Nebraska Governor Pete Ricketts Monday expressed support for the steps taken by the Department of Corrections in containing a virus outbreak at the Nebraska State Penitentiary in Lincoln.
The entire facility was placed under quarantine Sunday after 29 inmates from four different housing units had tested positive, with visitations suspended across the entire Nebraska prison system.
Ricketts told reporters the state has been prepared for such a contingency. “we’ve got the resources to be able to test all our inmates and we had already done that previously, in fact we had done that several months ago,” said Ricketts, “and we’ve got a plan with regard to our Department of Corrections on how to manage this, so we’re just going to work our plan, and that’s what Director (Scott) Frakes has put in place. So, I’m very confident he will continue to manage this.”
Meanwhile, Ricketts said there has been no decision on accepting President Trump’s extended Pandemic Unemployment Insurance of $400 per week, $100 of which would come from the state.
The deadline to accept the funding under a presidential executive order is Sept. 10th. South Dakota’s governor has already declined the offer.