Legislative Update with Christine Watkins

Castle Country Radio was given an opportunity to visit with Representative Christine F. Watkins over the telephone to talk about the Utah Leads Together plan that was released by Governor Gary Herbert on Tuesday. This is a task force plan to mitigate the economic consequences of COVID-19 and return Utah to the record-setting growth it enjoyed prior to the pandemic.

“Well it has three phases, urgent, stabilization and recovery. Each one has a time frame hooked to it and if we do what we need to we’ll be there,” said Representative Watkins. “There’s the urgent phase which we are in right now and that started on March 16.” This phase involves a coordinated public health response, large-scale testing, and historic economic stimulus. The estimated duration is tentatively estimated to be eight to 12 weeks.

“We got into the next phase which is the Stabilization Phase and its expected to last 10 to 14 weeks, and they are really hoping for 10 and it’s the longest phase and its to make sure that they are no backtracking on the progress that we’ve made during the urgent phase,” explained Representative Watkins. Public health measures and economic interventions begin to take effect. The estimated time frame is 14 weeks and the primary measure is job stabilization.

Returning to stability and positive job growth is the Recovery Phase. “Somewhere around in that 10 week time hopefully we’ve gone into the Recovery Phase and this is expected to last for eight to ten weeks and they are hoping it will be eight because if everyone will do what we are all doing right now these times can definitely be the shorter and not the longer,” stated Representative Watkins. This phase relies on successes in the prior phases and is estimated at eight to ten weeks in duration.

The Utah Leads Together plan is based on the premise that every Utahn plays a role in Utah’s health and economic recovery.