What’s in the $2 Trillion Federal Disaster Relief Package?

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What’s in the $2 Trillion Federal Disaster Relief Package?

Economy News | March 25, 2020
By: Brooke Thomson

(This article will be updated as events develop during the day)

The Senate and White House have reached agreement on a $2 Trillion economic stimulus bill.

The measure is expected to inject money into the economy, providing tax rebates, four months of expanded unemployment benefits and a slew of business tax-relief provisions aimed at shoring up individual, family and business finances.

  • The deal includes $500 billion for a major corporate liquidity program through the Federal Reserve, $367 billion for a small business loan program, $100 billion for hospitals and $150 billion for state and local governments.
  • A one-time check of $1,200 will go to Americans who make up to $75,000. Individuals with no or little tax liability would receive the same amount, unlike the initial GOP proposal that would have given them a minimum of $600.
  • The legislation creates an inspector general and oversight committee for the corporate assistance program, similar to what was done for the Troubled Asset Relief Program of a decade ago, according to the senior administration official.

The AIM GA team is closely monitoring developments for additional details or important public-policy items included in this legislation.

Should you have specific questions regarding federal or state legislative activity please contact us.

Key Highlights for Massachusetts businesses:

Business:

  • Creates an employee retention tax credit to incentivize businesses to keep workers on payroll during the crisis.
  • Appropriates $562 million to help small businesses by ensuring the Small Business Administration (SBA) has the resources to provide Economic Injury Disaster Loans (EIDL) to businesses that need financial support. The money will help businesses keep their doors open and pay their employees.
  • Appropriates more than $6.5 billion in Federal 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 $1 billion for the Defense Production Act to bolster domestic supply chains, enabling industry to quickly ramp up production of personal protective equipment, ventilators, and other urgently needed medical supplies. The measure includes billions of dollars more for federal, state, and local health agencies to purchase such equipment.

Health Care, Public Health and Mental Health: 

  • $100 billion for a new program to provide direct aid to health-care institutions on the front line of this crisis—hospitals, public entities, not-for profit entities, and Medicare and Medicaid enrolled suppliers and institutional providers—to cover costs.
  • $200 million for the Center for Medicaid Services (CMS) to assist nursing homes with infection control and support states as they work to save lives and mitigate the spread of COVID-19 in nursing homes.
  • $450 million for The Emergency Food Assistance Program(TEFAP) to assist food banks across the country.
  • $425 million to increase access to mental health services in communities.
  • More than $7 billion for affordable housing and homelessness assistance programs.  This funding will help low-income and working class Americans avoid evictions and minimize any impacts caused by loss of employment, child care, or other unforeseen circumstances related to COVID-19, and support additional assistance to prevent eviction and for people experiencing homelessness.
  • $900 million for LIHEAP to help lower income households heat and cool their homes.
  • $15.85 billion for to help our nation’s veterans, including to help treat COVID-19, purchase test kits, and procure personal protective equipment for clinicians, and $590 million in dedicated funding to treat vulnerable veterans, including homeless veterans and those in VA-run nursing homes.

Education:

  • $30.75 billion for grants to provide emergency support to local school systems and higher education institutions to continue to provide educational services to their students and support the ongoing functionality of school districts and institutions.
  • $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.

First Responders, State and Local Government Disaster Relief

  • $4.3 billion to support federal, state, and local public health agencies to prevent, prepare for, and respond to the coronavirus, including for the purchase of personal protective equipment; laboratory testing to detect positive cases; infection control and mitigation at the local level to prevent the spread of the virus; and other public health preparedness and response activities.
  • Nearly $1.5 billion for National Guard support to States and territories to support Title 32 operations, which have been ordered to commence in New York, California, and Washington.
  • $45 billion for FEMA’s Disaster Relief Fund to provide for the immediate needs of state, local, tribal, and territorial governments to protect citizens and help them recovery from the overwhelming effects of COVID-19.  Reimbursable activities may include medical response, personal protective equipment, National Guard deployment, coordination of logistics, safety measures, and community services nationwide
  • $3.5 billion for BARDA to expand the production of vaccines, therapeutics, and diagnostics to help combat this pandemic.
  • $400 million for FEMA grants, including
  • $100 million Assistance to Firefighter Grants to provide personal protective equipment, supplies, and reimbursements.
  •  $100 million for Emergency Management Performance Grants which focus on emergency preparedness
  • $200 million for the Emergency Food and Shelter Program which provides shelter, food, and supportive services through local service organizations.

Transportation:

  • $25 billion in aid the nation’s transit systems to protect public health and safety while ensuring access to jobs, medical treatment, food, and other essential services.
  • $10 billion in grants to help our nation’s airports as the aviation sector grapples with the most steep and potentially sustained decline in air travel in history.

Other highlights:

  • $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.
  • At least $250 million to expand the Hospital Preparedness Program’s support of emergency preparedness, including the National Ebola and Special Pathogens Training and Education Center (NETEC), regional, State and local special pathogens treatment centers, and hospital preparedness cooperative agreements.
  • $260 million for Navy operations and maintenance, including funds to support the deployment of the USNS Comfort hospital ship to New York City and the USNS Mercy to Los Angeles.
  • $850 million in Byrne-JAG grants for state and local law enforcement and jails to purchase personal protective equipment, medical supplies, and overtime.
  • Funding to strengthen response capacity and support tribal communities, including:
  • $400 million in election assistance for the states to help prepare for the 2020 election cycle, including to increase the ability to vote by mail, expand early voting and online registration, and increase the safety of voting in-person by providing additional voting facilities and more poll-workers.