In March 2021, a year after the official beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic, the fully Democratic Party controlled Congress sent President Joe Biden their version of a COVID relief bill to sign, a bill that was rejected by the entire Republican Party. In this episode, examine the new law in detail to learn how it could help you and to judge whether this new law was something you would have liked your representatives in Congress to support.
Executive Producer: Michael Constantino
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CD213: CARES Act – The Trillions for COVID-19 Law
CD161: Veterans Choice Program
American Rescue Plan Outline
The American Rescue Plan Act of 2021
TITLE I – COMMITTEE ON AGRICULTURE, NUTRITION, AND FORESTRY
Subtitle A – Agriculture
Sec. 1001: Food Supply Chain and Agriculture Pandemic Response
- Appropriates $4 billion for food purchases and grants for food suppliers to protect their workers from COVID
Sec. 1002: Emergency Rural Development Grants For Rural Health Care
- Appropriates $500 million for “emergency pilot program” grants to impoverished rural communities to help them distribute vaccines with infrastructure and staffing, give them medical supplies, reimburse them for lost revenue. The program has to be in operation by mid-August 2021.
Sec. 1005: Farm Loan Assistance for Socially Disadvantaged Farmers and Ranchers
- Provides “such sums as may be necessary” for the Secretary of Agriculture (Tom Vilsack) to give “socially disadvantaged farmers and ranchers” payments covering “up to 120% of the outstanding indebtedness” as of January 1, 2021, which will pay off loans they received from the Farm Service Agency or Commodity Credit Corporation and loans guaranteed by the Department of Agriculture. “Socially disadvantaged farmers” are farmers or ranchers who “have been subjected to racial or ethnic prejudice because of their identity as members of a group without regard to their individual qualities.”
Subtitle B – Nutrition
Sec. 1101: Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program
- Extends food assistance benefits provided by the Coronabus from June 30, 2021 to September 30, 2021 and appropriates an additional $1.15 billion.
Sec. 1103: Additional Funding For Nutrition Assistance Programs
- Provides $1 billion in food assistance benefits to be split among the territories, which they will have until September 30, 2027 to use.
Sec. 1105: Improvements to WIC Benefits
- Allows, but does not require, the Secretary of Agriculture to increase the amount of WIC benefits by $35 until July 11, 2021, if requested by the states. Appropriates $490 million.
Sec. 1108: Pandemic EBT Program
- The Family’s First Coronavirus Response Act said that during 2020 and 2021, if a school is closed for more than 5 consecutive days under a public health emergency designation, families of children who are eligible for free or discounted school lunches will be able to get benefits valued at least as much as the school meals, to be distributed via the food stamp program, with money on EBT cards. This changes the dates so that it’s valid “in any school year in which there is a public health emergency declaration” or “in a covered summer period following a school session” which will allow the state to continue the benefits for 90 days so that kids can continue to receive the meal credits during the emergency summers.
TITLE II – COMMITTEE ON HEALTH, LABOR, AND PENSIONS
Subtitle A – Education Matters
Part 1 – Department of Education
Sec. 2001: Elementary and Secondary School Emergency Relief Fund
- Appropriates over $122.7 billion, which can be used through September 30, 2023, for grants to the states. 90% of the money has to be given to local education agencies, including charter schools. 20% of the money needs to be used to address learning loss, via summer programs and extended school days and school years. The rest of the money can be spent at the local agencies discretion for activities they’re already authorized to use Federal tax money for and to fund measures needed to protect students and staff from COVID. Any money not used must be returned to the Secretary of Education after one year.
Sec. 2002: Emergency Assistance to Non-Public Schools
- Appropriates $2.75 billion, which can be used through September 30, 2023, for private schools that “enroll a significant percentage of low-income students and are most impacted by the qualifying emergency.”
Sec. 2003: Higher Education Emergency Relief Fund
- Appropriates $39.5 billion, which can be used through September 30, 2023, for colleges and universities.
Part 2 – Miscellaneous
Sec. 2021: National Endowment for the Arts
- Appropriates $135 million for the National Endowment for the Arts
Sec. 2022: National Endowment for the Humanities
- Appropriates $135 million for the National Endowment for the Humanities
Sec. 2023: Institute of Museum and Library Services
- Appropriates $200 million for the Institute of Museum and Library Services
Subtitle B – Labor Matters
Sec. 2101: Funding for Department of Labor Worker Protection Activities
- Appropriates $200 million, with half of that going to OSHA. Only $5 million is required to be spent on “enforcement activities related to COVID-19 at high risk workplaces”
Subtitle C – Human Services and Community Supports
Sec. 2201: Child Care and Development Block Grant Program
- Appropriates almost $15 billion, which has to be used before September 30, 2021, for the Child Care and Development Block Grant Program, which gives money to states for child care for low income families with children under the age of 13. States are authorized to provide child care funding to health care employees, emergency responders, and “other workers deemed essential” regardless of their income levels during the emergency period.
Sec. 2202: Child Care Stabilization
- Appropriates almost $24 billion for states to give to child care providers, regardless of any other federal money they have received. The grant will be determined by the child care provider’s operating expenses and can be used to pay for employee salaries, benefits, and recruitment; rent or mortages; PPE and training; and mental health support for children or employees.
Subtitle D – Public Health
Sec. 2301: Funding for COVID-19 Vaccine Activities at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
- Appropriates $7.5 billion for the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention to plan, prepare for, promote, distribute, administer, monitor, and track COVID-19 vaccines.
Sec. 2302: Funding for Vaccine Confidence Activities
- Appropriates $1 billion, that does not expire, for the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention for activities “to strengthen vaccine confidence in the United States” in order to “improve rates of vaccination throughout the United States”
Sec. 2303: Funding for Supply Chain for COVID-19 Vaccines, Therapeutics, and Medical Supplies
- Appropriates a little over $6 billion, which does not expire, “for necessary expenses with respect to research, development, manufacturing, production, and the purchase of vaccines, therapeutics, and ancillary medical products” to prevent and respond to COVID and “any disease with potential for creating a pandemic.”
Sec. 2305: Reduced Cost-Sharing
- Expands subsidies for health insurance provided by the Affordable Care Act to anyone who has been approved for unemployment insurance in 2021, and their subsidy level will be determined as if they didn’t make more than 133% above the poverty level, regardless of actual income. This makes them eligible for the most general subsidy levels, which reduces their out-of-pocket limit by two-thirds and the insurance provider must pay 90% of health care costs.
Subtitle E – Testing
Sec. 2401: Funding for COVID-19 Testing, Contact Tracing, and Mitigation Activities
- Appropriates $47.8 billion, which does not expire, to “detect, diagnose, trace, and monitor SARS-CoV-2 and COVID-19 infections”. This money must be used to implement a national testing and contract tracing strategy, provide technical assistance to states, “support the development, manufacturing, procurement, distribution, and administration of tests”, which includes the supplies needed for those tests, PPE, and “the acquisition, construction, alteration, or renovation of non-federally owned facilities.”
Sec. 2402: Funding for Sara-COV-2 Genomic Sequencing and Surveillance
- Appropriates $1.75 billion for genomic sequencing, analytics, and disease surveillance, which will identify mutations and survey their transmission in our communities. This money can be used to “award grants for the construction, alteration, or renovation of facilities to improve genomic sequencing and surveillance capabilities at the State and local level.”
Sec. 2403: Funding for Global Health
- Appropriates $750 million to combat COVID “and other emerging infectious disease threats globally”
Subtitle F – Public Health Workforce
Sec. 2501: Funding for Public Health Workplace
- Appropriates $7.66 billion, which does not expire, to fund the creation and expansion of local public health workforces. The money will be granted to states who will then fund the wages and benefits for individuals hired to be contract tracers, community health workers, epidemiologists, laboratory personnel, communications and policy experts who are employed by the government or a non-profit, which can be public or private.
Subtitle G – Public Health Investments
Sec. 2601: Funding for Community Health Centers and Community Care
- Appropriates $7.6 billion, which does not expire, for grants for community health centers, which can be used for vaccine distribution, testing and contact tracing, to hire health care workers, and for community outreach. This money can be used to reimburse community health centers that they provided for COVID response sine January 31, 2020.
Subtitle H – Mental Health and Substance Use Disorder
Sec. 2701: Funding for Block Grants For Community Mental Health Services
- Appropriates $1.5 billion, that must be spent by September 30, 2025, for states to give to mental health service providers.
Sec. 2702: Funding For Block Grants For Prevention and Treatment of Substance Abuse
- Appropriates $1.5 billion, that must be spent by September 30, 2025, for states to give to substance abuse treatment providers.
Subtitle K – Ratepayer Protection
- Appropriates $4.5 billion, that expires on September 30, 2022, for payment for energy expenses of low income families.
Subtitle L – Assistance for Older Americans, Grandfamilies, and Kinship Families
Sec. 2921: Supporting Older Americans and Their Families
- Appropriates over $1.4 billion for COVID related expenses of senior citizens.
TITLE III – COMMITTEE ON BANKING, HOUSING, AND URBAN AFFAIRS
Subtitle A – Defense Production Act of 1950
Sec. 3101: COVID-19 Emergency Medical Supplies Enhancement
- Appropriates $10 billion, available until September 30, 2025, to use the Defense Production Act for “the purchase, production (including the construction, repair, and retrofitting of government-owned or private facilities as necessary)” for distributing medical supplies and equipment to combat the COVID-19 pandemic.
- Starting on September 30, 2022, the money left over can be used for any activity “necessary to meet critical public health needs of the United States, as determined by the President.
Subtitle B – Housing Provisions
Sec. 3201: Emergency Rental Assistance
- Appropriates over $21.5 billion (on top of the $25 billion provided by the Coronabus), available until September 30, 2027, for grants to states that will be used to pay rent, utilities and “other expenses related to housing incurred due, directly or indirectly,” to COVID for up to 18 months. People who qualify for unemployment benefits, had their income reduced, are low income, or can demonstrate that they are at risk of homelessness. The payments will be made directly to the landlord until the landlord does not agree to accept the payment, in which case the household can receive the money.
- All eligible grantees (states and territories) must be given at least 40% of their payments by May 11
- States and territories can use up to 15% of the money for administration
- Unused money will begin to be returned and redistributed starting on March 31, 2022
Sec. 3202: Emergency Housing Vouchers
- Appropriates $5 billion, available until September 30, 2030, for emergency housing vouchers (Section 8) to people who are homeless, at risk of homelessness, or escaping a domestic violence or human trafficking situation.
- Prohibits families from getting another voucher after their voucher expires starting on September 30, 2023.
Sec. 3205: Homelessness Assistance and Supportive Services Program
- Appropriates $5 billion, available until September 30, 2025, for “tenant-based rental assistance”, development of affordable housing, housing counseling, and individual shelters than may be converted to permanent housing. Eligible people include people who are homeless, at risk of homelessness, escaping a domestic violence or human trafficking situation, or veterans and their families if the veteran meets one of the other criteria. These services can be contracted out and the government “shall” enter into contracts “that cover the actual total program costs and administrative overhead”
Sec. 3206: Homeowner Assistance Fund
- Appropriates over $9.9 billion, available until September 30, 2025, for a new Homeowner Assistance Fund. The fund will make payments “for the purpose of preventing homeowner mortgage delinquencies, defaults, foreclosures, loss of utilities… of homeowners experiencing financial hardship after January 21, 2020.”
- Assistance will include payments of mortgages, payments to take a loan out of forbearance, principal reduction, facilitating interest rate reductions, payments for utilities and internet service, insurance, and homeowner association fees.
- 60% of the money given to states has to be used to help homeowners at or below the median income level for their household size or the median income level for the United States, whichever is greater. The rest of the money has to go to “socially disadvantaged individuals”.
- The states must receive their payments by April 25. If a state does not request payments by that date, that state will become ineligible for payments and the money will be divided among the other states.
Subtitle C – Small Business (SSBCI)
Sec. 3301: State Small Business Credit Initiative
- Appropriates $10 billion to bring back a program last used after the 2008 global recession to support small businesses recovering from the economic effects of the COVID-19 pandemic.
- $1.5 billion must be spent on businesses owned and controlled by “socially and economically disadvantaged individuals” This includes privately owned businesses owned 50% or more by “socially and economically disadvantaged individuals” Publicly owned businesses with 51% or more of the stock owned by “socially and economically disadvantaged individuals” Institutions where a majority of the board, account holders and the community are “socially and economically disadvantaged individuals”. “Socially and economically disadvantaged individuals” are two different legal categories, but the “economically” disadvantaged group comes from the “socially” disadvantaged group. “Socially disadvantaged individuals” are those who have been subjected to racial or ethnic prejudice or cultural bias because of their identity as a member of a group without regard to their individual qualities.
- $500 million must be spent on businesses with fewer than 10 employees, which “may” include independent contractors and sole proprietors.
Subtitle D – Public Transportation
Sec. 3401: Federal Transit Administration Grants
- Appropriates almost $30.4 billion, available until September 30, 2024, for… Over $26 billion: Urbanized area formula grants For capital projects, planning, job access and reverse commute projects and operating costs for public transportation facilities and equipment in cities with fewer than 200,000 people. Over $1.6 billion: Fixed guideway capital investment grants, For rail, ferry, and bus public transportation systems that increase the capacity of the route by at least 10%. Over $417 million: Formula grants for rural areas. For planning for rural areas, public transportation capital costs, public transportation facilities and equipment, joe access and reverse commute projects, and private providers of public transportation services. The grants cover 80% of the net project cost. $50 million: Grants for enhancing the mobility of seniors, “For public transportation projects designed, and carried out to meet the special needs of seniors and individuals with disabilities when public transportation is insufficient, inappropriate, or unavailable.”
- The money is allowed to be used for operating expenses beginning on January 20, 2020, including payroll, operating costs due to lost revenue, purchase of PPE, and the administrative leave of personnel due to service restrictions.
- Increases the government’s share of the costs from 80% to 100%.
- Prohibits money paying for route planning to be used to privatize a public transportation service.
TITLE IV – COMMITTEE ON HOMELAND SECURITY AND GOVERNMENTAL AFFAIRS
Sec. 4001: Emergency Federal Employee Leave Fund
- Appropriates $570 million, available through September 30, 2022, for up to 600 hours of paid leave for full time employees, capped at $2,800 for each bi-weekly paycheck, for employees that have to quarantine, who have COVID, is caring for a family member with COVID, or is getting vaccinated or is sick from getting the vaccination.
- Eligible employees include executive branch employees, USPS employees, and working people in the DC court system.
- Eligibility ends on September 30, 2021.
Sec. 4005: Federal Emergency Management Agency Appropriation
Appropriates $50 billion, available until September 30, 2025 for FEMA for “major disaster declarations”
For the COVID emergency declared on March 13, 2020 “and for any subsequent major disaster declarations that supercedes such emergency declaration”, FEMA funds “shall” be paid for 100% of disaster-related funeral expenses.
Sec. 4007: Emergency Food and Shelter Program Funding
- Appropriates $400 million, available until September 30, 2025 for FEMA’s emergency food and sh
TITLE V – COMMITTEE ON SMALL BUSINESS AND ENTREPRENEURSHIP
Sec. 5001: Modifications to Paycheck Protection Program
- Adds non-profit organizations with fewer then 500 employees per location to the eligibility list for forgivable PPP loans. They can be eligible if they receive up to 15% of their money from lobbying activities and that amount was less than $1 million during the tax year that ended prior to February 15, 2020.
- Adds “internet only periodical publishers” who are “assigned a North American Industry Classification System code of 519130” to be eligible for forgivable PPP loans if they have fewer than 500 employees per physical location.
- Appropriates an additional $7.25 billion to the PPP program
Sec. 5002: Targeted EIDL Advance
- Appropriates $15 billion, which does not expire, for the Small Business Administration to make loans to businesses with fewer than 300 employees in low income communities.
Sec. 5003: Support for Restaurants
- Appropriates $28.6 billion for restaurants, food stands, food trucks, caterers, bars, tasting rooms, including locations inside of airports. Does not include chains that had more than 20 locations on March 13, 2020, or publicly traded companies. $5 billion of that is reserved for businesses that made less than $500,000 in 2019. The maximum amount of each grant is $10 million, and no more than $5 million per physical location. The amount up to those caps of the grants is the amount of the business’s pandemic related revenue loss.
- Valid for expenses from February 15, 2020 through at least December 31, 2021. The Administrator of the Small Business Administration can extend that until no later than March 11, 2023.
Sec. 5005: Shuttered Venue Operators
- Appropriates an additional $1.25 billion, that doesn’t expire, to the Coronabus grant program for live performance venues. Reduces the grant amounts by any amount of PPP money that was received on or after December 27, 2020.
TITLE VII – COMMITTEE ON COMMERCE, SCIENCE, AND TRANSPORTATION
Subtitle A – Transportation and Infrastructure
Sec. 7101: Grants to the National Railroad Passenger Corporation
- Appropriates almost $1 billion to Amtrak’s Northeast Corridor and $730 million to Amtrak’s national network, available until September 30, 2024 for coronavirus related expenses.
Sec. 7102: Relief for Airports
- Appropriates $8 billion, available until September 30, 2024 for airports. No more than $800 million can be used to pay the rent and required minimum payments of airport concessions operators. To qualify for the funding, airports have to retain 90% of the number of employees they had on March 27, 2020 until September 30, 2021, unless granted a waiver due to environmental hardship.
Subtitle B – Aviation Manufacturing Jobs Protection
Sec. 7202: Payroll Support Program
- Appropriates $3 billion, available until September 30, 2023 for a new program that pays airplane manufacturers for some payroll expenses if they have “significant operations in, and a majority of its employees” in the United States, if they have laid off at least 10% of their workforce or experienced a 15% or more loss of revenue. Businesses that got money from the CARES Act or PPP program are ineligible.
Subtitle C – Airlines
Sec. 7301: Air Transportation Payroll Support Program Extension
- Appropriates $14 billion for airlines and $1 billion for contractors conditioned on their agreement not to furlough anyone or reduce pay for workers before September 30, 2021, not buy back their own stock or pay out dividends before September 30, 2022, and limit executive pay.
Subtitle D – Consumer Protection and Commerce Oversight
Sec. 7402: Funding for E-Rate Support for Emergency Educational Connections and Devices
- Appropriates over $7.1 billion, available through September 30, 2030 to reimburse elementary and high schools and libraries for new telecommunications equipment and services including wi-fi hotspots, modems, routers, and connection devices.
TITLE VIII – COMMITTEE ON VETERANS’ AFFAIRS
Sec. 8002: Funding Availability for Medical Care and Health Needs
- Appropriates $14 billion in additional funding, available until September 30, 2023 for the “Veterans Community Care program”
Sec. 8007: Prohibition on Copayments and Cost Sharing for Veterans During Emergency Relation to COVID-19
- Prohibits the Secretary of Veterans Affairs from charging any co-pay or cost sharing for health care received by a veteran, and any co-pays and cost sharing already charged must be reimbursed, for the period between April 6, 2020 and September 30, 2021. Appropriates an additional $1 billion, available until spent.
TITLE IX – COMMITTEE ON FINANCE
Subtitle A – Crisis Support for Unemployed Workers
Part 1 – Extension of CARES Act Unemployment Provisions
Sec. 9011: Extension of Pandemic Unemployment Assistance
- Extends unemployment benefits through September 6, 2021 and extends the total number of eligible weeks from 50 to 79.
Part 3 – Department of Labor Funding for Timely, Accurate, and Equitable Payment
Sec. 9032: Funding for Fraud Prevention, Equitable Access, and Timely Payment to Eligible Workers
- Appropriates an additional $2 billion, available until fully spent, to the Secretary of Labor to detect and prevent fraud and ensure the timely payment of unemployment benefits.
Part 4 – Other Provisions
Sec. 9042: Suspension of Tax on Portion of Unemployment Compensation
- For taxpayers whose gross income for “any taxable year beginning in 2020” is less than $150,000 and whose unemployment payments were less than $10,200, that income will not be taxable.
Subtitle F – Preserving Health Benefits for Workers
Sec. 9501: Preserving Health Benefits for Workers
- People who lose their employer paid health insurance due to being laid off or having their hours reduced can elect to have COBRA (a continuation of their health insurance) paid for by the government, which will provide tax credits to the employer who will pay the premiums. This applies between April 1, 2021 through September 30, 2021.
Subtitle G – Promoting Economic Security
Part 1 – 2021 Recovery Rebates to Individuals
Sec. 9601: 2021 Recovery Rebates to Individuals
- Provides $1,400 per person stimulus checks to people making less than $75,000 per year, with a phase out up to $100,000 per year. No checks are allowed to be issued after December 31, 2021. They check amounts will be determined based on either 2019 or 2020 tax filings, whatever the government has on file. Appropriates over $1.4 billion.
Part 2 – Child Tax Credit
Sec. 9611: Child Tax Credit Improvements for 2021
- For 2021, for taxpayers living in the United States will get a $3,000 payment for each child ages 6-18 and $3,600 for each child under the age of 6. The payments will be reduced for individuals who make more than $75,000 and couples who make more than $150,000. Payments will be made between July 1, 2021 and December 31, 2021.
Part 3 – Earned Income Tax Credit
Sec. 9621: Strengthening the Earned Income Tax Credit for Individuals with No Qualifying Children
- Doubles the refundable Earned Income Tax Credit for qualified taxpayers for 2021 who don’t have children, increasing the maximum credit from $538 to $1,500. To qualify, you have to live in the United States at least half the year and have investment income below $10,000. People who make more than $21,430 as a single person or $27,830 jointly are not eligible.
Part 4 – Dependent Care Assistance
Sec. 9631: Refundability and Enhancement of Child and Dependent Care Tax Credit
- For 2021, eligible taxpayers can get up to 50% of up to $8,000 in childcare costs (capped at $16,000 for multiple children under the age of 12) reimbursed via a refundable tax credit. The credit phases out for families with income higher than $400,000 per year.
Part 5 – Credits for Paid Sick and Family Leave
- Provides a 100% refundable tax credit for employers that provide paid sick leave, capped at $511 and 10 days per quarter. Provides a 100% refundable tax credit for employers who provide family leave, capped at $200 per day and $12,000 total.
Sec. 9642: Credit for Sick Leave For Certain Self-Employed Individuals
- Allows self employed individuals to receive a tax credit for sick day related to COVID-19 from April 1, 2021 through September 30, 2021, including getting tested, quarantining, illness, and getting the vaccine. The number of days is capped at 10 and its capped at $200 per day.
Sec. 9643: Credit For Family Leave For Certain Self-Employed Individuals
- Allows self employed individuals to receive a refundable tax credit for family leave for COVID-19 testing, illness, or vaccines. It’s capped at 60 days and $200 per day.
Part 6 – Employee Retention Credit
Sec. 9651: Extension of Employee Retention Credit
- Provides employers who had to partially or fully close during 2021 with a refundable tax credit up to 70% of the wages they pay to their employees capped at $10,000 per employee per quarter.
Part 7 – Premium Tax Credit
Sec. 9661: Improving Affordability by Expanding Premium Assistance for Consumers
- Increases the amount of money the government will pay towards the health insurance premium of low income individuals. People with incomes at or below 150% of the poverty level ($19,320 for individuals) can get coverage with no monthly premiums. Lifts the cap on the income level of individuals eligible for subsides, so now everyone is eligible and no one will pay more than 8.5% of their income towards health insurance premiums. This is only applicable for 2021 and 2022.
Part 8 – Miscellaneous Provisions
Sec. 9671: Repeal of Election to Allocate Interest, Etc. on Worldwide Basis
- Repeals a tax benefit for corporations that would have become effective in 2021.
Sec. 9672: Tax Treatment of Targeted EIDL Advances
COVID relief money provided via the Small Business Administration’s program for restaurants will not count as gross income for tax purposes.
Sec. 9673: Tax Treatment of Restaurant Revitalization Grants
- COVID relief money provided via the Small Business Administration’s program for small businesses, nonprofits, and venues will not count as gross income for tax purposes.
Sec. 9675: Modification of Treatment of Student Loan Forgiveness
- Student loan forgiveness amounts will not be included in gross income from 2021 through 2025.
Subtitle I – Child Care for Workers
Sec. 9801: Child Care Assistance
- Appropriates over $3.5 billion for grants to states and territories for child care assistance.
Subtitle J – Medicaid
Sec. 9811: Mandatory Coverage of COVID-19 Vaccines and Administration and Treatment Under Medicaid
- From March 11, 2021 until one year after the COVID emergency is declared over, Medicaid must pay for COVID testing, treatment, and vaccines free of out of pocket charges.
Subtitle K – Children’s Health Insurance Program
Sec. 9821: Mandatory Coverage of COVID-19 Vaccines and Administration and Treatment Under CHIP
- From March 11, 2021 until the first day of the quarter after the one year anniversary of the COVID emergency being declared over, the Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP) must cover COVID testing, treatment, and vaccines with no cost sharing requirements. The Federal government will pay 100% of the costs to the states.
Subtitle M – Coronavirus State and Local Fiscal Recovery Funds
Sec. 9901: Coronavirus State and Local Fiscal Recovery Funds
- Appropriates $219.8 billion, available through the end of 2024, for states, territories, and tribal governments to “mitigate the fiscal effects stemming from the public health emergency with respect to the Coronavirus Disease (COVID-19)”. The money can be spent on “assistance to households, small businesses, and nonprofits, or aid to impacted industries such as tourism, travel, and hospitality” and “premium pay (up to $13/hour, capped at $25,000) to eligible workers… performing such essential work” and “for the provision of government services to the extent of the reduction of revenue… due to the COVID-19 public health emergency” and “to make necessary investments in water, sewer, or broadband infrastructure.” The money can NOT be used to offset a reduction in revenue caused by a tax cut or to deposit into pension funds.
- Appropriates over $130 billion, available through the end of 2024 for metropolitan cities ($45.5 billion), nonentitlement units of local government ($19.5 billin), and counties ($65 billion) to “mitigate the fiscal effects stemming from the public health emergency with respect to the Coronavirus Disease (COVID-19)” for the same purposes with the same conditions placed upon the states (see above).
- Appropriates $10 billion, available until fully spent, for states, territories, and tribal governments to “carry out critical capital projects directly enabling work, education, and health monitoring, including remote options.” Each state will get at least $100 million.
- Appropriates $2 billion, available until September 30, 2023, for counties and tribal governments for “any governmental purpose other than a lobbying activity.”
Subtitle N – Other Provisions
Sec. 9911: Funding For Providers Relating to COVID-19
- Appropriates $8.5 billion, available until fully spent, for health care providers for “health care related expenses and lost revenues that are attributable to COVID-19. Health care providers must apply and can’t double dip for the same expenses that have already been reimbursed or are supposed to be reimbursed some other way (for example, via insurance.)
- The money can be used for expenses derived from new construction of temporary structures, leasing property, purchasing medical supplies, hiring new workers and their training, and others.
TITLE X – COMMITTEE ON FOREIGN RELATIONS
- Appropriates over $8.6 billion, available until September 30, 2022, for international health programs “to prevent, prepare for, and respond to coronavirus”. $3.75 billion will go to the State Department for “the prevention, treatment, and control of HIV/AIDS” in order to mitigate the impact on these programs from impacts of the coronavirus and support recovery from them. The vast majority of this money will be for “a United States contribution to the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria” $3.09 billion will go to USAID for COVID-19 relief that “shall include support for international disaster relief, rehabilitation, and reconstruction, for health activities, and to meet emergency food security needs.” $930 million will be for “activities to address economic and stabilization requirements resulting from” coronavirus. $905 million will go to USAID and “shall include a contribution to a multilateral vaccine development partnership to support epidemic preparedness.”
Sec. 10004: Humanitarian Response
- Appropriates $500 million, available until September 30, 2022, to carry out the Migration and Refugee Assistance Act, but the money can’t be used to resettle refugees in the United States.
Sec. 10005: Multilateral Assistance
- Appropriates $580 billion, available until September 30, 2022, which “shall include support for the priorities and objectives of the United Nations Global Humanitarian Response Plan to COVID-19 through voluntary contributions to international organization and programs administered by such organizations.”
TITLE XI – COMMITTEE ON INDIAN AFFAIRS
Sec. 11001: Indian Health Service
- Appropriates over $6 billion for the Indian Health Service for COVID-19 related expenses.
Sec. 11002: Bureau of Indian Affairs
- Appropriates $900 million for the Bureau of Indian Affairs for tribal housing improvements, welfare services and water deliveries.
Sec. 11003: Housing Assistance and Supportive Services Programs for Native Americans
- Appropriates $750 million for housing assistance for native American communities.
Sec. 11005: Bureau of Indian Education
- Appropriates $850 million for the Bureau of Indian Education, available until fully spent.
- Article: Monthly Child Tax Credit Payments Start July 15th. Here’s What You Need to Know, By Christine Hernandez, winnie, May 21, 2021
- Article: Applying for rental assistance isn’t easy. Here’s what you need to know, By Annie Nova, CNBC, May 20, 2021
- Article: Facing Hurricane and Wildfire Seasons, FEMA Is Already Worn Out, By Christopher Flavelle and Zolan Kanno-Youngs, New York Times, May 20, 2021
- Article: As GOP-run states slash jobless aid, the Biden administration finds it has few options, By Tony Romm and Eli Rosenberg, The Washington Post, May 20, 2021
- Article: FEMA Launches Program to Compensate Funeral Expenses During Pandemic, By Stephanie Steele, NewsRadio 610 Kona, May 18, 2021
- Article: Judge Allows National Eviction Moratorium To Remain In Force While Feds Appeal Ruling Tossing It, By Nicholas Reimann, Forbes, May 18, 2021
- Article: How to get $9,000 in federal assistance for COVID-related funeral expenses, By James T. Mulder, AL, May 12, 2021
- Article: Struggling Renters Need More Federal Aid, By Alieza Durana and Carl Gershenson, The American Prospect, May 12, 2021
- Article: Lockheed-Backed Reps Lobby Against F-35 Spending Cuts, By David Moore, Sludge, Brick House, May 12, 2021
- Article: Loans Online – Black farmer loan forgiveness challenged, By Andrew Solender, Forbes, May 11, 2021
- Article: Senate Republicans Move To End $300 Unemployment Checks After Bad Jobs Report, By Andrew Solender, Forbes, May 11, 2021
- Article: Republicans Are Still Waging War on Workers, By Paul Krugman, The New York Times, May 10, 2021
- Article: U.S. Chamber of Commerce blames weak jobs report on enhanced unemployment benefit, kicks off lobbying effort, By Thomas Franck and Brian Schwartz, CNBC, May 7, 2021
- Article: National Eviction Moratorium Thrown Out by Federal Judge, By Andrew Ackerman and Brent Kendall, The Wall Street Journal, May 5, 2021
- Article: Who is eligible for Earned Income Tax Credit for childless workers?, By Greg Heilman, as, May 3, 2021
- Article: Sid Miller sues over farm aid program, saying it discriminates against whites, By Chuck Lindell, Austin American-Statesman, April 27, 2021
- Article: Texas Ag Commissioner Sid Miller sues, claims American Rescue Plan discriminates against white farmers, By Drew Knight, KVUE, April 27, 2021
- Article: WHAT TO KNOW ABOUT THE PAYCHECK PROTECTION PROGRAM BEFORE YOUR CHANCE TO GET IT RUNS OUT, By Jamie Smith Hopkins, The Center for Public Integrity, April 25, 2021
- Article: USDA Details Plan for Debt Payments to Socially Disadvantaged Farmers, By Chris Clayton, Progressive Farmer, DTN, Ag Policy Blog, April 15, 2021
- Article: HOMEOWNER ASSISTANCE FUND, U.S. DEPARTMENT OF THE TREASURY, April 14, 2021
- Article: New $3,000 child tax credit to start payments in July, IRS says, By Carmen Reinicke, CNBC, April 13, 2021
- Document: FAQS ABOUT COBRA PREMIUM ASSISTANCE UNDER THE AMERICAN RESCUE PLAN ACT OF 2021, Department of Labor, April 7, 2021
- Article: Exclusive: Nearly 7 million uninsured Americans qualify for free health insurance, By Dylan Scott, Vox, April 1, 2021
- Article: This Fast Food Giant Bragged About Killing $15 Minimum Wage, By David Sirota, Andrew Perez and Walker Bragman, Newsweek, March 27, 2021
- Document: Pension Provisions in the American Rescue Plan of 2021, U.S. Congressional Research Service, March 18, 2021
- Article: Congress Repeals Worldwide Interest Expense Allocation, By Amanda Pedvin Varma, Lauren Azebu, Steptoe, March 17, 2021
- Article: House Democrat Jared Golden Defends Voting Against ‘Wasteful’ $1.9T Relief Bill, By Benjamin Fearnow, Newsweek, February 27, 2021
- Article: FEMA Supporting Vaccination Centers Nationwide, FEMA, February 26, 2021
- Article: Veterans Community Care Program: Improvements Needed to Help Ensure Timely Access to Care, U.S. Government Accountability Office, September 28, 2020
- Article: How a 1960s communist exposed the funeral industry’s greed, By Matt Reimann, Timeline, July 11, 2016
- Article: The F-35 Is About to Get A Lot Cheaper. Sort Of., By Kyle Mizokami, Popular Mechanics, July 11, 2016
- Poll @JenBriney Twitter
- Allocation for States
- Allocation for Metropolitan Cities
- Socially Disadvantaged Farmers and Ranchers, U.S. Department of Agriculture
- Child Care & Development Block Grant (CCDBG), First Five Years Fund
- The American Rescue Plan, The White House
- Federal Poverty Level (FPL), Healthcare.gov
- New, lower costs on health insurance! Enroll now, Healthcare.gov
- US Chamber of Commerce, OpenSecrets.org
- Lobbyist Profile: Robert L Livingston, OpenSecrets.org
- Lobbyist Profile: Michael Mukasey, OpenSecrets.org
- Client Profile: US Chamber of Commerce, OpenSecrets.org
- Industry Profile: Food & Beverage, OpenSecrets.org
Sound Clip Sources
McConnell: I hope EVERY REPUBLICAN votes against American Rescue Plan, Forbes, YouTube, March 3, 2021
Rep. Kurt Schrader explains his vote against $1.9T coronavirus relief bill, KGW, March 1, 2021
“A Payoff For Pelosi”: Kevin McCarthy Slams Spending Items In $1.9 Trillion American Rescue Plan, Forbes, YouTube, May 1, 2021
Design by Only Child Imaginations
Music Presented in This Episode
Intro & Exit: Tired of Being Lied To by David Ippolito (found on Music Alley by mevio)