Before rounding the corner and homing in on home plate—Inauguration Day 2021—President-Elect Joe Biden unveiled his $1.9 trillion American Rescue Plan, an add-on to Congress’s March $3 Trillion COVID relief plan and December’s $900 billion.
Here’s a quick—albeit incomplete—look at how those dollars will be spent, starting with the $170 billion earmarked for K-12 schools, colleges, and universities.
- Stimulus payments of $1,400 per person to those eligible, on top of the $600 approved in December.
- $25 billion in rental assistance for low- and moderate-income households that lost jobs during the pandemic in addition to December’s $25 billion.
- $5 billion to help renters struggling to pay their utility bills.
- $5 billion to help states & localities help those at risk of homelessness.
- $3 billion to help women, infants, & children secure food.
- Give $1 billion in nutrition assistance.
- Calls on Congress to create a $25 billion emergency fund.
- Add $15 billion to a grant program already in place to help child care providers.
- Boost the Child Tax Credit to $3,600 for children under 6, $3,000 for those between 6 and 17—and fully refundable.
- Raise the Earned Income Tax Credit for one year to almost $1,500 for childless couples and raise the income limit requirement to about $21,000.
- Increase & expand the Affordable Care Act’s premium subsidies, so no more than 8.5% of income goes to coverage.
- $4 billion for mental health and substance abuse disorder.
- $20 billion for veterans’ health care.
- Paid sick and family leave benefits until September 30.
- 14 weeks of paid leave for those sick or quarantining, or caring for a child whose school is closed.
- $15 billion for new small business owner grant programs, unrelated to the Paycheck Protection Program.
- $350 billion to state, local & territorial governments for frontline workers, vaccine distribution, testing, reopening schools, and maintaining vital services.
- $20 billion to hardest-hit public transit agencies to avoid layoffs and route cuts.
- $20 billion for a national vaccination program.
- $50 billion for testing, rapid tests, expanded lab capacity, etc.
- Raise the minimum wage to $15 an hour.
Like I said, incomplete but a snapshot of where we’re going…
With my many thanks and well wishes, Carol