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Money for meals for California seniors could end in 2 weeks

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Posted at 6:33 PM, Apr 28, 2020
and last updated 2020-04-28 21:33:00-04

LOS ANGELES (AP) — Documents show that California's first-in-the-nation plan to deliver three meals a day to vulnerable seniors during the coronavirus crisis has less than two weeks to launch before its federal funding expires.

It wasn’t clear how many cities and counties would be delivering meals in substantial numbers by May 10. That's when money from the Federal Emergency Management Agency is set to end.

The state expects to seek an extension if the program is successful but warns “there is no guarantee it will be granted.”

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Gov. Gavin Newsom last week announced the plan for restaurants to make meals mostly paid for by the federal government.

"This partnership will allow for the ability for restaurants to start rehiring people or keep people currently employed and start preparing meals, three meals a day, seven days a week, and have those meals delivered to our seniors all throughout the state of California," Newsom said when introducing the plan. "We will provide an unlimited number of meals, no cap in terms of that support."

Newsom said there will be eligibility requirements for seniors, based in part on their income but also based on their risk of exposure to COVID-19, if they have a compromised immune system or if they have been directly impacted or exposed to the coronavirus.

Newsom added that exact eligibility requirements will be decided at the local level.