WASHINGTON — Governor Asa Hutchinson meeting with President Trump and Vice President Mike Pence in Washington today to discuss how the state is dealing with the coronavirus.
Arkansas’ Republican Governor Asa Hutchinson told President Trump his state is having an easier time restarting its economy because he was one of the few governors that didn’t issue a statewide stay-at-home order.
“There were repercussions from it, but in terms of the economy, it’s all positive,” said Hutchinson.
Nearly 5,000 Arkansans have tested positive for the virus and about a hundred have died.
“If you look at any measuring stick, Arkansas is in a very good position,” said Governor Hutchinson.
Hutchinson says he’ll stay the course allowing most businesses to resume limited operations. Some never had to stop including one of the world’s largest meat processors Tyson Foods along with other food processors.
“Sure, we might have a positive case that pops up. We’re going to take care of that person, isolate and then get back to business,” said Governor Hutchinson.
Hutchinson thanked President Trump for the additional $600 in federal weekly benefits for Arkansas’ 100,000 newly unemployed.
President Trump has said he supports suspending the unemployment benefits, but Hutchinson tells us Arkansans need that money.
“In terms of encouraging confidence in spending and building our businesses back,” said Governor Hutchinson.
Hutchinson is also asking the President to support an extension for small businesses to pay back federal loans under the Paycheck Protection Program.
The governor says Arkansas businesses need more time to get fully up and running.