Congressman Richard Neal discusses ‘American Rescue Plan’ before House votes on relief package

Massachusetts

SPRINGFIELD, Mass. (WWLP/AP) – Most Americans can expect more money in their bank accounts soon, after the Senate passed a new coronavirus relief package over the weekend.

The final vote was 50-49 along party lines, with every Republican voting “no.” However, before it can be signed by President Biden, the legislation will have to be passed again by the House because the Senate made changes to its version.

After more than 25 hours of debate and votes, Senate Democrats passed a $1.9 trillion COVID-19 relief bill over the weekend, aimed at helping lower-income Americans, small businesses and schools. The bill will also boost front-line pandemic work, vaccines, and testing.

The new COVID-19 relief bill passed on a party-line vote and will now head back over to the House, which will have to reconcile several key changes before it heads to President Joe Biden’s desk just days before unemployment benefits expire for millions of Americans.

“I think that aid to cities and towns is helping them get through the job losses that have totaled more than one million Americans nationwide,” said Neal.

Republicans though like Sen. John Barrasso of Wyoming say stimulus checks should only go to those who need it the most, “I think this is a mistake, what’s happening in the bill that just passed the Senate.”

So what can most Americans expect with this new bill?

  • $1,400 stimulus checks capped at individuals making less than $80,000 per year and households earning $160,000
  • $300 per week jobless benefits through September
  • $130 billion for schools
  • $34 billion to expand Obamacare subsidies
  • $14 billion for vaccine distribution

The House is expected to pass the COVID-19 relief deal this week and stimulus checks are expected to start coming out by the end of the month.

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