Pueblo County now has a total of 43 confirmed positive cases among its residents, according to an update

Gov. Jared Polis announced Saturday he's asked the federal government to set aside $500 billion for Colorado should Congress approve a "Phase 4" stimulus bill.


The measure, announced by President Trump in a tweet last week, would be a massive infrastructure package estimated at $2 trillion upgrading the nation's broadband, road and water systems.


"Absent this assistance, the state of Colorado and local governments who are directly helping Colorado’s communities respond and recover from the impacts of this public health crisis will face an unmitigated economic crisis," reads a letter from Polis to the Colorado Congressional Delegation.


Pueblo County now has a total of 43 confirmed positive cases among its residents, according to an update Saturday from the Pueblo Department of Public Health and Environment announcing four new patients.


Health officials in Fremont County reported its third case Saturday.


There were 4,565 cases in Colorado as of Saturday. Statewide, 875 people have been hospitalized and 126 deaths reported, including two people in Pueblo County.


Polis on Friday encouraged the public to wear a cloth mask when they leave the house — another tool in the fight against coronavirus.


"We're asking all Coloradans to wear face coverings when they go out of the house for any of your essential functions like grocery shopping," he said.


Polis modeled his own cloth face mask, made out of fabric featuring the state flag.


He said masks can be made from old T-shirts, and no sewing skills are needed. The mask should cover your nose and mouth and allow you to breathe through it.


He emphasized people should choose "the right mask for the right job." Those running essential errands should stick to cloth face masks, in order to reserve N95 masks for medical workers.


More information on efforts to make masks, including patterns, can be found at coloradomaskproject.com.


Polis also announced two new initiatives to help "weather the storm" of the economic impact of coronavirus: a one-time, 30-day extension for businesses to file and remit their sales tax; and an extended deadline for property tax payments: May 1.


"We can't expect business as usual, and the state is more than willing to pay our part in doing that," he said.


Brooklyn Dance of the USA TODAY Network contributed to this report.


rlopez@chieftain.com


Twitter: @lopezricardojr