LYNN NEWS ROUND-UP
MARCH 29, 2021
See our COVID-19 related posts by clicking here.
ICYMI: The free election section of our website is also now live with information valuable to voters such as current candidate lists, voter registration deadlines, interactive polling location map, & more. CLICK HERE TO VISIT!
The state of MA has advanced to Step 1 of Phase IV & updated its travel advisory. Click here for more info.
COVID Vaccine Clinics available for Lynn Educators March 26th, April 2nd, and April 9th. Click here for more info.
COVID-19 testing in Lynn this week
Located at 398 Blossom St. in Lynn
The City of Lynn has been selected as one of four communities across the Commonwealth for a COVID-19 express testing site. The site will be run by Project Beacon which specializes in high-volume appointment only testing. The Lynn Project Beacon site has been extended through at least June 30th.
The site is located at the Blossom Street Extension parking lot, commonly known as the Lynn Ferry Terminal, and has the capacity to perform up to 2,000 tests per day. Residents will be able to schedule their test appointment in advance, drive up to the site at their assigned time, be tested from the comfort of their car, and receive their results within 24 hours. There will be no pedestrian, walk-up access allowed at this site. For all Massachusetts residents, there is no cost for this test, no health insurance is required, and you will not be asked about your immigration status.
Residents can create an account, make appointments, and view their test results all through one, online platform for the Project Beacon COVID-19 Express Testing site at the Blossom Street Extension by visiting app.beacontesting.com. If you have questions about getting tested or issues regarding appointments or results at Project Beacon, please go to www.mass.gov/express-testing, call Project Beacon’s Call Center at 617-741-7310, or email at firstname.lastname@example.org. Appointments will become available several days in advance at a time.
MASS GENERAL BRIGHAM (MONDAYS ONLY)
Located in Lynn Marketplace – 43 State St. in Lynn
The City of Lynn has entered a partnership between Mass General Brigham and North Shore Medical Center to offer a testing site. A mobile van will offer free walk-up testing for asymptomatic Lynn adults and children every Monday from 1-5pm in the Lynn Marketplace parking lot at 43 State Street for the duration of the winter and spring. This testing site has moved from Manning Field.
This walk-in testing is available for asymptomatic individuals who primarily live, work and go to school in Lynn. No insurance is needed, no ID is required, and no appointment is necessary. They will also not ask about immigration status.
This program is made possible in part through funding from the National Institutes of Health grant and RADx-UP (Rapid Acceleration of Diagnostics in Underserved Populations). For more information please visit http://www.kraftcommunityhealth.org/mobile-covid-testing.
LYNN COMMUNITY HEALTH CENTER
Located at 50 Blake St. in Lynn
Testing for COVID-19 is available for everyone in the Greater Lynn Community at Lynn Community Health Center through March 31st. You may be tested regardless of your symptoms or exposure to COVID-19. Call 781-581-3900 for an appointment. Appointments are strongly recommended, limited walk-in appointments are available. You do not need to be a patient at LCHC or have health insurance.
Two trailers were set up along the Blake Street side of the lot directly across from the health center to continue testing this winter. Patients enter the site through the gate across from the Mulberry Street alleyway and enter the first trailer for registration. They will exit the first trailer and proceed to the second trailer for testing. After their test they will exit the second trailer and leave the site through the gate across from the LCHC entrance. Patient movement will be one-way through the site,with plans in place to support social distancing at all times.
LCHC has created a video that helps explains how to make an appointment, what happens when you get to LCHC for your test, & how to access your testing results. Please click here to view the video.
COVID-19 testing times this week at LCHC:
- Monday: 8:30 am – 12:30 pm
- Tuesday: 1:00 pm – 5:00 pm
- Wednesday: 1:00 pm – 5:00 pm
- Thursday: 10:00am- 7:00 pm
- Friday: 8:30 am – 12:30 pm
- Testing at Lynn Urgent Care – 776 Western Ave in Lynn
- This location accepts MassHealth & tests children. Walk-ins are accepted, but it is recommended to make an appointment. This location is open from 8am-8pm every day, and you can call them at 781-281-7081 for more info. & to set up an appointment. Find out more by clicking here.
- Testing at CVS on South Common Street in Lynn
Every individual who wants a test must make an appointment by clicking here. Bring proof of identity & in-state residence, as well as test confirmation email/text message. Be sure to have your mobile phone in case we need to reach you. Stay in your car. Minors ages 10-15 will need to be accompanied by an adult. Confirm charge for asymptomatic testing online, before booking your appointment.
- Additional resources, although some info. may now be out of date:
The information above was taken from the City of Lynn, Lynn Community
Health Center, & State of Massachusetts websites
For a list of workers currently eligible please click here.
A vaccination site has opened at Lynn Tech for Lynners.
The Commonwealth and FEMA Team Up to Increase Vaccination Administration in Boston, turning Hynes Convention Center into vaccination site
The Commonwealth of Massachusetts and FEMA announced Friday a partnership to expand access to the COVID-19 vaccine by bringing 6,000 federal doses daily to the Hynes Convention Center vaccination site, for a total of 7,000 doses per day when combined with the state’s current allocation.
This Community Vaccination Center (CVC) program will be open to the public, with additional services available for the most disproportionately impacted communities in Suffolk County, starting March 31.
People interested in booking an appointment at the Hynes Convention Center vaccination site should continue to pre-register at vaccinesignup.mass.gov. There will be no disruption to the appointment process with this federal expansion. The state will also coordinate additional community outreach to assist vulnerable residents with signups. Additionally, a portion of the federal doses will be designated for mobile units for areas of Suffolk County (Chelsea, Revere & Boston). The Baker-Polito Administration will provide more details on these efforts soon.
The Hynes Community Vaccination site will have interpreters available daily for individuals speaking Spanish, Mandarin, and Haitian/Creole, as well as capability to utilize telephonic translation with access to 240 different languages. The Hynes is centrally located and accessible via public transportation on the MBTA Green Line (‘Hynes Convention Center Station,’) (‘Prudential Center Station’), the MBTA Orange Line (‘Back Bay Station’ via passageways), the Commuter Rail, and major bus routes to ensure individuals with transportation challenges can access the site. Free parking is available for those with private transportation.
Additionally, MassHealth is offering new flexibilities for Non-Emergency Medical Transportation for members with access/functional needs to ensure equitable transportation access to and from the sites.
The above is a condensed version of the full press release.
Please click here to read the press release in full.
The above press release is courtesy of Governor Baker’s office.
MA Expands P-EBT to Kids Under Six Receiving SNAP, Increases All P-EBT Benefits by 15%
On March 4th Massachusetts became the second state to receive federal approval to expand the Pandemic EBT (P-EBT) program to households with children under six years old who receive Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) benefits. All P-EBT benefit amounts will also be increasing by 15%. Recent federal actions extended P-EBT to this new population and increased the benefit amount by 15%.
P-EBT promotes increased food security for families who participate in the United States Department of Agriculture’s National School Lunch Program (NSLP), covering the cost of school meals for students in remote or hybrid learning environments during the COVID-19 public health emergency.
An estimated 96,000 eligible children in Massachusetts under age six will receive their first P-EBT benefits for the next round at the end of March. The Department of Transitional Assistance (DTA) estimates the expansion of P-EBT for these children will bring provide more than $100 million in additional federal dollars for Massachusetts families.
Households with children under six who get SNAP benefits will receive either $136.40 a month or $68.20 a month. In accordance with federal guidance, the benefit amount will be determined based on DESE K-12 education learning mode trends, and families will be notified of the benefit amount.
All future P-EBT benefits for children under age six will be issued on the 25th of each month for the duration of the program. They will also receive a special one-time payment in early April to retroactively cover the months of October through January.
Starting March 25th, eligible students in school grades K-12 will see the 15% increase in their P-EBT benefits. With the 15% increase, students in fully remote learning environments will now receive $136.40 a month and those in hybrid learning environments will receive $68.20. Based on federal rules, families may receive varying P-EBT amounts. A one-time special payment will be issued in early April to account for the increase going back to October.
Households with children under age six who receive SNAP will receive their P-EBT benefits on their SNAP EBT card. Families can check their P-EBT balance on DTAConnect.com, the DTA Connect mobile app or by calling the number on the back of their card. P-EBT benefits can be used anywhere SNAP benefits are accepted, including online from Walmart, Amazon and ALDI. Learn more about P-EBT at MAp-EBT.org.
The above is a condensed version of the full press release.
Please click here to read the press release in full, which includes info. on how to check your benefits.
Department of Transitional Assistance
Updates from state government
- As of Sunday night, DPH reported a total of 590,961 cases of COVID-19. The state reported 2,362 new confirmed cases. The state has now confirmed a total of 16,746 deaths from the virus.
- Under the federal Community Vaccination Center program officials will deploy “mobile units” in Chelsea, Revere and Boston to administer some of the federal doses. State officials will conduct community outreach to help vulnerable residents sign up for appointments, and the existing pre-registration system will remain in place with “no disruption” as the federal expansion comes online, Baker’s office said.
- Massachusetts employers added 14,100 jobs in February as the state’s unemployment rate fell to 7.1 percent, labor officials announced Friday. The joblessness rate dropped 0.7 percentage points from January, and it now stands at the lowest level since the COVID-19 pandemic hit more than a year ago. February’s rate was 0.9 percentage points higher than the national rate of 6.2 percent.
- The Massachusetts unemployment rate remains more than twice as high as the 2.7 percent joblessness rate reported in March 2020, according to Bureau of Labor Statistics data based on a household survey. Using a separate survey of employers, labor officials estimated that the private sector in Massachusetts gained 22,300 jobs in February while government employment dropped by 8,200.
- The governor on Friday afternoon signed the long-discussed legislation designed to commit Massachusetts to achieve net-zero carbon emissions by 2050, establish interim emissions goals between now and the middle of the century, adopt energy efficiency standards for appliances, authorize another 2,400 megawatts of offshore wind power and address needs in environmental justice communities. Baker and the Legislature see eye-to-eye when it comes to the goal of achieving net-zero carbon emissions by 2050, but the details of how the state would get there proved to be a much more complicated conversation.
- The new law requires that greenhouse gas emissions in 2030 be at least 50 percent lower than 1990 emissions, that 2040 emissions be at least 75 percent lower and that 2050 emissions be at least 85 percent below 1990 emissions. In order to actually net out at zero emissions by 2050, the state will have to make up the remainder, up to 15 percent, through strategies like carbon sequestration and carbon banking. The Baker administration has similarly embraced natural climate solutions in its own climate plans.
- The law also requires the executive branch to set interim limits for 2025, 2035 and 2045, and to set sublimits for six sectors of the economy – electric power; transportation; commercial and industrial heating and cooling; residential heating and cooling; industrial processes; and natural gas distribution and service – every five years. Each five-year emissions limit “shall be accompanied by publication of a comprehensive, clear and specific roadmap plan to realize said limit,” the law requires.
- That work will begin almost immediately. The first interim plan required by the new law, the plan for 2025, must be in place along with the 2025 emissions limit by July 1, 2022.
- The bill also requires the Department of Public Utilities to consider emissions reductions on an equal footing as its considerations of reliability and affordability within 90 days, that the governor appoint three green building experts to the Board of Building Regulations and Standards, and that the administration establish the first-ever greenhouse gas emissions reduction goal for the home energy efficiency program MassSave. The law, through one of Baker’s amendments, newly requires the Department of Environmental Protection to conduct cumulative impact analysis as a condition of permitting certain projects to ensure that environmental justice communities, neighborhoods that are mostly made up of people with lower incomes and people of color that are at risk of being negatively and disproportionately impacted by environmental policies, no longer bear an undue burden of air pollution.
- Offshore wind is becoming an increasingly important part of the state’s energy and environmental strategies and the new law requires that the executive branch direct Massachusetts utilities to buy an additional 2,400 MW of offshore wind power generation. So far, Massachusetts lawmakers have authorized the procurement of a total of 3,200 MW of offshore wind power. The Vineyard Wind I and Mayflower Wind projects are under contract for a combined roughly 1,600 MW and the state is in the early stages of a third procurement, one that could fulfill the remaining 1,600 MW of authorization with a single project.
- The Baker administration agreed to pay McKinsey & Co. nearly $1.6 million to study the “future of work” in Massachusetts, according to a copy of the contract with the global firm that has come under fire in recent days by legislators and Attorney General Maura Healey. The governor’s office awarded the contract Tuesday, but until Friday had not released the details of its agreement with the global consulting firm. McKinsey agreed to produce the report sought by Baker to help plan for a post-pandemic economic recovery within the next seven weeks.
- In return, Massachusetts will pay the firm $1,596,500, according to the fixed-price contract. While it’s unclear how many other firms bid on the project, McKinsey highlighted its experience working in the state and with the Baker administration as a reason its bid stood out. The company said it has worked with agencies on over 30 projects over the past five years “giving us insight into the broader political, regulatory, labor relations, infrastructure, and public relations environment in Massachusetts.”
Special thanks to MassAccess for providing these updates.
From Mayor McGee’s office: The Lynn Public Health Department has confirmed that as of today, the number of active, confirmed positive COVID-19 cases is 369 with 26 new cases today. 15,857 Lynn residents have recovered and 208 have died. The total number of confirmed positive COVID-19 cases in Lynn since March 21, 2020, including those who have died and recovered, is 16,434. Please visit the City of Lynn COVID-19 Data Dashboard which is updated daily.
COVID-19 vaccine appointments are available at Lynn Tech Fieldhouse for people who live or work in Lynn & Nahant or are Lynn Community Health Center Patients and meet state eligibility requirements (Massachusetts Phase 1 & Phase 2 Steps 1, 2, 3 & 4: 60 year of age or older or with two or more chronic health conditions, Educators and certain workers. Residents age 75+ may be accompanied by one caregiver who can book an appointment themselves.) Please visit https://www.lchcnet.org/covid-19-vaccine-scheduling to make an appointment online. Residents without access to the Internet can call 2-1-1 to make an appointment 7 days a week.
Please visit http://www.ci.lynn.ma.us/covid19/resources.shtml#p7GPc1_2 for the most up to date COVID-19 testing information, as well as more detailed information on the State and City of Lynn’s Reopening Guidelines. We will continue to provide regular updates on COVID-19 through the City website (www.lynnma.gov), social media, and the Smart 911 emergency notification system (sign up at www.smart911.com).