LAFAYETTE, La. — On Wednesday, May 13, Lafayette Consolidated Government officials provided updates on the on-going COVID-19 public health emergency.
Lafayette Mayor-President Josh Guillory announced that his administration would soon be presenting an initiative to provide financial assistance from an $850,000 federal Community Development Block Grant to the Lafayette City and Parish Councils for small businesses that were forced to close down during Gov. John Bel Edward's Stay At Home Order.
Guillory said that businesses would be eligible if they were forced to close down by the governor's order and were not able to receive federal assistance under either the CARES Act, Paycheck Protection Program, Small Business Administration Loans or Economic Injury Disaster Loans.
Guillory stated that the funds do not come from the CARES Act, but are funds that have been allocated through the Community Development Department.
Guillory said that the program would focus on businesses with no where else to turn including hair salons, barbers, tanning salons, musicians and massage therapists.
He added that the Lafayette Economic Development Authority will be able to help supplement these businesses who fit these criteria.
Guillory said he will present the initiative to the councils on Tuesday, May 19.
If passed, the measure would go to the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development for final approval, Guillory said.
He added that if approved, the funds will be able to be distributed to qualifying businesses as early as June 1.
LCG also announced that a notification system will be launched in the coming days to keep businesses and citizens updated on the latest developments.
Also, 15th Judicial District Judge Marilyn Castle announced that the Lafayette Parish Courthouse would begin partial reopening to the public on Monday, May 18.
She said that individuals with a court date during the state shutdown are asked to come Monday to be served with a new court date.
The court will observe the 6 foot social distancing, 25% capacity and mask requirement rules when it reopens operations on Monday.
Castle said that defendants should contact their attorney about receiving a new court date unless they have already been served with one.
Castle said that the Lafayette Police Department and the Lafayette Parish Sheriff's Office would be providing assistance with setting up tents and helping to manage crowds and lines outside the courthouse.
Castle said that more details will be available at www.15thjdc.org.
In a press conference on Monday, Guillory said that his administration was reviewing the Phase One reopening guidance and would work closely with stakeholders to ensure businesses could safely reopen.
Gov. John Bel Edwards announced on Monday that his stay-at-home order would expire on Friday, May 15 and that the state would begin entering into Phase One of reopening.
To see more on the governor's Phase One reopening plan, click here.
On Wednesday, May 13, the Louisiana Department of Health was reporting 537 coronavirus cases with 22 deaths in Lafayette Parish.
Across the state, there were 32,662 confirmed cases with 2,315 deaths.
On Monday, the LDH reported that 22,608 coronavirus patients in Louisiana are "presumed recovered."
LDH updates their numbers each day at noon.
To see the latest numbers and a breakdown by parish, click here.
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