Cicilline Applauds Passage of $2.2 Trillion Stimulus

Friday, March 27, 2020

Third COVID-19 relief package will benefit Rhode Island with new resources

 

WASHINGTON – U.S. Congressman David N. Cicilline (RI-01) voted today to send a $2.2 trillion stimulus bill to the President. The bill provides substantial relief for Rhode Islanders impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic.

 

“This is a public health crisis unlike any we have seen before. Since Day One, Democrats have focused on saving lives and providing relief for everyone impacted in this crisis,” said Cicilline. “Mitch McConnell tried to put huge corporations first in this bill. Democrats held the line and secured real relief for real people. This bill will provide Rhode Islanders with more than a billion dollars of relief, new resources for our hospitals, direct cash payments for families, expanded unemployment benefits, and support for small businesses. It’s critical that the Trump administration get this money out the door and into the hands of Rhode Islanders as soon as possible.”

 

Under the bill now headed to the President’s desk, Rhode Islanders will benefit through:

 

  • A $150 Billion State and Local Coronavirus Relief Fund:  The legislation creates a $150 billion State and Local Coronavirus Relief Fund to provide states and localities additional resources to cope with the coronavirus pandemic. Rhode Island will receive $1.25 billion in desperately needed funds to support state and local governments.
  • $260 Billion in Dramatically Expanded Unemployment Benefits: The average worker laid off as a result of this pandemic will receive four months of full pay. Rhode Islanders are eligible for up to 39 weeks of unemployment benefits (an additional 13 weeks over previous levels). In addition, self-employed workers, independent contractors, and gig economy workers are covered.
  • Immediate Direct Cash Payments for Working Americans: $1,200 for each adult and $500 for each child, beginning to phase out at an annual income of $75,000 for an individual and $150,000 for a household. These payments will provide Rhode Islanders with the cash they need right now to survive with much of the economy currently shut down.
  • More Than $375 Billion in Small Business Relief: $349 billion for forgivable loans to small businesses to pay their employees and keep them on the payroll. $17 billion for debt relief for current and new SBA borrowers. $10 billion in immediate disaster grants.
  • $200 Billion for Hospitals, Health Care Workers, and Research: This includes expanded funding for the personal protective equipment desperately needed by health care workers, including ventilators, n95 masks, gowns, gloves, and more.
  • $104.6 Million for Public Transit: The bill provides $25 billion to transit agencies, which have all seen a drastic drop in revenues as social distancing has been implemented.  This funding is to be used to protect the jobs of the employees of the transit agencies, funding their paychecks during this public health emergency. Rhode Island will receive $104.6 million.
  • $9.9 Million in HUD Emergency Solution Grants: The bill provides $2 billion for HUD Emergency Solution Grants to states. These grants address the impact of the coronavirus among individuals and families who are homeless or at risk of homelessness. Rhode Island will receive $9.9 million.
  • $8.1 Million for Child Care and Development: This emergency funding supports child care and early education.
  • $4.8 Million for Low-Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP): Money that will help working families pay their heating and cooling bills.
  • $4 Million for Law Enforcement: Using the Byrne-Justice Assistance Grant Program, the legislation will help Rhode Island law enforcement agencies obtain the personal protective equipment and other medical items they may need during this public health emergency. 
  • $5.4 Million in CDC Coronavirus State, Local and Tribal Grants Minimum Awards: Resources to help agencies cope with the public health emergency. Rhode Island will receive a minimum of $5.4 million. In addition, the State can apply for additional funds above the minimum award, based on needs.
  • $3 Million in Election Assistance: Coronavirus is already resulting in the postponement of the Rhode Island presidential primary and this funding can help make voting safer for individuals.  Funding can be used, for example, to increase the ability to vote by mail, expand early voting, and expand online registration.

 

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