Congressman Doyle Demands Action on CARES Act
Washington, DC – April 8, 2020 – U.S. Representative Mike Doyle (PA-18) demanded that the U.S. Department of the Treasury issue guidance for the implementation of economic relief provisions included in the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act, which was signed into law on March 27, 2020.
“The CARES Act has the potential to help struggling families and small businesses keep body and soul together during this COVID-19 pandemic. It will put direct payments in the pockets of Americans, expand unemployment compensation for those who are not usually eligible, and provide small business grants and loans.
“But we are still waiting to see it put into action. The Treasury Department has yet to issue guidance about how Americans such as SSI and VA recipients will get their rebates. These folks are already struggling to make ends meet, and the Treasury Department is not acting with the urgency that this serious public health and economic crisis requires. We must make sure the most vulnerable Americans don’t slip through the cracks. I am working to get them the answers they need.”
Recently, Congressman Doyle sent a letter with a number of his House colleagues to Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin and IRS Commissioner Charles Rettig, urging the agencies to ensure that individuals receiving Supplemental Security Income (SSI) and Veterans Affairs (VA) compensation and pension benefits get their rebates automatically. These individuals include low-income seniors, individuals with disabilities, and disabled or homeless veterans. To read this letter, please click here.
Congressman Doyle also sent a letter with over 50 of his colleagues to the House Leadership pointing out that many low-income families have no federal income tax liability and therefore are unlikely to have shared their direct deposit information with the Internal Revenue Service. To read this letter, click here.
In addition, Congressman Doyle is a cosponsor of the Strengthening UI for Coronavirus Impacted Workers and Students Act. This legislation would ensure that receiving Federal Pandemic Unemployment Compensation benefits does not disqualify Americans from federal means-tested benefits. While the CARES Act specifies that these benefits are not counted as income for the purpose of determining eligibility for Medicaid or the Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP), it does not extend this to other means-tested programs such as the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) and federally assisted housing benefits (Section 8). Additionally, it would make the Federal Pandemic Unemployment Compensation benefit retroactive to the date President Trump declared a national emergency, March 13, 2020. Finally, it would provide $300 a week to individuals working part-time and recent graduates qualified to enter the workforce but unable to do so due to the pandemic.