COVID-19 Update | November 29, 2020
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Dear Friend,

As many Americans finish their Thanksgiving weekend and start preparing for December holiday travel to see their friends and family, public health officials have given guidelines to ensure the safety of travelers amidst the pandemic. 

If possible, many health officials recommend quarantining several days before traveling. In addition, it is recommended to get a COVID-19 test before you leave in order to protect the safety and health of those traveling with you.  

Be sure to check state travel guidelines as well as wearing a mask on all forms of public transportation. 

By staying safe and adhering to social distancing and traveling guidelines, we can help keep our fellow Arkansans safe as we move forward into the holiday season.


In a 5-4 ruling, the Supreme Court sided with the Roman Catholic Diocese of Brooklyn, and Agudath Israel of America, in a dispute over COVID-19 restrictions put in place by New York Governor Andrew Cuomo, limiting the number of people attending religious services.

The majority ruled in favor of the religious organizations who argued that the restrictions violated the Free Exercise Clause of the First Amendment because the regulations treated the houses of worship more harshly than comparable secular facilities.

I recently spoke on the House floor urging governors and elected officials to protect Americans’ freedom of religion and to halt the double-standard that
is currently infringing on Americans’ right to worship within religious institutions.

While many secular institutions remain open, governors in states such as Kentucky, California, Louisiana, and Virginia have enforced more restrictions on religious institutions than they have on any other public institution. 


Last week, the White House announced that, in order to prevent a surge of virus cases, they suggest measures such as encouraging masks and staying vigilant by social distancing and avoiding large casual social gatherings.

Dr. Fauci also stated that while cases have recently risen, the country will not reinstate a national lockdown.

In Arkansas, Governor Asa Hutchinson has taken measures to ensure that every Arkansan may continue to practice their freedom of religion, while adhering to a mask mandate and other necessary precautions, in order to protect others. 

Many churches currently rope off every other pew and require that worshippers wear a mask for the entirety of the service. In cases such as these, Arkansans may still protect one another, yet maintain their freedom of religion.

When there are other preventative measures in place to retain the spread of the virus, it is wrong for governors to deny worshippers their First Amendment rights. The liberties enshrined in the Constitution still apply to every American, even in the middle of a national emergency. 

Elected officials should allow Americans to worship in a safe and responsible manner and not infringe on our religious freedom.

advocating for commonsense covid-19 relief

Central Arkansans have displayed their resiliency while weathering the storm of COVID-19 but are in critical need of additional support.

Congress needs to put together, and pass, a commonsense COVID-19 relief package before the end of the year.

In my interview with Fox Business on Friday, I talked about how House Republicans are prioritizing the consensus items that unite us, such as extending the Paycheck Protection Program, giving our governors the freedom to spend their states’ CARES Act money before the December 31 deadline, and helping our families, who are living on unemployment, feel secure about the level of unemployment compensation for which they are eligible. 

I call upon Speaker Pelosi to listen to Members from both sides of the aisle who, on behalf of the Americans they represent, want to see immediate action on relief.

AnnouncING Winners of 2020 Congressional Art Competition

As an emerging technological hub, Arkansas provides our students with the means to develop their talents and skills in technology, and other cutting edge disciplines.

Despite the challenges presented by COVID-19, central Arkansas students once again have demonstrated their tenacity in science technology, engineering, and math (STEM) education, by displaying their exceptional coding skills in the 2020 Congressional App Challenge.

This great tradition allows middle school and high school students to show off their programming skills in a friendly competition with their peers. I have always been a proud advocate for this event, which showcases the talent of Arkansas youth. In addition, I was honored to serve as co-chair of this nationwide event once again this year.

Special thanks to Errin Stanger, the Deputy Director for the Arkansas Regional Innovation Hub, and Daniel Schutte, the Managing Director for Accelerator Programs at the Venture Center, for judging the competition in central Arkansas.

I am pleased to announce the winners of the 2020 Congressional App Challenge:

First Place: Noah Taylor, a senior from Conway High School in the Conway Public School District. His app, “Reaffirming Reminders,” would allow users to set up notifications to include an inspirational quote about love, hope, or wisdom.

Second Place:
Andrew Baker and Evan Ayers, juniors from Little Rock Central High School in Little Rock School District. Their app, “First Vote,” would provide useful voting information, tools, and resources to Arkansans.

Third Place:
Cassidy Bates, a senior Conway High School. Her submission, “ArtSpot,” would provide artistic inspiration, tutorials, and techniques to motivate its users, as well as allowing users to upload their art.

Honorable Mention:
Anthony Kappa and Ty McCormick from Beebe Junior High. Their app, “Where to Recycle,” would show its users where to take their recyclables around the state.

Honorable Mention:
Alissa Lloyd, Mecate Marsh, and Andrew Mitchell from Beebe Junior High. Their app, “Leading Diseases in Arkansas,” would educate its users on common diseases in Arkansas, along with symptoms, treatments, and photos.

All of our participants should be proud of their hard work and creativity. I look forward to seeing the great things that these students will do for our state in the future.

Receiving Your Economic Impact Payment

For the remainder of this year, the IRS will continue to issue EIPs for those who applied.
If you don't file taxes every year and you registered online or by mail, the IRS should be issuing your payment by December 31.

Any person who has missed the November 21st deadline will need to wait until next year and claim it as a credit on their 2020 federal income tax return.

Those who received their original EIP by direct deposit will also have any supplemental payment direct deposited to the same account. Others will receive a check.

If you missed the November 21st deadline, you may still be eligible to receive a payment in 2021. You will be eligible for receiving a payment if you did not register online or by mail and did not receive a payment in 2020, or, you received a payment, but it wasn’t the full amount of the EIP. The maximum credit for a payment is $1,200, or $2,400 if married filing jointly, along with $500 for each qualifying child.

If registering online, one may use the Non-Filers: Enter Payment Info Here tool.

Eligible recipients can check the status of their payments using the Get My Payment tool on

Please contact me at (501) 324-5941 or Hill.House.Gov if I can answer any questions for you about EIP.


Both Federal and Private Insurance Enrollment Period

Right now, you can enroll in or change your 2021 Marketplace health insurance. The Open Enrollment Period runs from November 1, 2020 - December 15, 2020. Plans purchased during this period will start on January 1, 2021. 

If you do not complete your enrollment by Tuesday, December 15th, you cannot get 2021 coverage unless you qualify for a Special Enrollment Period. 

• Create an account HERE 

• Update your application and compare plans for 2021 HERE

• Preview 2021 plans with estimates based on income HERE

The open enrollment period is also underway for Medicare and will continue until December 7, 2020. Medicare beneficiaries can review their 2021 Medicare and prescription drug plan options and change plans if they choose. Any changes will take effect on January 1, 2021. 

To compare plans or select a new one, please visit HERE or call 1-800-MEDICARE. 

For more information about your current plan’s costs, benefits, and rules for 2021, please visit HERE

If you are currently covered by Medicare Advantage and/or Medicare Part D, please review the Annual Notice of Change and/or Evidence of Coverage forms that you have received from your plan. 

It is important to note that open enrollment is also occurring for private and employer-based insurance and that there may be more changes than usual this year due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

I am proud to have a dedicated team in Arkansas who can assist you with matters involving the federal government. If you have any questions about Social Security benefits, the Internal Revenue Service, or federal healthcare programs, please contact my office at (501) 324-5941.

It is my honor to represent you in Congress.

Representative French Hill 
Representative French Hill

Office Locations
Washington, DC Office
1533 Longworth House Office Building
Washington, DC 20515
Phone: (202) 225-2506
Fax: (202) 225-5903
Conway Office
1105 Deer Street, Suite 12
Conway, AR 72032
Phone: (501) 358-3481
Fax: (501) 358-3494
Little Rock Office
1501 N. University Ave., Suite 630
Little Rock, AR 72207
Phone: (501) 324-5941
Fax: (501) 324-6029
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