(CNN) – President Donald Trump signed a $ 900 billion pandemic relief bill on Sunday night, which includes improved unemployment benefits and direct cash payments.
The move is the second largest federal stimulus package after the $ 2 trillion CARES bill passed by Congress in March.
Legislators passed the bill last Monday, just in time to get something done before the end of December, when several aid programs in the CARES bill were due to expire, including key measures to support pandemic unemployment and evacuation protection.
The package sends direct stimulus payments to individuals for $ 600, half the amount provided in the first round of checks in the spring.
Eligible families will receive an additional $ 600 per child – $ 100 more than Congress granted families in the first round of relief last spring.
Payments run for individuals with an adjusted gross income greater than 75. 000 USD from, and those over 99. Earn $ 000, get nothing. The income thresholds have been doubled for couples.
The amounts are based on 2019 earnings. Those who filed their 2019 tax returns will receive their money automatically, as will social security recipients and those who uploaded their bank account details through the IRS’s online portal to receive their first payments.
Undocumented immigrants who do not have a social security number are still not eligible for payments. In a change from the first round, their spouses and children are now eligible as long as they have social security numbers.
The unemployed receive until the 14th. March a weekly increase in performance of $ 300. The amount is half of the previous federal boost that expired at the end of July.
With Trump waiting until Sunday for the legislation to be signed, many unemployed Americans may receive just 10 weeks more payments instead of 11 weeks.
In addition, the package extends two further pandemic unemployment programs, which were launched in March under the CARES Act and are due to expire at the end of the year, by eleven weeks.
The Pandemic Unemployment Assistance program expanded unemployment benefits initially for up to 39 weeks to gig workers, freelancers, independent contractors, the self-employed and certain individuals affected by the coronavirus. The Pandemic Emergency Unemployment Compensation program provided an additional 13 weeks of payments for those taking their regular government benefits.
Both programs will now be launched on 14. March closed for new applicants, for existing applicants who have not yet reached the maximum number of weeks, until 5. April continued.
The scheme also provides a federally funded additional benefit of $ 100 per week for those with an annual self-employment income of at least 5. Have $ 000 but are excluded from receiving Pandemic Unemployment Benefit because they are eligible for regular state unemployment benefits.
In addition, the package gives states the power to forego overpayments if the applicant is not at fault.
The final agreement is less generous than the original two-party agreement released earlier this month. It would have brought improved payments and pandemic benefits for 16 weeks.
The package also continues the full federal financing of the extended benefits until mid-March and provides for up to 20 additional weeks of payment, depending on the unemployment rate of a country. Typically, the state and federal government share the tab. Less than two dozen states now offer expanded benefits due to their improving economies.
The package reopens the paycheck protection program so some of the hardest hit small businesses can apply for a second loan. The program stopped accepting applications for the first round of loans in August.
The second loans are limited to those with fewer than 300 employees who experienced a 25% decrease in revenue in the first, second, or third quarters of 2020. It also reduces the amount a borrower can get by 10 million. USD to 2 million. USD, gives companies more flexibility in how the money is used and simplifies the process of granting loans under 150. 000 USD.
$ 12 billion is being spent on minority companies. It also extends eligibility to more nonprofits as well as local newspapers, television and radio stations.
The package provides a $ 15 billion grant program for live venues, theaters and museum operators that have lost at least 25% of their revenues.
The initial grant can be up to $ 10 million per eligible company. A second grant equal to half the first grant may also be available.
The money is used for certain expenses such as labor costs, rent, utilities and personal protective equipment.
During the first 14 days after the program is implemented, grants are given to those who have suffered a 90% loss of income. Then those who have suffered at least a 70% loss of revenue will be eligible for the next two weeks. After the first month of the program, all other eligible companies are eligible for grants.
It provides $ 82 billion for K-12 schools and colleges. Previous proposals by Republicans and Democrats called for at least $ 100 billion in aid to schools.
An additional $ 10 billion is included to support childcare workers who have struggled with the pandemic.
The evacuation protection runs until 31. January and ends at the end of the year. It also provides $ 25 billion in rental assistance to those who lost their sources of income during the pandemic.
The package increases the SNAP benefits by 15% for six months, but does not extend the eligibility. This is more generous than the original bipartisan agreement from early December, which included a four-month increase.
Democrats have voted in favor of expanding the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) as food brands have been officially known since the beginning of the pandemic, but the provision never made it into previous aid packages.
The Pandemic EBT program will also be extended to families with children under 6 who receive food stamps that are classified as “enrolled” in childcare and are entitled to benefits. The program now offers low-income families and school-age children money in lieu of the free, discounted meals they would have received at school.
The package sends $ 400 million to food banks and pantries through the Emergency Food Assistance Program.
It also allocates $ 175 million to nutritional services for seniors like Meals on Wheels and $ 13 million to the Commodity Supplemental Food Program, which serves more than 700 a month. 000 elderly Americans cared for.
It is allocating $ 20 billion to purchase vaccines so they can be freely available to those who need them, and another $ 8 billion to distribute vaccines.
It will also add $ 3 billion to the $ 175 billion fund for hospitals and health care providers to reimburse healthcare expenses or lost revenue due to the pandemic. The original deal would have given them an additional $ 35 billion.
Employers who postpone their employees ‘wage taxes as part of Trump’s executive measures from August will now have to raise their employees’ withholding tax by the end of 2021 in order to repay the taxes owed. Originally, the deferred amount had to be paid by the 30th. April to be repaid.
The package does not provide direct assistance to state and local governments. An initial call for $ 160 billion as a basis for good faith negotiations has been dropped.
The provision was one of the most controversial negotiations. House Democrats had allocated $ 875 billion to the relief bill passed in May to help states and local governments struggling with lower tax revenues due to the pandemic.
However, Republicans opposed the allocation of additional aid beyond the $ 150 billion allocated in March’s $ 2 trillion auxiliary bill that could only be used for coronavirus-related expenses. The GOP lawmakers said they don’t want to save states that have badly managed their finances.
In a joint statement last week, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Senate Minority Chairman Chuck Schumer pointed out that the final agreement would add emergency resources for schools, $ 27 billion for state highways, struggling transit agencies , Amtrak, and airports, and $ 22 billion in health-related spending by state, local, tribal, and territorial governments.
Billalso extends the deadline for issuing coronavirus aid funds of $ 150 billion by one year. State and local governments have tried to raise all of the money by Jan.. December to use, and many support residents.
State and local officials had also asked to use some of the funds to tackle budget constraints.
Donald Trump, Stimulus, Check, Coronavirus
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