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Gov. Newsom announces new protections for those who owe money during pandemic


SACRAMENTO, Calif. (KRON) — State officials today announced new protections for those who owe money amid the pandemic.

Governor Gavin Newsom signed an executive order Thursday keeping debt collectors from garnishing any stimulus check money in California.

“It’s also retroactive, so if you’re a debt collector and you did garnish those contributions, those checks, you gotta give them back,” Newsom said.

The only exceptions are for those who owe child care, spousal support or money to a victim’s account.

Newsom also announced 21 of the state’s largest 24 student loan services agreed to a 90-day forbearance on loans.

“Impacting over 1.1 million Californians with loan debt, no burden to them over the next 90 days, no impact to their credit ratings, no late fees or fines and actual support in getting new payment plans in place.”

California leaders trying to take some financial pressure off of millions of Californians struggling amid the COVID-19 crisis.

Newsom said $4 billion dollars so far has been distributed in unemployment to 3.9 million people.

The governor acknowledged the frustrations Californians are having with the state’s unemployment insurance call center.

“We’re continuing to process more claims and address some of the anxiety around getting access to an individual, a human being to answer the phone,” he said. “We are adding a few hundred more personnel to that task.”

The governor, still not ready to give a set date on when California can begin opening up the closed parts of its economy.

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