POLITICS Here’s what’s in the $2 trillion coronavirus stimulus bill
PUBLISHED WED, MAR 25 202010:18 PM EDTUPDATED AN HOUR AGO
The Senate passes a roughly $2 trillion economic relief plan in response to the coronavirus pandemic.
It includes direct payments to Americans, strengthened unemployment insurance, loans to businesses small and large and increased health care resources for hospitals, states and municipalities.
It is unclear when the House will pass the legislation, though it aims to do so Friday.
A view of the Capitol’s Rotunda is seen reflected in an ambulance as negotiations on a COVID-19 economic bailout continue on Capitol Hill March 24, 2020, in Washington, DC.
Brendan Smialowski | AFP | Getty Images
The Senate approved an unprecedented stimulus bill Wednesday, estimated to cost $2 trillion, as Congress tries to lessen the coronavirus pandemic’s human and economic toll.
The chamber passed the legislation Wednesday night as workers face widespread layoffs, hospitals and states starve for resources and businesses small and large worry about their survival. The House aims to pass it by Friday.
The bill, designed to offer relief to individuals, the health care system and even an entire corporate sector ravaged by the outbreak, would:
Give direct payments of up to $1,200 for individuals and $2,400 for couples, with $500 added for every child, based on 2019 tax returns for those who filed them and 2018 information, if they have not. The benefit would start to phase out above $75,000 in income for individuals and $150,000 for couples, going away completely at the $99,000 and $198,000 thresholds, respectively
Boost unemployment insurance, adding $600 per week for up to four months on top of what beneficiaries normally receive from states. It expands eligibility to self-employed people and independent contractors
Create a $500 billion pool of taxpayer money to make loans, loan guarantees or investments to or in businesses, states and municipalites damaged by the crisis
Give $25 billion in grants to airlines and $4 billion to cargo carriers to be used exclusively to pay employee wages, salaries and benefits, and set aside another $25 billion and $4 billion, respectively, for loans and loan guarantees
Provide $17 billion in loans and loan guarantees for unspecified “businesses critical to maintaining national security”
Put $117 billion into hospitals and veterans’ health care
Provide $16 billion for the strategic national stockpile of pharmaceutical and medical supplies
Give $350 billion in loans for small businesses to cover salary, wages and benefits, worth 250% of an employer’s monthly payroll, with a maximum loan of $10 million
Include a tax credit for retaining employees, worth up to 50% of wages paid during the crisis, for businesses forced to suspend operations or that have seen gross receipts fall by 50% from the previous year
Require group health plans and insurance providers to cover preventive services related to coronavirus without cost sharing
Delay payroll tax for employers, requiring half of the deferred tax to be paid by the end of 2021 and the other half by the end of 2022
Ban companies that take government loans from buying back stock until a year after the loan is paid back
Bar employees or executives who made at least $425,000 last year from getting a raise
Stop President Donald Trump and his family members’ businesses from receiving emergency taxpayer relief. The provision also applies to Vice President Mike Pence, heads of executive departments, members of Congress and their family members
Suspend federal student loan payments through Sept. 30 with no accrual of interest on those loans
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