Coronavirus: 4 major banks agree to 90-day grace period for mortgage payments in CA, Newsom says

SACRAMENTO, Calif. (KABC) -- Gov. Gavin Newsom on Wednesday announced that four major banks have agreed to grant a 90-day grace period for mortgage payments in California amid the coronavirus outbreak.

Newsom said that four out of five of the nation's largest banks - JP Morgan Chase, U.S. Bank, Wells Fargo and Citibank - have all committed to the moratorium. Meanwhile, Bank of America agreed to commit to a 30-day forbearance period.

"I hope they will reconsider and join those other banks that are willing to do the right thing by at least extending that commitment to their customers for at least 90 days," he said during a press conference Wednesday.

RELATED: Coronavirus Southern California update: 3 additional deaths, 138 new cases confirmed in Los Angeles County

Newsom noted that California does not have regulatory oversight over those banks, though many state banks and credit unions have also agreed to the grace period.

The news comes after Congress reached a deal with the Trump administration on Wednesday on a $2 trillion stimulus package that will increase unemployment benefits by $600 per week on top of what the state provides. Newsom said the state will receive $10 billion in relief as part of the emergency bill.

A total of 1 million people have filed for unemployment in the state since March 13, he said.

Newsom also announced 2,535 new cases - a 17% increase since the previous day - and a total of 53 deaths in the state.

As the 1,000-bed U.S. Navy Ship Mercy prepares to dock in Los Angeles to aid local hospitals, Newsom said additional resources are coming in the form of 100 million N95 masks, which have been secured for healthcare workers in the state.

RELATED: Coronavirus: US Navy ship en route to Los Angeles to ease burden on area hospitals

The vessel, which is carrying 800 medical personnel and support staff, will not be used to treat COVID-19 patients. Instead, it will handle other cases, easing the burden on Los Angeles hospitals treating patients infected with the virus. Assistance from the ship will free up resources, such as ventilators and intensive care units.

According to the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, the Mercy should arrive at the Port of Los Angeles sometime Thursday morning.

Across the Southland, there have been over 1,000 confirmed coronavirus cases and 21 deaths, with nearly 250 presumptive cases in San Diego County.

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