-19 Vaccine Hotline.

Unemployment Insurance Update
Today, Amy Cubbage, general counsel for Gov. Beshear, updated Kentuckians on unemployment insurance (UI).

New UI Login and Home Screen Launched
Cubbage said as of Tuesday, more than 24,500 claimants had registered using the new UI interface that is more user-friendly and secure. All users will need to start with the “Click Here to Register” tab and create a new, secure password. The Kentucky Career Center (KCC) homepage will have information and a tutorial video about the new registration process.

U.S. Department of Labor (U.S. DOL) Launches New Website to Assist UI Fraud Victims
The U.S. DOL has launched a new website to help victims of unemployment identity theft. The U.S. DOL attributes much of the widespread surge of fraud attempts on organized criminal factions that acquire stolen identities from previous, unrelated data breaches on the internet.

“Those perpetrators then use that information to file claims on victims in multiple states and try to collect the benefits,” said Cubbage. “This website is a great resource for victims of UI identity theft and houses all the states’ fraud website links.”

$10,200 UI Tax Break
The American Rescue Plan that was signed into law March 11 by President Joe Biden provides tax relief for the first $10,200 of UI benefits sent to people with adjusted gross incomes of less than $150,000 in 2020. By the time the law passed, some Kentuckians had already filed their taxes.

“The IRS is working on a fix that means most people in that situation will not have to take any extra steps, such as sending in an amended tax return, to recoup the taxes they paid but don’t owe per the new rule,” said Cubbage. “IRS staff believe they will be able to automatically issue refunds associated with the $10,200.”

Senate Bill 7
“We get many questions relating to the new Senate Bill 7 (SB 7) that the Governor signed to waive requests from the state for claimants to repay unemployment overpayments,” said Cubbage. “The Kentucky Office of Unemployment Insurance is reviewing the language in SB 7 and will be working with U.S. DOL’s federal guidance in order to implement the new waiver program as quickly as possible.”

Virtual Appointment Tips
“If you have a virtual appointment, please make sure you have your cellphone’s spam filter turned off or you may not receive our call, as we use Amazon Connect to dial out to you,” said Cubbage. “Last week there were 625 scheduled appointments, and staff assisted 577 claimants. There were 48 that did not answer the phone or email. Staff make every effort to reach out to the Kentuckian with each appointment and resolve their issue.”

Kentucky Career Centers Opening
Kentucky Career Centers are opening in mid-April to in-person UI services. There will be 13 locations in Bowling Green, Covington, Elizabethtown, Hazard, Hopkinsville, Lexington, Louisville, Morehead, Ashland, Owensboro, Paducah, Prestonsburg and Somerset.

“Kentuckians will be able to make an appointment using the same program as we use for the virtual appointments today online,” Cubbage said. “Watch the KCC website for the launch of the appointment system for these in person services.”

Not only will claimants be able to receive assistance with UI but they will have access to the many other resources available in the career center such as: assistance with finding a job, assistance with job training and apprenticeship opportunities, vocational rehabilitation services and adult education services, such as the free GED program that is being offered for first-time test takers.

$2.1 Million Grant for Postsecondary Education from James Graham Brown Foundation
Lt. Gov. Jacqueline Coleman announced the James Graham Brown Foundation has awarded $2.1 million to the Kentucky Council on Postsecondary Education (CPE) for a new, first-of-its-kind initiative, the Kentucky Student Success Collaborative, which will improve equity on college campuses. To learn more, see the full release.

“While several states across the country have launched similar centers at the postsecondary level, Kentucky’s will be the first to work with both two- and four-year institutions, linking campuses with businesses, community leaders, state policy-makers and national foundations,” said Lt. Gov. Coleman. “We owe the James Graham Brown Foundation a great deal of gratitude for this generous gift. It is the largest privately funded grant that CPE has ever received.”

Debris Disposal Grant Funding Available for Qualifying Counties After Flooding
Lt. Gov. Coleman said Gov. Beshear and Energy and Environment Cabinet Secretary Rebecca Goodman announced that grants up to $25,000 are available to qualifying counties for flood debris cleanup. Grants will be made available to the 48 counties with declared states of emergency associated with March flooding and can be used to cover the cost of collecting, transporting and disposing of municipal solid waste resulting from flooding. For more information, see the full release.

$19.3 Million in GEER II Funding for Education
Today, Lt. Gov. Coleman said Gov. Beshear announced $19.3 million in federal funds have been awarded to Kentucky from the second round of the Governor’s Emergency Education Relief Fund 2 (GEER II) for educational support services due to the COVID-19 pandemic. These funds will provide student mental health services; family support; college, career and transition services for students; and assistance for college-bound students and families in need. To learn more, see the full release.

Nucor to Build $164 Million Tube Mill in Gallatin County
Today, Gov. Beshear announced Nucor Tubular Products, a division of steel products manufacturer Nucor Corp., plans to build a $164 million tube mill and create 72 full-time jobs in Ghent, marking a significant step forward in the Governor’s mission to create well-paying, high-quality jobs across the commonwealth. To learn more, see the full release.

Severe Weather Threatens Kentucky This Afternoon, Evening
Gov. Beshear today warned Kentuckians that strong to severe thunderstorms are expected late this afternoon and this evening across the commonwealth. Damaging winds, isolated tornadoes and heavy rainfall are expected. The areas of greatest risk for severe weather and for a potential strong tornado are Southwestern and South Central Kentucky. To learn more, see the full release.

More Information
To view the full daily report, incidence rate map, information on testing locations, vaccines, contact tracing, school reports and guidance, guidance for health care providers and the White House Coronavirus Task Force reports for Kentucky and more, visit kycovid19.ky.gov.

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