$908 Billion in Relief for Struggling Americans, Businesses, Special Interests, from Washington. No Relief for States’ Loss of Revenues. Details Sketchy. STIMULUS PAYMENTS CONTINUE BUT CUT IN HALF. END IN MARCH.

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WPCNR WASHINGTON WIRE. From The Associated Press. December 20, 2020:

The Associated Press reported late Sunday evening that congress agreed to enact a $300 “bonus jobless benefit” per week lasting through March.

There will be new round of 11 weeks of a $600 direct stimulus payment to most Americans and a new round of subsidies for hard-hit businesses and money for schools, health care providers and renters facing eviction, no details provided yet.

There was no relief for states income losses due to coronavirus and economic tax and revenue losses as many governors, including Governor Andrew M. Cuomo have called on Washington and their representatives in congress to deliver for 10 months.

Congressional leaders Senator Charles Schumer and Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi said this bill was “just the first step” and the states’ economic needs would be addressed later.

The $300 per week bonus jobless benefit was one half the supplemental federal unemployment benefit provided under the $1.8 billion CARES Act last March and would be limited to 11 weeks instead of 16 weeks.

The additional direct $600 stimulus payment to most people would also be half the previous $1,200 March payment, contingent on lower payments after $75,000 in income

“We put our heads down and worked around the clock for nearly a month to produce a bipartisan, bicameral bill to address the emergency needs of our country,” the bipartisan group of about a dozen lawmakers said in a statement. “Our consensus bill was the foundation of this final package.”

The sustaining of aid to unemployed Americans is part of the Government appropriations bill, scheduled to be voted on Monday in both houses.

There is $284 Billion agreed to for the Paycheck Protection Program,providing more Paycheck Protection Program grants (with no details provided yet) to “hard hit businesses,” as the AP called them. There were also grants for low-income and minority communities, no details.

These “Benies” include $25 billion in rental assistance (no details yet), $15 billion for theaters and other live venues, $82 billion for local schools, colleges and universities, and $10 billion for child care.

The AP said a $1.4 Billion payment was likely to provide a last $1.4 billion payment for the U.S.-Mexico border wall “as a condition of winning President Donald Trump’s approving the Apropriations Bill that funds the U.S. through next September.

There’s more:

  • $10 billion for 46 Army Corps of Engineers flood control, environmental and coastal protection projects.
  • Extension expiring tax breaks for craft brewers wineries and distillersAnother addition would extend a batch of soon-to-expire tax breaks, including one for craft brewers, wineries and distillers.

  • Clean energy provisions
  • $7 billion to increase access to broadband,
  • $4 billion to help other nations vaccinate their people.
  • $14 billion for transit systems, Amtrak and airports.
  • $22 Billion more to help states and localities with COVID-19
  • Relief for persons with sky high medical expenses, which the AP attributed to health care providers drop out of insurance networks.

“We put our heads down and worked around the clock for nearly a month to produce a bipartisan, bicameral bill to address the emergency needs of our country,” the bipartisan group of about a dozen lawmakers said in a statement. “Our consensus bill was the foundation of this final package.”

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