Nebraska Joint Information Center Update
RELEASE DATE: Apr 03, 2020
According to the CDC website, there are 232,279 COVID-19 cases in the United States and 5,443 deaths (Updated 4/1/2020). Cases have been reported in all U.S. states, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, Guam, Northern Mariana Islands and the U.S. Virgin Islands. These statistics include both confirmed and presumptive positive cases of COVID-19.
Gov. Pete Ricketts’ Office https://governor.nebraska.gov/
NEW At his daily news conference, Gov. Ricketts reminded people to continue to practice physical distancing and to follow directed health measures imposed in 56 counties in Nebraska.
An alphabetical list of all counties under a DHM is available online here. If you have concerns about a directed health measure contact your local health department or the Nebraska Department of Health and Human Services.
NEW At Thursday night’s televised town hall aired on NET, Gov. Ricketts addressed why he has not issued a statewide stay-at-home measure. With advice from medical experts, Ricketts called for a regional approach using the state’s public health regions to determine when more restrictive measures should be implemented.
“What we are trying to do to time the directed healthcare measure to be able to get the maximum impact out of it. If you go too early, people will get tired of it doing it and they can start breaking the ban just when you need them to actually do it the most. If you do it too late, you will miss the benefit of doing it at all. We are doing a plan that right’s for Nebraska. We have to be in this for the long haul.”
To view the hour-long program visit: http://netnebraska.org/interactive-multimedia/news/speaking-nebraska-covid-19-town-hall-governor-ricketts-406-0
NEW The Nebraska Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) data dashboard provides daily updates to the state’s COVID-19 case totals and is online at http://dhhs.ne.gov/coronavirus
As of April 2 at noon, the current case numbers for Nebraska are:
279 positive tests
4,487 negative tests,
Numbers now include negative results from NPHL and commercial labs. Both state and local health departments are testing and publicly reporting their cases. In the event of a discrepancy between DHHS cases and cases reported by local public health officials, data reported by the local health department should be considered the most up-to-date.
Nebraska COVID-19 Information Line: (402) 552-6645. Hours are: 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. CST – every day.
State agencies are sharing information using the #NECOVID19 Hashtag
Health Care Provider Information (HAN)
Nebraska Emergency Management Agency https://nema.nebraska.gov/news
NEMA continues to operate the State Emergency Operations Center (SEOC) with daily conference calls among the emergency support function coordinators and public information officers. NEMA also is working to support DHHS as the lead agency in the COVID-19 response in Nebraska
REMINDER There is no essential staffing list maintained by the State of Nebraska for people who have jobs to perform. Individuals leaving their homes in order to perform an activity or function for their jobs DO NOT need to carry or present any letter, identification card or other paper proving that they are allowed to leave their home.
Attorney General’s Office COVID-19 Information
Scammers and others may use COVID-19 as an opportunity to defraud Nebraskans. Learn more about potential COVID-19 scams at ProtectTheGoodLife.Nebraska.Gov. If you suspect fraud, file a consumer complaint or send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Department of Administrative Services
A number of State agencies and private organizations have received inquiries from Nebraska manufacturers that have the capabilities to provide needed medical equipment for hospitals and medical providers. The Nebraska Department of Administrative Services (DAS) has partnered with the Nebraska Manufacturing Extension Partnership (NMEP) to help organize the manufacturers with these capabilities and connect them with the medical community.
For manufacturers please visit https://go.unl.edu/criticalmanufacturing to register your company and list the products your company is able to produce in short deadlines.
For people in the medical community that want to access these companies and order needed supplies, please contact:
Doug Carlson, Chief Procurement Officer for the State of Nebraska
For more information on services the NMEP can provide for Nebraska manufacturing businesses.
Department of Agriculture (NDA) nda.nebraska.gov
NDA has a COVID-19 webpage available to the public with information pertaining to agricultural producers. Go to nda.nebraska.gov/COVID-19 for more information.
Department of Banking and Finance
NEW Gov. Ricketts signed Executive Order 2020-13 on April 1 and it provides regulatory flexibility to financial institutions under the jurisdiction of the Nebraska Department of Banking and Finance. The order gives the department flexibility on conducting installment loan company exams, temporarily extends the time for financial institutions to submit annual audits, and enables the department to accept various applications in electronic format. The order also authorizes the Nebraska Secretary of State to immediately implement the online Notary Act.
Department of Corrections corrections.nebraska.gov
NEW NDCS has released updated information regarding its response to COVID-19. Starting today, all staff are required to wear face masks while at work. Two new videos have been posted on https://corrections.nebraska.gov/ndcs-coronavirus-health-update. One focuses on mask expectations. The other focuses on NDCS teammate COVID-19 precautions.
Department of Economic Development https://opportunity.nebraska.gov/nded-covid19/
DED is working to inform and assist businesses during Nebraska’s ongoing response to COVID-19. Information for businesses is available on the DED website. DED is committed to serving Nebraskans facing financial challenges during this time, and understands that local economic leaders will play an important role in creating regional solutions for businesses and their workforce. The department’s Field Services Team is working with business leaders in these regions to address ongoing COVID-19 challenges.
Department of Environment and Energy http://dee.ne.gov
NDEE has developed a COVID-19 information webpage that includes a message from the Director, links to state and federal resources, and NDEE-related issues. Webpage address is: http://deq.ne.gov/NDEQProg.nsf/onWeb/COVID
Department of Insurance
Today, the NDOI issued a notice to all insurance producers stating that a 90-day temporary resident insurance license will be issued to Nebraska insurance producers who fulfill the requirements.
Department of Labor NEworks.nebraska.gov and dol.nebraska.gov
NEW Gov. Ricketts announced an update to his Executive Order that extends unemployment insurance waivers through August 1. He reminded people to not quit their jobs in order to get unemployment. “If you quit your job, you are not eligible of unemployment benefits,” Ricketts said.
The federal CARES Act created a temporary program that offers benefits to individuals not eligible for regular unemployment insurance benefits including the self-employed, independent contractors, gig workers, and others. This act also increases the amount an individual will receive by $600 for every week an individual is unemployed. Once the Department receive guidance from the Federal Government, all individuals who qualify will receive $600 in additional benefits for each eligible week of unemployment, including prior weeks.
Department of Motor Vehicles DMV news releases
Department of Revenue Revenue Ruling 99-20-1: All Nebraska Taxes, Signature Requirements
NEW You can now file your Petition for Redetermination (Protest) Electronically. This applies to Notices of Deficiency Determinations issued by the Nebraska Department of Revenue (DOR). This does not apply to protests or appeals filed with the Property Assessment Division.
The Nebraska Department of Revenue (DOR) has issued new guidance with specific instructions and information regarding signature requirements, which will assist taxpayers, especially in situations where the individuals responsible for signing tax returns are working from home to prevent the spread of COVID-19. For most forms and filings, for which there is no separate DOR taxpayer filing system, DOR will accept as a taxpayer signature, any mark, handwritten or digitally rendered that is applied with actual or apparent intention to authenticate the filing. More information is available at the Nebraska Department of Revenue website revenue.nebraska.gov; or contact the Department by email or phone here.
Nebraska Lottery players with prizes up to $19,999 are encouraged to claim by mail. Instructions for claiming prizes by mail can be found at https://nelottery.com/homeapp/article/4220/display Regional Lottery Claim Centers in Grand Island, Norfolk, North Platte, and Scottsbluff are closed to the public, but Nebraska Lottery headquarters in Lincoln and the Omaha Claim Center are open. Call 402-471-6100 to confirm office hours before claiming a prize in person at these locations.
Department of Natural Resources To support National Flood Insurance Program policyholders amid the COVID-19 pandemic, FEMA is extending its 30-day grace period for policy renewals up to 120 days. This is effective for National Flood Insurance Program policies with an expiration date between February 13 – June 15, 2020.
For more information, visit the FEMA website https://nfipservices.floodsmart.gov/
FEMA also has some guidance on flood insurance claims during this time. It allows for the claims to be adjusted remotely without an adjustor visiting the property.
Our agency also continues to ensure that critical water related information remains available (see https://dnr.nebraska.gov/). It is being updated continuously, including real-time streamgaging information.
Department of Veterans’ Affairs
The Nebraska Department of Veterans' Affairs is hiring at all four veterans' homes, with openings for food service workers, housekeepers, RNs, LPNs, CNAs and more. If you are interested in becoming a CNA, we offer CNA classes that pay an hourly wage during training, pay for supplies and the certification exam, and come with a job in the facility upon completion of the training. Our teammates have great state benefits, job security, a friendly work environment, and a chance to serve those who served. Join our team of heroes helping heroes. Find openings and apply at statejobs.nebraska.gov. Applicants can expect to have a virtual interview rather than in-person
Game and Parks Commission http://outdoornebraska.gov/healthinfo/
NEW In a proactive effort to prevent the potential for spread of COVID-19 (coronavirus), the Nebraska Game and Parks Commission will prohibit overnight camping at state parks, state recreation areas and wildlife management areas starting Monday, April 6 through Friday, May 8, with a possible extension.
In addition, the closure of state park area lodging and cabins will be extended through May 8.
The Nebraska Department of Health and Human Services recommends travelers coming to Nebraska or back to Nebraska from out-of-state should limit public interactions, practice strict social distancing, self-monitor for symptoms and self-quarantine for 14 days.
State parks and recreation areas will remain open for day use so guests may enjoy activities such as fishing, hiking, biking and wildlife viewing while maintaining proper physical distancing of at least six feet. A limited number of restrooms, which will be disinfected regularly using Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) protocols, will be available.
The closures are in keeping with national recommendations from the CDC; cities and states across the nation are taking similar proactive measures to prevent the spread of the virus. Game and Parks’ top priority is the health and well-being of the public and its staff.
Refunds will be given to campers who have prepaid fees. The camping closure will be reevaluated in the future to determine if an extension is necessary.
Those still enjoying outdoor recreation should follow CDC guidelines. They include staying home for people who are sick, have knowingly been exposed to a sick individual or are coming from any area of community spread of the virus. People also should avoid crowds, adhere to the 10-person-limit guideline, and bring supplies from home, including food and hygiene products, disinfecting wipes and hand sanitizer.
For a list of all Game and Parks cancellations, postponements and closures, go to OutdoorNebraska.org/healthinfo. For more detailed information about how coronavirus cancellations may affect customers, check the Frequently Asked Questions page at OutdoorNebraska.gov/covid19faqs or use the Contact Us form at OutdoorNebraska.gov/contact. Past news release are available online: http://magazine.outdoornebraska.gov/category/news/
Please do not contact local units or the Nebraska National Guard headquarters directly with requests for assistance.
Nebraska Commission for the Deaf and Hard of Hearing (NCDHH)
NEW NCDHH has the following VLOGs online relating to COVID-19:
COVID-19: Educational Resources & Communication Access NCDHH Executive Director John Wyvill discusses the importance of ensuring you and your child are prepared and receiving education information during transition to remote-learning.
COVID-19: Deaf and Hard of Hearing Organizations Stress Importance of Communication Access NCDHH Behavioral Health Coordinator Carly Weyers provides information on how to best keep informed with full communication access on announcements related to COVID-19.
COVID-19: NCDHH Offices and Social Distancing Information regarding preventative measures to keep you and the NCDHH team healthy featuring Behavioral Health Coordinator, Carly Weyers.
Nebraska State Patrol
The Nebraska State Patrol (NSP) continues to encourage drivers to follow all traffic laws. Any motorist can report a dangerous driver by calling the NSP Highway Helpline at *55 or 800-525-5555.
Nebraska State Treasurer’s Office
Due to the COVID-19 health crisis, the Unclaimed Property Division offices are closed to the public. Treasurer’s Office staff are available by phone at 402-471-8497 or 877-572-9688 and will continue to process claims mailed into the Lincoln office or filed online.
Office of the Chief Information Officer Website
Malicious cyber threat actors are capitalizing on the global attention surrounding COVID-19 to facilitate scams, distribute malware, and send phishing emails. We ask all Nebraskans to practice the following safe security habits online:
Exercise caution in handling any email with a COVID-19-related subject line, attachment or hyperlink, and be wary of social media pleas, texts or calls related to COVID-19. (Tips for Avoiding Social Engineering and Phishing Attacks: https://www.us-cert.gov/ncas/tips/ST04-014)
Avoid clicking on links in unsolicited emails and be wary of email attachments. (Tips for Using Caution with Email Attachments: https://www.us-cert.gov/ncas/tips/ST04-010)
Use trusted sources—such as legitimate, government websites—for up-to-date, fact-based information about COVID-19.
Look at the email address, not just the sender. A genuine email from a legitimate organization would have the organization’s name in the domain name, indicating that it is coming from someone at the organization.
Do not reveal personal or financial information in an email, and do not respond to email solicitations for this information.
Verify a charity’s authenticity before making donations.
Look for obvious grammatical errors and be wary of any emails that have implied consequences for failure to comply with demands.
Homeland Security is encouraging state, local, tribal, and territorial (SLTT) governments to reference known official resources on COVID-19 information. Members can read more about COVID-19 related scams at the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) resource here.
Public Service Commission
Please visit the PSC COVID-19 Information & Guidance page for the latest from the Nebraska Public Service Commission.
State Partner Updates
American Red Cross
NEW Even during a pandemic, other disasters don’t stop—and neither does the work of the Red Cross.
We continue to offer essential courses such as resuscitation, CPR and first aid—which helps medical professionals and other workers stay current on their certifications.
Our brave volunteers are still responding to disasters like home fires, tornadoes and earthquakes, so impacted families receive help and hope—even during these trying times.
The American public can help “flatten the curve” by practicing social distancing, staying home as much as possible, washing their hands, and taking other precautions to stay healthy.
Help the American Red Cross deliver its lifesaving mission nationwide during this public health emergency by donating at redcross.org.
NEW Natural Resources Districts (NRDs):
Individual NRDs will decide on closures of their local recreation areas. The public should visit http://www.nrdnet.org/recreation to find contact information for the specific recreation area to find out about closures/limitations.
A majority of NRD physical offices are closed to the public; however, NRD employees continue to work and answer phones/email to provide service to the public.
NEW Panhandle Public Health District
Scotts Bluff County Health Department,
Region 21 Emergency Management
Region 22 Emergency Management and
Region 23 Emergency Management
Public health and emergency managers in the panhandle released the following recommendations for calf branding operations this year during the COVID-19 Pandemic:
This year needs to be strictly business.
Limit the crew size to the smallest crew possible to get the job done.
Stay home if you are sick.
Leave grandparents, children and high-risk individuals at home.
Use a calf table, if possible.
Guidance for meals:
Bring a sack lunch or pack a lunch, if possible.
If buffet style, have servers wear gloves.
Serve food and eat outside when possible.
Practice social distancing.
Keep your distance in line and while eating.
Do not share drinks.
Bandanas may limit exposure.
These are unprecedented times. Thank you for doing your part to flatten the curve.