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Treasury To Begin Distributing Virus Relief Money To Tribes

May 6, 2020

FLAGSTAFF, Ariz. — The U.S. Treasury Department says it will begin distributing billions in coronavirus relief funding to tribes.

For more than a month, Maine has confronted the coronavirus, which is affecting all Maine people. Mainers living through this coronavirus economic slowdown are getting a glimpse of what happened in the Great Depression. Unemployment is soaring. Many are having trouble paying bills. Food pantries are seeing spikes in visits.

Courtesy Beth Weisberger /

Not all businesses have suffered during the pandemic — some in Maine are booming.

Gneiss Spice in Bethel – Gneiss as in the bedrock common in parts of Maine — sells spice jars and spice refills online, and is doing pretty well.

Beth Weisberger, the company’s owner, told Maine Public that feelings of success, at a time when others are hurting, is complicated.

This interview has been edited for clarity.

BRUNSWICK, Maine - Maine's independent senator urged the U.S. Department of Agriculture to support his state's blueberry and potato industries amid difficulty in the market.

FLAGSTAFF, Ariz. - The U.S. Treasury Department has yet to send payments to tribal governments from a coronavirus relief package approved in late March.

Organizers of 10 of the state’s annual summer agricultural fairs have decided to cancel their 2020 season.

Robert F. Bukaty / AP File

Members of the all-Democratic Massachusetts congressional delegation are pushing to include East Coast seafood in purchasing agreements funded by the federal Coronavirus Food Assistance Program.

Wild Oats Bakery and Cafe

Restaurants were some of the first businesses closed due to COVID-19, and the timing couldn't have been worse for Wild Oats Bakery & Cafe in Brunswick. The cafe was in the middle of a building project and trying to move to a new location when the town issued its stay-at-home order.

Jennifer Mitchell / Maine Public File

It was supposed to be a great year for Maine potatoes. Last year's harvest was strong, and this year should have seen about 3,000 new acres brought into production, but the sudden arrival of COVID-19 has changed all that.

Susan Sharon / Maine Public

A Bethel brewery owner who defied a state emergency order not to allow dine-in customers in his pub until June 1 has been issued a temporary suspension of his license to serve food by Maine’s Health Inspection Program.

Dogs and humans in need of a trim since last month turned out Friday to Maine's reopened grooming and stylist salons.

An organization of restaurant owners and workers wants the state to reopen their industry ahead of the Mill’s administration’s latest plan.

Rich Pedroncelli / AP Images

The first wave of Maine business reopenings starts Friday, under the phased guidance measures Gov. Janet Mills started to issue this week. Some companies, particularly where social distancing is relatively easy, are raring to go. But professionals who work in closer quarters with customers are wary.

PORTLAND, Maine - A Wisconsin shipbuilder has won a contract to build up to 10 frigates for the Navy, a contract Maine's Bath Iron Works also sought to win.

via Tammie Stone

More than 100,000 Mainers have filed for unemployment since March. That's just one of the many wide-ranging economic effects of COVID-19. The claims have overwhelmed the Department Of Labor in Maine. And while the state has been able to get benefits to more than 70,000 people so far, many are still waiting.

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