WASHINGTON, D.C. – Today, U.S. Senators Jacky Rosen (D-NV) and Catherine Cortez Masto (D-NV) released a statement after voting in favor of the third bipartisan coronavirus package. The legislative package passed the Senate by a vote of 96 to 0.
“The coronavirus pandemic is continuing to stress our health care system and disrupting the lives and livelihoods of Nevadans,” said the Senators. “This latest bipartisan spending package provides immediate economic support to Nevada workers and families, our small businesses, local, state and tribal governments, supports the Silver State’s major gaming and tourism industries, and delivers crucial funding and resources to the health care providers, hospitals and medical facilities on the frontlines of this pandemic.
“Nevada’s workers, families, and small businesses will receive relief in the form of small business loans and emergency grants, four months of additional unemployment insurance, and direct financial support to help families get back on their feet. In addition, this package includes funding, financing, and tax relief to help Nevada’s travel and tourism industry, so that Nevadans can get back to work.
“In order for America to get through this public health crisis, we must work together in Congress to ensure that our country has the resources we need. We’re committed to fighting for bipartisan solutions that put the health and financial well-being of Nevadans and Americans across our country first,” the Senators continued. “This legislation does that by targeting assistance to our health care workers, emergency first responders, working families, local, state and tribal governments, and small businesses, as well as our nation’s most vulnerable during this challenging time. We will continue fighting to protect the health of Nevadans and the livelihood of Nevada workers.”
BACKGROUND: Several key provisions of this legislative package include:
• Four months of enhanced unemployment insurance, including pandemic unemployment assistance for individuals who are unable to work due to the public health emergency
o Provides an additional 13 weeks of unemployment compensation for individuals who have exhausted their state unemployment benefits.
o Covers ALL workers, including self-employed workers, gig workers, independent contractors, part-time workers, and individuals with limited work histories.
o Provides an additional $600 in Federal Pandemic Unemployment Compensation to every weekly unemployment benefit until July 31, 2020.
o Gives state unemployment agencies flexibility to staff up quickly.
• Financial assistance to keep airline employees in their jobs:
o $25 billion to passenger air carriers; $4 billion to cargo air carriers; $3 billion to contractors
o Requires airline employers to refrain from involuntary furloughs or layoffs before September 30, 2020
TAX REBATES FOR INDIVIDUALS
• A single tax filer will receive a one-time payment of $1,200. Joint filers will receive $2,400. If a filer has children, they will also receive $500 per child.
o The rebate amount starts phasing out at $75,000 annual income for a single filer and $150,000 annual income for joint filers. Filers under this amount will receive the full rebate. All claimants must have a valid SSN, except for spouses of active military. If a claimant filed a tax return in 2018 or 2019, or receives Social Security benefits, they will receive the rebate automatically.
SUPPORTING NEVADA TRAVEL & TOURISM AND OUR KEY INDUSTRIES
• Temporary retention tax credit for employers to encourage businesses to keep workers on payroll during the crisis if experiencing economic hardship due to COVID-19.
• $10 billion in grants to help airports
• $100 million to TSA for enhanced sanitation at airport security checkpoints, overtime and travel costs, and the purchase of explosives trace detection swabs.
• More than $6.5 billion in funding for CDBG, the Economic Development Administration, and the Manufacturing Extension Partnership to help mitigate the local economic crisis and rebuild impacted industries such as tourism or manufacturing supply chains.
• Provides $500 billion to Treasury’s Exchange Stabilization Fund to provide loans, loan guarantees, and other investments to industry.
o No stock buybacks or dividends for the length of any loan provided by the Treasury plus one year.
o Protect collective bargaining agreements
STRENGTHENING OUR HEALTH CARE
• $100 billion for a new program to provide direct aid to health care institutions on the front line of this crisis
• $16 billion to replenish the Strategic National Stockpile supplies of pharmaceuticals, personal protective equipment, and other medical supplies, which are distributed to State and local health agencies, hospitals and other healthcare entities facing shortages during emergencies.
• $4.3 billion to support federal, state, and local public health agencies.
• $3.5 billion for BARDA to expand the production of vaccines, therapeutics, and diagnostics to help combat this pandemic.
• $1 billion for the Defense Production Act, enabling industry to quickly ramp up production of personal protective equipment, ventilators, and other urgently needed medical supplies, PLUS billions of dollars more for federal, state, and local health agencies to purchase such equipment.
• Older Americans Act funding flexibility to transfer among accounts, allow home delivered meals for seniors
• Allows Medicare coverage for telehealth from health centers and rural health clinics, use of telehealth to order hospice, allows telehealth for new patients.
PROTECTING OUR SMALL BUSINESSES
• $10 billion for SBA emergency grants of up to $10,000 to provide immediate relief for small business operating costs.
• $17 billion for SBA to cover 6 months of payments for small businesses with existing SBA loans.
• $350 billion in loan forgiveness grants to small businesses and nonprofits to maintain existing workforce and help pay for other expenses like rent, mortgage, and utilities.
ENSURING OUR CHILDREN’S EDUCATION
• $30.75 billion for grants to provide emergency support to local school systems and higher education institutions.
• Directs the Secretary to suspend all federal student loan payments for 6 months (through Sept. 30, 2020), without accrual of interest.
• Allows institutions of higher education to use funding to pay work-study students unable to complete work-study obligations due to emergency.
• $150 billion for a state, tribal, and local Coronavirus Relief fund.
• $1 billion for the Indian Health Service to support the Coronavirus response in Indian Country.
• More than $7 billion for affordable housing and homelessness assistance programs.
• $200 million for the FCC Connected Care Pilot Program- this program supports efforts of health care providers to address COVID-19 by using telehealth to connect with patients.
• $75 million for the Corporation for Public Broadcasting to make stabilization grants to public television and radio stations facing declines in non-Federal revenues. These funds will help maintain programming and preserve small and rural stations threatened by declines in non-Federal revenues.
• $3.5 billion in additional funding for the Child Care Development Block Grant to provide child care assistance to health care sector employees, emergency responders, sanitation workers, and other workers deemed essential during the response to the coronavirus.
• $25 million to USDA Distance Learning, Telemedicine, and Broadband Program.