Comprehensive aid sends out $1,400 survival checks, increases the child tax credit to $3,000, extends the $300 a week of expanded unemployment assistance, speeds up vaccine distribution, funds nutrition and rental assistance, and includes $7.1 billion in state and local funding for communities across Washington
WASHINGTON — U.S. Representative Pramila Jayapal (WA-07), Chair of the Congressional Progressive Caucus and a member of the House Budget Committee, voted today to send a comprehensive $1.9 trillion COVID-19 relief package to President Joe Biden’s desk. This bold legislation delivers robust aid to millions of families, puts money directly in people’s pockets, cuts child poverty in half, and helps crush the spread of the virus.
The American Rescue Plan provides $1,400 survival checks per individual plus $1,400 per child, a larger $3,000 tax credit per child, and $300 a week of expanded unemployment assistance. Additionally, the legislation includes immediate investments to speed up vaccine distribution, rental and nutrition assistance, grants to small businesses, and funding for schools and child care facilities. The package also vastly increases state and local funding with $239 million for Seattle, more than $276 million for communities throughout Washington’s Seventh Congressional District, and $7.1 billion to those across the Evergreen State.
“The American Rescue Plan is a bold relief package that meets the scale of this devastating crisis, puts money directly in people’s pockets, and crushes the virus,” said Congresswoman Jayapal. “At an unprecedented moment in which one in seven families don’t have enough to eat and 40 million Americans struggle to stay in their homes, this relief package provides survival checks, expanded unemployment assistance, an increased child tax credit, investments in vaccine distribution, funding for nutrition and rental assistance, help for small businesses, and robust state and local funding. There is still more work to be done to help those in need, give workers a long-overdue raise, and lift people out of poverty but our aid package is a crucial down payment on the $3 to $4.5 trillion in stimulus funding necessary to fully recover from this crisis.”
The American Rescue Plan Act of 2021 now heads to President Biden’s desk. It includes the following:
- Survival Checks: $1,400 direct payments per individual making less than $75,000 per year ($150,000 per year for joint filers) plus $1,400 per child, including mixed-status families
- Expanded Unemployment Assistance: Extends the $300 per week of expanded unemployment assistance through September 6 while exempting up to $10,200 in unemployment benefits received in 2020 from federal income taxes for households making less than $150,000.
- Increased Child Tax Credit: Makes the Child Tax Credit fully refundable and increases its amount to $3,000 per child and $3,600 per child under the age of six; this will cut child poverty in half
- COVID-19 Vaccinations: Over $20 billion to establish a National COVID-19 Vaccination Program that speeds up the distribution of vaccines while also providing $47.8 billion for testing, contact tracing, and mitigation
- Robust State and Local Funding: More than $7.1 billion to communities across Washington state including more than $276 million in Washington’s Seventh Congressional District, nearly $437 million for King County and more than $159 million for Snohomish County, and more than $239 million for Seattle
- Housing Assistance: Provides $27.5 billion for emergency rental assistance, $10 billion to help homeowners afford their mortgage, and $5 billion for utility assistance
- Nutrition Assistance: The package provides nutrition assistance for 40 million Americans while investing in food security by extending SNAP maximum benefits by 15%, providing $1.1 billion in additional SNAP administrative funds, allocates $800 million in WIC, and invests in more than $5 billion in the Pandemic-EBT program
- Funding for Schools and Childcare Facilities: Nearly $130 billion to help K-12 schools reopen safely and $39 billion for Child Care Development Block Grants that help child care providers and make sure families can cover tuition; increases the amount of child and dependent care expenses that are eligible for the Child and Dependent Care Tax Credit to $8,000 for a qualifying individual and $16,000 for two or more individuals;
- For Washington state, this aid includes $1.9 billion in K-12 funding, $655 million in higher education funding, $635 million in child care funding, and $13 million in head start funding
- Small Business Grants: Increases PPP funding and eligibility by $7.25 billion, creates a restaurant revitalization fund with more than $28.6 billion, provides $15 billion for COVID-19 emergency grants that go to small businesses, and provides $10 billion to support up to $100 billion in small business financing through state, territorial, and tribal government programs — of this amount, $2.5 billion is dedicated for support to business enterprises owned and controlled by socially and economically disadvantaged individuals, including minority-owned businesses
- Assistance for Homeless Youth: The legislation contains Representative Jayapal’s Feeding Homeless Youth During COVID-19 Act, which expands meal and snack assistance to young adults
- Transit Assistance: Invests in transit systems by providing $30 billion to prevent, prepare, and respond to the continued threat of the pandemic
- Funding for Broadband: Provides $7.1 billion to expand internet connectivity to students and communities