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tv   Minnesota Gov. Walz Holds Coronavirus Briefing  CSPAN  November 23, 2020 11:43pm-12:29am EST

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insecurity in the united states. the heritage foundation talks about their recent 2021 index of the u.s. military staff report. watch c-span's washington journal live at 7:00 eastern tuesday morning. be sure to join the discussion with their phone calls, facebook comments, text messages and tweets. tuesday, the nevada state supreme court meets to certify the state's election results. watch on c-span, c spend our group with the free c-span radio app. tuesday, president elect jode biden and vice president elect kamala harris will name key foreign policy and national --urity personnel into including tony blinken as secretary of state, jake sullivan as arsenal security advisor and april haynes as
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director of national intelligence. watch online on seesmic the oracle or listen on the free c-span radio app. minnesota governor tim walz announced monday the state legislature will debate a bipartisan proposal to help small businesses during the pandemic. the governor was joined by state officials who announced a new app to help with state covid-19 contract tracing efforts and to provide an update on covid cases, deaths and hospitalizations. this runs 40 minutes. >> good afternoon, minnesota and good afternoon to our reporters. for those watching or listening at home, we are pulling reporters. will be receiving questions through many of them. i will try to remember to reiterate and repeat the question and then answer it. this last week has been tough.
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there is no other way to put it. our numbers are unrelenting in our hospitalizations. you have seen record set in terms of cases, hospitalizations, icus and unfortunately deaths. our hospitals and first responders are deriving everything -- are doing everything they possibly can. there are reasons to be optimistic over the horizon with a vaccine. there are reasons to be optimistic now that we have new therapeutics. there are also reasons to be optimistic because the data shows if we change our behaviors and take some of the mitigation efforts, there is a cascading effect that keeps people from being infected, keeps people out of the hospital, which saves lives. it is what we asked last week. i want to be very cognizant of what god asked especially of our small businesses and hospitality industry. -- of what we asked especially of our small businesses and hospitality industry.
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asking folks who have been through the most difficult eight most difficult- eight months is a very difficult thing. because of that, we have been asking and pushing that both the federal government, and state government need to do everything we can to mitigate that. i am pleased to say we worked over the entire weekend with our legislative partners. thank to give a special you to the house majority leader who worked on this and to my team putting together a package of relief for small businesses. it is critical we get something quickly to these businesses. get something that makes a material difference in bridges the gap until the federal government can do what they need to do, make a substantial impact on the economics and well-being's of americans bypassing whether it is the hero act or a modified version of the heroes act. as i have said, all 50 governors are unified. the state of minnesota is going to take some of these moves.
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what i would like to say is the package we are going to be putting out tomorrow that we are prepared along with cooperation of the legislature, i am prepared to call them back and pass this legislation immediately. some of the things we are able to do is sales tax forgiveness for businesses that sell food and beverages. wave state regulatory fees, explore direct relief for individual workers. one time food grants to businesses to help homeless shelters and long-term care facilities. this makes financial sense. create a state tax credit for food donations in the hospitality industry and elimination of the covid-19 minnesota fund expiration date. these are a few of the things as part of this package working in conjunction with legislative leaders and working in conjunction with the business community on their effort to put this forward. i want to speak to those witnesses. we hear you.
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we thank you for making a public health move. the closing of doors, you are protecting people. you are ensuring weekend get our economy back. as i have said, you should not have to bear the brunt of the financial impact alone. all minnesotans share in that. i think this package will be a great way to do that. i would reiterate to our federal partners to the outgoing administration and the incoming biden administration, please work together. please find a compromise. please if you have to, move a package now with the idea you will move one later because covid is not going to end at the end of the month. it forces us to make the moves we made. we have also got another announcement today. another tool in our toolbox to slow the spread of covid. the most dangerous part of this disease is the agent to medic spread, especially among mobile
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and social 18 to 35 euros. it is not out of not caring. out ofn many cases ignorance. you are not sick. you try to kate -- to try to take precautions. all of a sudden, you spread it to someone else who spreads it to a long-term care facility or a school. one of the best ways is for people to know if they have been exposed to covid-19, can they and this is what we have insured can happen, get a test in a rapid manner to get a rapid result that they can be informed to take all the proper precautions whether it is quarantining our edifying others they have been infected to be able to rake the chain of spread? what we are doing is with the help of a nonprofit foundation who helped develop an app called covid aware minnesota. it is being used by about 20 states. i have done it.
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it is painless. it is free. it is secure. you download the dashboard. what will happen is if i go take a test and the health department -- we will get a code that shows me i have had it. i will put it in and it will notify everyone who was around me within a six feet radius from within six minutes or more. there is no data collected. there is no data collected to the minnesota department of health or google or apple. it is a random key that is generated. it guarantees privacy but gives you another tool to know. so you were on the patio and you were eating and you do not think there was any reason to be concerned. you could get a notification. this is an opt in alternative. you do not have to put the code in your phone and you do not have to notify others around you. i would strongly encourage if not beg you, please do so.
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people deserve to know if they have been exposed to covid-19 and they have a responsibility to make the proper move. get yourself tested. if you are positive, quarantine and we can notify others. this is not contact tracing. this is not going to itself stop the spread. it is another valuable tool that helps us do that. is being done by nonprofits, the work that is being done by businesses, the work being done inside state government to ensure folks have the capacity to understand what is happening to them is important. theuld like to have commissioner from the minnesota department of information technology explain a little about this. we are joined by an infectious disease expert. this is an interchange where we are able to use technology to fight against what we know now is a relatively predictable virus in terms of how it is
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spreading from one another. it is just how difficult it is because of the a symptom medic spread to let people know. i would like to make note to minnesotans, you see commissioner malcolm and you see commissioner grove and others and the director has been up here, commissioner thoms runs all of the i.t. services. prettya pandemic, a amazing thing happened last week. we closed a chapter on our vehicle services and launched a mint drive. for those of you familiar with this, that was the biggest story for about three years running. we simultaneously over the last year moved and migrated an entire lottery system while it was live to another system. that had never been done in the country. we updated systems ranging from workmen's comp. and our high schools and our computers. all of those have been done in a creative manner. public,together with
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private, nonprofit universities and commissioner thoms's expertise to make sure that [no audio] >> thank you, governor. good afternoon, minnesotans. i am the commissioner of minnesota i.t. services and the chief information officer for the state of minnesota. slowing the spread of covid-19 is a community effort. it requires a commitment of all minnesotans to do our best to
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keep each other safe. notifying friends, neighbors or people we may not know of a potential exposure to covid-19 is essential to slowing the spread of this virus. doing that is often very difficult. newy, minnesotans have a tool, which is a data privacy centered covid notification app. this adds another important tool for communities that allows us to bring our mobile phones to the fight against covid-19. the more people that use it, the better it works. before we get into how this mobile app works, i want to make a few things perfectly clear building on comments the governor just made. the apple-google partnership to create this exposure notification capability was created with data privacy at its foundation. the app itself is completely
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100% opt in. we can decide to adopt the app. we can decide to share a winning with others. we can decide to share how big of an opportunity it is for others to use this app. yourpp does not track location or use gps. it does not transfer any information to the state or anyone else related to location. ordoes not use your identity share your identity with others including with google or with apple or with the state of minnesota. at no point in time does it ask you for identifying information. it never accesses personal information on your phone such as her contact information. it does not require you to provide additional information. let's talk about how this app works. the app is completely opt in. it is a free download available on the google or apple app
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stores. when people opt in to the app, their phones generate a random number that changes as frequently and periodically to protect the identity of people using the application. when two phones are within six feet for 15 minutes, the phones exchange these numbers via bluetooth. when someone tests positive, they have the choice and it is important to underscore they have the choice of using the app to warn others. health authorities provide a code that is entered into the app. people that have been in close contact within the infectious period will receive a notification they may have had a potential exposure. when you receive this notification, at no point does it tell you who triggered notification. it does not tell you where the exposure potentially occurred and it does not even tell you the precise time of the exposure. ranget gives a broad time
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within the last three days, within the last four to six days. available for download for free from the google and apple play story. at the core of this was a groundbreaking partnership between google and apple. as you can imagine, google and apple have not partnered on many things. at the onset of this pandemic, google and apple partnered with the knowledge that a data privacy framework that would allow people to bring their phones to this fight against covid-19 was essential. we partnered together with the department of health, amazing technologists at minnesota i.t. services and the path check foundation was developed in launching this app in other jurisdictions as well to create this opportunity. really a groundbreaking set of partnerships. that partnership has to extend beyond this. that partnership has to extend into communities that look into the potential that this
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application can provide in fighting covid-19 and adopted businesses with the ability to warn employees, schools, colleges, universities where the adoption of mobile phone technology is rapid with the ability to notify people we do not know. i was at my barber not long ago and had a conversation about the potential of using an app like this. if i can trustat to my barber to cut my hair, he probably would be an excellent person to validate this is a useful tool. it is that community collaboration that is essential for this. i went to encourage all minnesotans, our visitors and anyone that spends time in the state to download covid awaremn and to tell your communities to do the same. the premise is simple yet impactful. if communities are willing to adopt the app, use it to report
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positive test results and follow health recommendations when notified of an exposure, this app can help us return to many of the activities we have missed so much and save lives. very activer of kids, once you miss playing basketball, who miss going to school and everything else this pandemic has taken away from them. along with other measures such as wearing masks, social distancing and testing, if we decide to adopt this app, it will help us protect each other and put us on a path forward. every little bit that we can do to put an -- to put an end to this virus is important. the exposure technology provides our state with a powerful opportunity to take action and does so in a way that protects your privacy and information through the whole process. .comse visit covid awaremn to learn more.
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i would like to transition to chris erisman who will give you an update on the current situation in minnesota and will give you information on what happens when you receive an exposure notification warning. thank you. >> thank you, commissioner. i have downloaded the app on my phone, and if i can do it, you sure can do it. if you don't believe me, does talk to my kids and they will tell you that is a miracle. i would like to give you an update on what we are seeing at the global level in terms of covid-19. our global total as of this morning was 58.7 million cases, 500,000 cases from yesterday and 1.30 9 million worldwide. an increase of 7354 deaths.
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in the united states we are at 12.2 million cases and over 256 ,000 deaths. minnesota added another 6354 cases for new total of 276,500 cases. 55 casesion, we added 62 cases onand 7219 sunday, so another weekend with alarming numbers. at our current pace, we will eclipse 300,000 cases this week, right around thanksgiving. another hundred thousand cases in 15 days. we hope that some of the recent dial back measures will help delay these milestones. sadly, today's update includes another 24 deaths. when you add that to the total of 90 deaths reported over the weekend, we have a new total of
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covid-19 deaths in minnesota since the start of the pandemic. eight of these deaths occurred long-term care facilities. there were nine deaths in the metro area, six in central counties, five in the southwest, three in the northeast, and one in west central minnesota. total includes six people in their 80's,seven in five in their 70's, three in their 60's, and three in their 50's. 5,156 have been a total 1 hospitalized and 3480 had to receive intensive care. right now we have 1778 people currently in minnesota hospitals with covid-19 and also 364 are in intensive care. 53r new case totals of 63
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cases comes on a volume of 57 ,015 lab test. our seven-day testing positivity rate is at 15.2%. that's up from 13.7 last week. .2 lower than we've seen in the last two days. i want to share some public health context for today's news about the covert aware minnesota app. we are really pleased to have this tool in our toolbox as part of our response efforts because it will supplement our contact tracing efforts. typically, we have to rely on a person remembering who they may have been in contact with, and the places that they visited while they were infectious. oftentimes that is difficult, and sometimes people have been in a situation in which they can't remember, or they don't know the people that may have
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been in close proximity to them. so with this exposure app, and a soda can anonymously inform people they don't know -- ns can anonymously inform people they don't know. the more people who use the app, the more people can be notified who may have been exposed. if all the people who may have been exposed stay home and avoid contact with other people, they can't spread the disease. to slow down the spread of covid in minnesota and get ourselves back on track. additionally, as the governor said, some people don't ever feel sick, and they can still spread the disease to others. so this will assist them in being able to make notifications. and specifically what would happen if he did have this app on your phone and then test positive, the state and local
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would health officials contact you directly to confirm your positive test report. if you have downloaded and enabled the app on your phone, then we can provide you with a test result verification code, so the code is not tied to your identity. as you have heard, no one will know who you are, but it does allow you to make a notification three are apt to people who may have been exposed to you. this can only happen after we validate that the test results and provide the verification code. so there's no opportunity for someone thinking that this might be a practical joke. it has to go through a process. we have to verify the test results, and we do provide the code, so there are safety checks in the process. and if you happen to receive, you got this on your phone now
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and you receive a notification that you've been exposed, the notification includes links to our health department site and it includes some guidance from us on what you should do. so say you have -- you will say you have been in contact with someone who has tested positive for covid and you need to stay home for 14 days. that is to quarantine period. we encourage you to get tested, even if you have a negative test result, however you still need to stay in quarantine. the reason for that is -- the incubation period is 14 days, so if you happen to test negative on day five, that means you still have the rest of the potentiallyeriod to become positive and infectious. but as you've heard, the app will give you a range of time when you may have been exposed to help you with your decision-making in quarantine. if you have symptoms, we want you to get tested for covid, and
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you can also talk to your health care provider if you want more information. if you don't have symptoms and you got that notification, again, we want you to stay home for 14 days, stay out of circulation, so that you aren't a potential source of infection and transmission to other people . the app will also give you some guidance about when you should be tested. usually we say about 5-7 days after exposure just because that is a more likely time that someone would become positive and so the test will be meaningful. but the app will give you a date range when the exposure like a happen, and you can also talk to your health provider to get more advice on when to get tested. but we are really excited about what this can mean, particularly in this time that were seeing so much transmission. this app will really help us enhance our outreach efforts in terms of our public health response. thank you, and i will turn it back to the governor. gov. walz: thank you, director.
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as i said, it's been a challenging week and we are getting the most difficult time of our pandemic. we are also in the most helpful, the pandemic. we have therapeutic tools treatment and soon you'll be hearing news from johnson & johnson and others that the opportunity is there. those are all things coupled with this app that, right now, if we dig down, we do the things that make a difference, mask up, socially difference, follow the mitigation rules. download this app. if you need to get tested, quarantine, and let's break the spread of this as we move forward. i spent extensive time this morning with our team on briefing on vaccine rollout. andll leave this briefing secretary azor will be updating the nation's governors on where we are on vaccine development, just so folks know what is
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different this time about it is, they were doing simultaneous work on this as well as prep for manufacturing. at normal times, we would go through all this and once everything was done and they were approved, then they would start digging out the manufacturing process. it has been being done simultaneously. no corners will be cut. safety will be a top priority, but the opportunity is really great. here's what we can not do. we cannot let our guard down. we cannot put people at risk when we know there are things we can do to make a difference. i hope if you're listing our thinking about it, download that. it is literally less than 30 seconds to get yourself up and running. if everything is done right, you will never be notified and you will never have to notify anybody else. but if it does happen, this is your opportunity to be a good citizen and pass it on. again, i want to just tell you the conversations, and i've spent a lot of time in the u.s. congress on the issue of privacy in a technology driven world.
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that is a top priority, along with the health care benefits. that we and you outside groups and privacy identity,e -- your location, and anonymity are protected. and it can also protect your health. >> the tech has been around for this toowhile, but is little, too late, for lack of a better term? gov. walz: commissioner thoms was an early adapter on a lot of this. we've been aware of this technology early on. one of my concerns was making sure that we had run the traps on the security and the privacy piece of this. once again, i think getting a little bit of field testing on this and getting it out there amongst people really matters because if people choose to believe or they get caught in a conspiracy theory like coal on
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the internet, they don't do the adoption. so is trying to find that balance. thank you. i certainly don't think it's too little, too late. this pandemic has certain proven to be incredibly unpredictable and this is another tool maida venable -- available to minnesota communities that communes can use alongside masking and social distancing and other health measures. i think we still have a long way to go and every tool that allows us to resume activity in our communities, whether in social spaces or economic spaces really is important. it's a tool like and help protect employees, families, and when reaching out to people that may need to be warned, it's possible you simply don't know who they are. so i don't think it's too little, too late. the governor mentioned from the onset of this pandemic, we've scoured the globe related to
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opportunities that technology can play to assess how we can use innovative technology to help everyone. the the onset, certainly data privacy aspect was unbelievably important to us and we spent a lot of time watching the rollout, looking at the rollout while continuing to work in these spaces to make sure that we rolled out an app that really brought broad consideration to the data privacy concerns. [indiscernible] it was an amazing partnership. google and apple partnered on the exposure notification framework that is broadly in use across the globe now, and it has at its core data privacy. we then embarked on a partnership together with the path check foundation among physicians from the mayo clinic,
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an amazing epidemiologist from the department of health to co-create what an application like this could look like. the epidemiologist at the department of health gave feedback to google on how the exposure notification framework works. there actual app development work that was done by the path check foundation and they are launching a similar app in other jurisdictions as well. it is a nonprofit organization. in terms of privacy, in order to get a code, you said that people have to get the diagnosis, the test, that they then depart -- contact the department of health to get the code? is the state tracking everybody who has gotten covid with their names? how does this work in other states if people are willing to do this? >> i'll start with the first question. i go in and i get tested and i test positive.
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the way that our current law is that communicable diseases are reportable to the department. so we do get the names of people who test positive for covid. that's how we are reaching out and do in our case investigation. so when we reach out to call an individual, so if i got called by the health department, that would go through the interview and say chris, have you downloaded this app? and would you be willing to use it? and if i say yes, i have, and i would like to be able to notify my potential exposures. then they will give me a code. without that code, i can't notify people, and the goal, then, is that the health department has the ability to control only when we verify that the really is a positive test with there be a notification that goes out. widely will this work in other states? >> other states have used it and found it useful. the commissioner can talk about some of the studies.
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places, the efficacy of a tool like this really goes broadly alongside other measures. masking, social distancing, testing. it has been rolled out across europe. when you look at the various responses that countries that have adopted an app-based approach, which is really all of europe and a number states in the united states, the app certainly plays a large role in the benefit and suppression of covid-19 spread. according to research from oxford university, for example, as little as 15% adoption in a community setting, and i think it is important to remember that adoption is within community settings, essentially those places that -- adoption sometimes is viewed as a state level. if a college or university has at least 15% adoption, they may see a slowing of covid-19 by as much as 15%, just by the ability
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to notify others. but keep in mind, it's book -- the choices we make. our willingness to warn our neighbors and friends and people we don't know, and then our willingness to follow the recommendations and take the necessary safety precautions so that we don't spread it to someone else. this to serveget the areas where they are most affected? why not go to the university of minnesota and push this and say can you push this on every kid or ask every kid to download it? savvy anyway apt and might be more willing to do it. that is exactly what we are doing. you will see probably social contacts from those settings, as they are promoting it within their settings.
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we've had conversations where the number of universities that are eager to promote this within their student body, but also community settings, whether it's workplace settings or religious settings and other places. one of the things that is really important is that critical trust component, the abilities to support and promote this, really can't be that you launch an app and then you just kind of forget it. you have to continue to educate people. you have to find nathan the barber believes in this app that will share it with every person who sits in his chair. because he is within six feet of people for 15 minutes every single day. to ability to reach out those community spaces, universities and college, is absolutely what we are doing. we see people who are resistant to some of the other saying so are you
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[indiscernible] at any level up or suspect -- participation doesn't make a difference? >> absolutely. as we share broadly the more people that adopt, the greater the benefit is. i think that benefit already starts at like 10% or 15% adoption. certainly it is in all of our collective best interest if we trust this and look into the data privacy and feel that it doesn't ask my identity, it doesn't track my location. it's really easy to install, and we share that with our friends and neighbors as a mechanism. we can collectively get to that 10-15% where we already have benefit, and each adoption along the way, everyone who brings the phone to this fight against covid-19 in addition to that, really can provide a powerful opportunity to continue to suppress the spread. [indiscernible]
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no predictions. i can share that in a most recent launch, colorado had a middling people download the app within the first two weeks. i certainly think that in minnesota, we are very different and have high hopes and aspirations that we will do our due diligence, then we will visit the site that will look into the framework that will look into the data privacy. some no predictions, just using that as a backdrop. what we know is, when it is not a broad community showing effort , that the potential of something like this certainly won't meet what it potentially can. jointt collective community aspect and engagement of this is going to be really important. >> [indiscernible] >> that's why the community aspect of this, even as it relates to potential, is really
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very important. communities and their settings can decide that this is a tool to add along with social distancing, testing, quarantining, masking, that they can use in those settings to protect themselves. >> it's not replacing contact tracing, but commissioner malcolm said that [indiscernible] augment the need for contact tracers? >> that's a good question. as we are seeing this unprecedented numbers of cases, our workload has increased exponentially along with the case growth. so we are looking at ways that we can be effective in our outreach as well as think about how to best utilize our resources. so we are grateful for this as a tool and we will continue to look at how do we manage all the things that need to happen in light of the escalating case
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growth? so it hasn't replaced contact tracing. it's an important tool, but we are certainly evaluating how we manage our resources with the high number of cases that we are seeing. how confident are you and how accurate the technology is? confident they really have been within six feet of someone who tested positive? maybe they were 10 or 15 feet away. if you're taking two weeks out of your life to sit at home when you may have been 20 feet away. >> this is a bluetooth technology so it does have the ability to make that differentiation. the one thing we've talked about that it can't do is it doesn't differentiate if there's like a plexiglas barrier as there is right here.
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so that's one thing that it won't do, but it does have the ability to differentiate distance because of that bluetooth. >> governor, you were talking about [indiscernible] gov. walz: there is no deal done yet, but the way these things work is that we have put together package and work with folks in the house specifically, which a spending bill will originate there, and put together basic principles, started to see where the appetite was. i've said that it appears to be bipartisan. the desire to get help to small businesses was strong. what we did was just take the lead on this, there will be compromises working together. i feel very optimistic that this would be one where i think we can find a good compromise and work together around the
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pandemic in a very productive way. i think this is just a first step in it. again, you saw some of what we will put out. there will be some that agree or disagree with the pieces that are in their. we will find out what we can do. i just have a sense of urgency around the lack of federal response on this, that minnesota can do something. and we've targeted things that were both very short-term, immediate triage and that were a little longer term. you don't have to pay licensing fees, sales tax, all of a sudden there is money freed up to these businesses in the short run. those are things we are looking at. i would note to everyone that the budget forecast is scheduled for next week. that's a time that is in there. i would hope and think that there will be some projections around where we are looking in the budget that will help inform
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our decision. so the timing is right here in minnesota. we will know where we are at on revenues and the budget. it should give us a good place, that we should be able to work some of this out, take a look at the numbers and put this package together and get that help to folks right now. think it was important for us, we were looking at what we could do both from an administration standpoint, and talking to folks in the house where it would have to originate. i'm getting every indication that there's a desire to get something done. spaceying to leave that for the legislature to partner in this. i keep hearing that they want to be part of this decision-making, so i'm going to put this out there. i'm going to put our package out there, and their job is to start to come into that discussion. will this occur before
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december 12? gov. walz: i think so. i'm feeling the sins from these businesses and from employees, the sense of immediacy right now . not looking at things that could make a today type difference. if there's capacity, i think that's why the timing of us coming up against some of our budget numbers, our forecasts number revenue numbers -- the sense from these businesses and employees. once again, the legislative branch will be the one that will start to move some of that. i think there's a capacity here for us to truly partner together in really smart and targeted ways. andrages with revenue taxation and things the house can do coupled with the senate. i guess in state government, i'm
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going to encourage state government employees to download this app. i noticed we had folks from the governor's office in this room and department of revenue. i'm going to guess and hope that they were downloading as we were speaking in this room. your privacy is protected. it is an opt in. this is a good way to just be neighborly and say, you might have gotten exposed. i do not believe the vast majority of minnesotans are not just willfully pretending this is not real. they simply don't know they have been exposed. they're simply trying to go about their daily lives as they can. with hospital bed space at a premium, when our health care providers are telling us they will literally get down on their knees and beg you to slow the spread of this, you have a real tool, from wearing a mask to social distancing, and now putting this on your phone, and then the advent of nearly 60,000 tests. we have the capacity to control
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this right now with our behavior. this app should help you do that. and set itmn, go in up. it's literally 30 seconds and you were done. as i said, my hope is you never have to use it, you never get a notification, but if you do, you do the minnesotan thing and pass it on. we will hopefully be back tomorrow with a flesh out package of relief for our small businesses and their employees who are simply doing what is right to protect their neighbors. and i would ask us both as a legislature and minnesotans, let's put together a minnesota package. let's inspire the federal government to do what they need to be doing, put together a nationwide package, keep ourselves here into the first part of next year when these vaccines come online, and let's it through this thing and get back to the things we love and the things that make a difference in our lives. thank you all.
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>> with coronavirus cases increasing across the country, use our website, coronavirus, to follow the trends, track the spread with interactive maps, and watch updates on demand, anytime, at tuesday the nevada state supreme court certified the state relay results. watch online at, or listen live on the free c-span radio app. >> nebraska


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