News from Representative Costa

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Dear Friend,

Sadly, in so much of the west, including California, devastating fires continue to impact communities and our way of life. In the middle of fire season, records are being set for acres burned and poor air quality. That’s why as your Member of Congress, I have been working over the last month on legislation and fire disaster relief through FEMA to provide financial support to those areas that have been devastated by these wildfires. 

There is some good news to report this week from our district work week, including helping schools get the necessary waivers they need to supply nutritious meals to students through the school lunch program. I’m also working to support our local transportation services. Here are the highlights: 


Wildfire efforts and resources

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As the Creek Fire continues to threaten lives and property in Madera, Mariposa, and Fresno counties, I’ve been involved in efforts to ensure both firefighters and affected communities have the resources they need to stay safe and ultimately recover from these devastating losses.

In addition to supporting robust funding for wildfire management and suppression in the Fiscal Year 2021 and 2020  Appropriations bills, I recently cosponsored the Emergency Wildfire and Public Safety Act and the Increase the Federal Disaster Cost Share Act, to strengthen our capacity to implement effective wildfire mitigation projects and increase Federal disaster support. I’ve also sent several letters to support farmworker safety, respond to firefighter emergency needs, secure IRS assistance for those affected, and urge the Administration to declare a major disaster in California due to wildfires. 

CALFire Fire Map:Image/

See More

 

Resources: 


Feeding our students

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Free school meal programs are critical to ensuring students continue to have access to nutritious daily meals, especially during a pandemic. I’m pleased to report an extension of waivers to make free school meals available through the end of the year. I’ve been working hard to secure these meals for our Valley students, most recently leading a bipartisan letter to Secretary Perdue pushing for this change. Over the past few months, I’ve signed on to three additional letters supporting school meal waiver extensions. 


Supporting local transportation services

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The transportation industry has been hit hard by COVID-19, resulting in thousands of furloughed workers, declines in revenue and reduction of services. I recently cosponsored the bipartisan Coronavirus Economic Relief for Transportation Services (CERTS) Act, which would provide $10 billion in emergency economic relief funding to motorcoach operators and other transportation industries, including the Yosemite Area Regional Transit System (YARTS), which supports our local schools. 


Vote by Mail

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Americans can take additional steps to make sure their vote will count:

  • Request your ballot
  • Read all instructions
  • Sign your ballot
  • Seal your ballot
  • Mail it back or drop it off
  • …and do it early!

Information for your County:

MAKE YOUR VOTE COUNT! 


Campus honors

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The Valley is home to some of the best universities in the country. I’m happy to report that my Alma Mater, Fresno State, ranked 7th in Money Magazine’s list of “Most Transformative Colleges.”  Fresno State also ranked 40th as the “Best Public College” and 19th for “Best Colleges Where More Than Half of Applicants Get In.” 

Money Magazine also named UC Merced one of the country’s top 100 schools, and Washington Monthly ranked the university at no. 19 nationally for creating social mobility for our students. 

Go Bulldogs! Go Bobcats!


Bringing home federal dollars

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One of my top priorities is ensuring your tax dollars come back to the district. I’m pleased to report that Fresno Yosemite International Airport (FAT) received over $1 million in federal grant funding for noise mitigation measures for nearby residences. I participated in the groundbreaking event recently for the new Fresno Airport terminal. 

Castle Airport in Atwater also received $1.8 million in grant funding from the Federal Aviation Administration to rehabilitate its runway.


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Local COVID-19 Cases

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Track recent COVID-19 developments in: 

Find a testing center near you:


Resources:

We’ve compiled all the resources you need in one convenient location on our website.  

If you need specific help from our district office, please submit a request and a member of our staff will contact you. 



Recursos en Español 

Hemos concentrada toda la información sobre COVID-19 que necesita en un lugar conveniente. Visita mi sitio web.

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RESOURCES FOR FARMERS IMPACTED BY WILDFIRE

As wildfires continue to rage across our state, farmer’s fields are being affected. If you’ve been impacted by wildfires, there are federal resources that can help. The Emergency Livestock Assistance Program (ELAP) provides assistance to producers for losses due to disease, certain adverse weather events or loss conditions, including blizzards and wildfires.

The Livestock Indemnity Program (LIP) also provides support for producers who have experienced livestock deaths as a result of adverse weather conditions.

Contact your local county USDA Farm Service Agency office to determine your eligibility and which program would best serve your needs.

Learn more about USDA’s disaster assistance programs. 


WATER SMART GRANT APPLICATIONS DUE SOON!

The U.S. Bureau of Reclamation is currently accepting Fiscal Year 2021 applications for WaterSMART Water and Energy Efficiency Grants.

DEADLINE: September 17, 2020

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 TIME TO RENEW YOUR INDIVIDUAL TAXPAYER ID!

At the end of the year some individual taxpayer identification numbers (ITIN) will expire. Taxpayers with expiring ITINs must renew their ID number with the IRS before the end of the year.

Expiring ITINs.

How to renew your ITIN.


USDA ACCEPTING APPLICATIONS 

Organic producers and handlers can apply for federal funding to assist with keeping and receiving organic certification through the Organic Certification Cost Share Program (OCCSP), a farm bill program I advocated for.

Learn more and apply. 

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RESPOND TO CENSUS 2020

Thank you to those of you that have already responded to the 2020 Census.

If you haven’t had a chance yet, now is the perfect time! Make sure you count and help shape our future! IT’S VERY IMPORTANT!

DEADLINE IS SEPTEMBER 30, 2020.

Respond now!



Stay strong and we will get through this crisis. Please don’t hesitate to contact my office if you need assistance.

Sincerely,

 


Jim Costa
Member of Congress

Click here to subscribe to my e-newsletter

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Fresno Office
855 M Street
Suite 940
Fresno, CA 93721
559-495-1620

Merced Office
2222 M Street
Suite 305
Merced, CA 95340
209-384-1620

Washington, DC
2081 Rayburn
House Office Building
Washington, DC 20515
202-225-3341

 

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