How soon will struggling Americans see benefits from the COVID-19 relief package? Here's what we know.
News 12's Doug Geed was joined this morning by CPA and economic development consultant Marty Cantor to discuss the landmark $1.9 trillion COVID-19 relief bill and unemployment.
The House gave final congressional approval Wednesday to the sweeping package by a near party line 220-211 vote precisely seven weeks after President Joe Biden entered the White House and four days after the Senate passed the bill. Republicans in both chambers opposed the legislation unanimously, characterizing it as bloated, crammed with liberal policies and heedless of signs the crises are easing.
Most noticeable to many Americans are provisions providing up to $1,400 direct payments this year to most people and extending $300 weekly emergency unemployment benefits into early September.
In the above video, Cantor talks about what part of the stimulus plan he thinks will have the most impact on Americans.
Besides the direct payments and jobless-benefit extension, the measure has hundreds of billions for COVID-19 vaccines and treatments, schools, state and local governments and ailing industries from airlines to concert halls. There is aid for farmers of color, pension systems and student borrowers, and subsidies for consumers buying health insurance and states expanding Medicaid coverage for lower earners.
The legislation would reduce the number of people living in poverty this year by around one-third, from 44 million down to 28 million, the liberal-leaning Urban Institute estimated Wednesday. The poverty rate for children would be reduced by over half, said the institute, which examined the impact of the measure's stimulus checks, jobless benefits, food stamps and tax credits for children.
AP wire services contributed to this report.