Congress Approves American Rescue Plan Act
Washington, DC -- U.S. Representative Mike Doyle (D-PA-18) announced that the House passed H.R. 1319, the American Rescue Plan Act, today with his support and will be sending it to the White House for the President’s signature enacting it into law.
“The American Rescue Plan Act will save lives, help our struggling neighbors, help reopen our schools safely, and help put our economy on the path to recovery.” Congressman Doyle said after passage of the bill. “Although vaccination efforts are in full swing, the United States continues to average over 50,000 new COVID cases a day. Given that fact, as well as the millions of Americans who remain unemployed and are struggling to feed their families, the need to pass this bill couldn’t be more urgent.”
The American Rescue Plan Act is $1.9 trillion legislation to help end the COVID pandemic, reopen schools safely, help individuals and small businesses affected economically by the pandemic, and get the economy back on track. Here are some details of the American Rescue Plan Act, highlighting the provisions that will help many Americans:
Speed Up Vaccinations and Reopen Schools Safely
- COVID: $160 Billion to create a national vaccination program and speed up the distribution of vaccines, including partnering with state and local governments and setting up community vaccination centers around the United States. The money will also be used to expand testing and contract tracing programs across the country, especially in communities of color, which have been disproportionately affected by the pandemic.
- SCHOOLS: $130 Billion to provide schools with the resources they need to reopen safely. Grants would be provided to school districts to purchase personal protective equipment (PPE) and other supplies. Other provisions include strengthening and expanding federal nutrition programs to address the current hunger crisis for school children and their families. Any future student loan forgiveness passed between December 2020 and January 2026 will also be considered non taxable income under this bill.
Help for Families and Americans Who’ve Been Hit the Hardest
- STIMULUS CHECKS: Giving working families an additional direct payment of $1,400 per person.
- UNEMPLOYMENT: Extending federal unemployment benefits through September 6 and increasing the federal supplemental payment from $300 a week to $400 per week. Up to $10,200 in unemployment benefits received in 2020 are exempt from federal income taxes for households making less than $150,000.
- CHILD TAX CREDIT: Expanding the child tax credit. Parents would receive a monthly benefit of $300 per child for those age 5 and younger — and $250 per child ages 6 to 17 — for a year. The child tax credit would also be fully refundable and is expected to lift over 27 million children out of poverty.
- HOUSING: Providing funding for housing and rental assistance and extending the eviction and foreclosure moratoriums until September 30, 2021.
- HUNGER: $16 billion to strengthen and expand federal nutrition programs like SNAP and WIC to address the current hunger crisis.
- CHILD CARE: Providing support for child care providers by increasing funding and expanding access to grants.
- HEALTH INSURANCE: Ensuring that unemployed and low-income Americans can obtain affordable health insurance.
- REMOTE LEARNING: $7.1 billion to close the homework gap and provide qualifying students with home internet access and connected devices.
- VETERANS: Providing funding to help the VA meet the health and economic needs of our nation's veterans, including funds to waive copays for treatment and help the VA reduce the claims and appeals backlogs caused by COVID.
Support for Struggling Communities
- STATE AND LOCAL GOVERNMENTS: Providing resources to prevent layoffs of first responders, public health workers, teachers, transit workers, and other essential civil servants.
- SMALL BUSINESSES: Providing additional assistance to small businesses to help stores on Main Streets around the country to stay open, keep their employees on payroll, and continue serving their communities - including additional funding for the Payroll Protection Program (PPP) and Economic Injury Disaster Loans (EIDL) and restaurant grants, expanded PPP eligibility for nonprofits, and support for shuttered and struggling live venues.
Experts like Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen, Fed Chairman Jerome Powell, even Former Top Trump Economic Adviser Kevin Hassett agree that Congress Needed to “Go Big” on COVID Relief.
- A Standard & Poor’s (S&P) analysis determined that the American Rescue Plan would restore the economy to pre-pandemic levels by this summer.
- A Moody’s Analytics assessment projected that the American Rescue Plan would take us to full employment a year faster than we would get there without it; this assessment projected over 7.5 million jobs created in 2021 and 2.5 million created in 2022.
Click here for the text of the American Rescue Plan Act.
Click here for a title-by-title summary of the American Rescue Plan Act.
Click here for a one-page summary of the American Rescue Plan Act.