WASHINGTON – The $ 900 billion bill that President Trump finally signed on Sunday night goes well beyond the delivery of the $ 600 checks that became a major sticking point in getting the legislation across the finish line.
The aid package provides a broad network of a variety of interventions targeting the needs of millions of Americans, including those who have lost their jobs, as well as small businesses, nursing homes, colleges, universities, and K-12 schools.
The package expands some provisions of the original stimulus package, which was passed in the spring, and adds new measures to help working families who continue to suffer from the pandemic.
The full text of the bill was almost 5,600 pages. Here’s a look at what’s included.
One of the most anticipated pieces of legislation is direct payment. $ 600 goes to single adults with adjusted gross income of up to $ 75,000 per year, based on 2019 income. Heads of household earning up to $ 112,500 and a married couple (or someone whose spouse in 2020 passed away), who earns up to $ 150,000 per year, would receive double that amount.
Eligible families with dependent children receive an additional $ 600 per child.
In a change from the previous round, payments to citizens who are married to someone without a social security number are not denied, so some spouses of undocumented immigrants can claim the benefit this time.
On Tuesday evening, President Trump threatened to veto the bill because he said the payments were too low. He advocates payments of $ 2,000. The House Democrats planned to propose a change in the law on Thursday, said an adviser familiar with the proposal. It is not clear how the House and Senate will act.
With millions of Americans still out of work, Congress expanded several programs to help the unemployed, albeit at a less generous level than in the spring.
The deal would revive the federal government’s improved unemployment benefits for 11 weeks and provide a lifeline for severely affected workers through March 14. The new benefit of up to $ 300 per week is half the amount provided by the original business cycle calculation in the spring.
The legislation also expands Pandemic Unemployment Assistance – a program aimed at a wide range of freelancers and independent contractors – over the same period, offering an additional $ 100 per week.
The school budget was severely paralyzed by the pandemic and some of the most vulnerable students found themselves in dire academic and financial straits. The bill provides $ 82 billion for education, including about $ 54 billion for K-12 schools and $ 23 billion for colleges and universities.
Apr. 28, 2020, 7:37 am ET
While the package provides far more money for K-12 schools than the first stimulus plan back in March, the funding falls short of the expectations of both sectors, which are needed to mitigate the effects of the pandemic. Many school districts that switched to distance learning this year have been forced to make expensive adjustments to accommodate the students, while often shedding staff to balance their budgets. Colleges and universities are also facing financial bottlenecks due to increasing spending and decreasing income.
“The money provided in this bill will bring limited relief, which is welcome news for weak students and institutions. But it won’t be nearly enough in the long or medium term, “Ted Mitchell, president of the American Council on Education, said in a statement.
Financing the broadband infrastructure
Legislation provides $ 7 billion to expand access to high-speed Internet connections. Almost half of that will help meet monthly internet bills by giving low-income families up to $ 50 a month.
The deal also provides $ 300 million in infrastructure development in underserved rural areas and $ 1 billion in grants for tribal broadband programs.
Targeted help for small businesses
The agreement provides $ 285 billion in additional loans to small businesses under the paycheck protection program and renews the program created under the original stimulus bill.
The second stimulus
Answers to your questions about the stimulus calculation
Updated December 28, 2020
The Economic Aid Package will issue payments of $ 600 and provide federal unemployment benefits of $ 300 for a minimum of 10 weeks. Find out more about the measure and what’s in it for you. For more information on how to get help, please visit our hub.
- Do I get another incentive payment? Individual adults with adjusted gross income on their 2019 tax returns of up to $ 75,000 per year would receive a payment of $ 600, and heads of household up to $ 112,500 and a couple (or someone whose spouse died in 2020) would receive up to to earn $ 150,000 per year Get double the amount. If they have dependent children, they will also receive $ 600 for each child. People with incomes just above this level would receive a partial payment that decreases by $ 5 for every $ 100 of income.
- When could my payment arrive? Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin told CNBC that he expected the first payments to be made before the end of the year. However, it will take a while for everyone to receive their money.
- Does the agreement concern unemployment insurance? Legislators agreed to extend the length of time people can receive unemployment benefits and restart an additional federal benefit that is on top of the usual state benefits. But instead of $ 600 a week it would be $ 300. That would take until March 14th.
- I am behind on my rent or expect to be soon. Do I get relief? The deal would provide $ 25 billion to be distributed through state and local governments to help backward tenants. In order to receive support, households would have to meet various conditions: the household income (for 2020) must not exceed 80 percent of the regional median income; At least one household member must be at risk of homelessness or residential instability. and individuals must be eligible for unemployment benefits or face direct or indirect financial difficulties due to the pandemic. The agreement states that priority will be given to support for lower-income families who have been unemployed for three months or more.
The latest version includes stricter terms designed to correct some of the unpopular elements of the original program. It limits loans to $ 2 million and only makes them available to borrowers with fewer than 300 employees who have seen revenue of at least 25 percent year-over-year in at least one quarter. The agreement also provides $ 12 billion specifically for minority-owned companies. And listed companies cannot apply this time.
Funding vaccines and nursing homes
Legislation allocates nearly $ 70 billion to a range of public health interventions, including $ 20 billion to purchase vaccines, $ 8 billion to distribute vaccines, and another $ 20 billion to help states continue their test-and-trace programs.
The bill also provides for a federal mortgage insurance scheme for nursing homes to provide emergency loans to help hard-hit elderly care centers.
Help for child care
The bill provides $ 10 billion for the childcare industry. These funds are intended to help vendors struggling with reduced enrollments or closings to stay open and keep paying their employees. The funds are also intended to help families struggling with tuition fees.
Support for climate protection measures
In an unusual rebuke to the Trump administration’s climate policy, the deal includes new laws to regulate fluorocarbons, the strong greenhouse gases found in air conditioners and refrigerators.
It also provides $ 35 billion to fund wind, solar and other clean energy projects.
A ban on surprise bills
The package will also help millions of Americans avoid unexpected – and often exorbitant – medical bills that can result from visits to hospitals.
The bill makes it illegal for hospitals to charge patients for services such as emergency treatment by doctors outside the network or transportation in ambulances, which patients often have nothing to say about.
The compromise would protect tenants struggling with rent by extending an eviction moratorium to January 31 for another month. The Ministry of Housing and Urban Development enacted a similar moratorium on Monday protecting homeowners from foreclosures on mortgages backed by the federal home administration. It runs until February 28th.
The bill also provides for $ 25 billion in rental support.
The agreement expands one of the most reliable channels of support and increases the monthly benefits of grocery brands – called the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) – by 15 percent for six months starting January 1.
Overall legislation provides $ 13 billion in increased food aid, of which $ 400 million supports food banks and pantries. Another US $ 175 million is earmarked for nutrition programs under the Older Americans Act, such as meals on wheels.