The influx of taxpayers’ money was paid to everything from masks, hospital beds, student laptops to unemployment hotlines and additional workers for contact tracking.
The fight against COVID-19 in California has cost taxpayers at least $ 12.3 billion since the start of the pandemic.
This exceeds the gross domestic product of 50 countries. More than the combined value of the Dodgers, Yankees and Giants. Last year’s General Motors profits almost doubled. Enough to give $ 313 to all Californians.
This does not include federal $ 110 billion to increase unemployment and federal incentives, rent aid and corporate lending that were largely closed last year.
STate Finance Official Total government costs From about 40 categories, we have estimated $ 12.3 billion for the “total pandemic direct emergency response” from 2020 to 2022.
What did our federal and state taxes buy?
The large amount of N95 respiratory and surgical masks desperately sought by healthcare professionals in the early days of the pandemic Controversial $ 1.4 Billion Contract..
Hundreds of millions of gowns and plastic gloves.
Extra bed in the hospital.
A medical interpreter who speaks hundreds of languages.
Student laptops suddenly rushed into distance learning.
Temporary workers to track the contact of infected people and answer hotlines flooded by unemployed Californians seeking profit.
One of the biggest price tags was a state prison. 227 infected prisoners He died and the fight against COVID-19 cost nearly $ 1.6 billion.Other big price tags: $ 1.8 billion virus testing, and $ 1.1 billion lab equipment Overloaded Public Health Institute..
$ 12.3 billion may sound like a lot to a single state. But Adam Rose, an economist at the University of Southern California, details high stakes. Estimate The cost of life lost to COVID-19 in the United States could exceed $ 6.2 trillion and the overall impact could be an additional $ 5 trillion. The financial burden of the pandemic far outweighs that of the Great Recession, Rose said.
Over 63,000 Californians have died of COVID-19.
“If you save 1,000 lives, that’s a $ 10 billion savings. If you don’t do anything, the situation will get worse,” said Rose, who studies disaster economics. “You will pay in some way.”
Much of the money spent in California comes from or is coming soon from the federal government.Congress approved more to see it $ 5 trillion in COVID-19 related relief spending — More than all federal spending in 2019.
Hiring and training new case investigators and contact tracers requires $ 233 million in government funding. Part of that money was sent to California Department of Transportation analyst Allison Bush Lovejoy. She said last year she was “voluntary” to help track down COVID-19 cases in the Los Angeles area. $ 8.7 million training programOperated by UCLA and UCSF health professionals, it supports the overwhelming county health sector.
“It challenged me as a human being,” said Bush Lovejoy, who lives in Humboldt County. “Sometimes in the hospital, talking to a very sick person was a difficult task. Honoring the person you are talking to has always been a challenge.”
Nearly $ 1.4 billion in federal and state funding supported a large-scale immunization campaign in California. Rocky rollout We have seen over 20 million Californians fully immunized.
Early on, the money funded the operation of a mass vaccination clinic that could provide thousands and $ 50 million a day. Problematic MyTurn Reservation and vaccine tracking system.
Still, vaccination advances are uneven across the state, lagging vaccination rates among rural counties, low-income communities, and black and Latino Californians. Currently, federal and state funds are being used to reach people who are hesitant or inaccessible to vaccines through door-to-door vaccination drives, telephone banking, and special events.
This month, state and local health officials hosted a pop-up clinic and festival of vaccinations before a football match at PayPal Park Stadium in San Jose. The first 155 immunized people received free tickets for an exhibition match between two popular Mexican soccer teams.
The event brought together Rosa Vargas and her boyfriend Isidro Velázquez from Madera in the San Joaquin Valley. Velázquez, who has already been vaccinated, said he sees Vargas as a good opportunity for final immunization. You will also get two free tickets for sold-out matches.
Dr. Gerald Solorio Cortez, a Gilroy-based primary care physician who oversees the pop-up clinic, has attracted hundreds of people, including almost all Latino Americans, and thought the festival’s money was well spent. It was. “What is a better way to get people vaccinated?” He said.
California food banks receive approximately $ 230 million in state and federal cash grants and USDA boxed food deliveries. This was a coveted boost for Silicon Valley’s Second Harvest, which doubled food demand in the early days of the pandemic.
Tracy Weatherby, vice president of strategy and advocacy at the food bank, said:
According to Weatherby, the food bank used the money to buy 15 tractor trailers and rent another warehouse to launch a home food delivery program. Soon, the food bank provided about 500,000 people with fresh produce, meat, milk, rice, beans and other foods, up from 250,000 before the pandemic.
Government officials also funded 140 National Guard members and 100 San Jose Conservation Members to assist food bank staff while volunteers were at home.
“Double people and double food,” Weatherby said. “That’s what we’ve been dealing with.”
Prior to the pandemic, government grants accounted for 5-6% of the food bank’s budget, with other support from companies, nonprofits, and individuals. Last year, support doubled to about 12%, according to Weatherby.
According to Weatherby, food banks are expected to continue to double in circulation.
“We don’t think that need has diminished yet, and we hope it won’t diminish for years,” Weatherby said. “People are in very, very deep holes.”
Cost of fighting COVID in California: $12.3 billion Source link Cost of fighting COVID in California: $12.3 billion