Federal Unemployment Set To Expire, As Senate GOP Leaders Will Unveil Their Stimulus Plan On Monday

AP

The Republican version of a new pandemic economic stimulus package should arrive next week, reports indicate, as Senate GOP leaders and the White House claim to have reached agreement on what they will propose on Monday.

The $600 federal unemployment benefit ends tomorrow, leaving the millions of unemployed people relying on their state benefits, even as a surge in new coronavirus cases has shuttered many businesses that reopened and kept others closed since March.

Democrats passed their own relief package in the House in May. Now, the two sides will attempt the difficult task of reaching a compromise on what will be in the final version of the bill.

The Republican version of this second stimulus is reportedly offering federal unemployment based on approximately 70 percent of wage replacement, according to Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin. Previous reports indicate that means benefits of between $200-$400, while Democrats are arguing for the $600 level to be maintained.
How long the federal extension will be in effect isn’t known and will likely be a sticking point. But Senate Majority Leader Mitch McDonnell described it earlier this week as “temporary.” It is likely to last at least through December, accordoing to reports.
Also in the new plan is another round of stimulus checks. McConnell again suggested that would be part of the deal, but would only cover those making $40,000 a year or less, with the hospitality industry service workers particularly in mind. The first stimulus threshhold for a full $1200 check to individuals was $75,000.
The proposal also includes coronavirus lawsuit protections, funds for testing, money to help schools restart for on-campus attendance, and a second round of Paycheck Protection Program loans for small businesses that were particularly hard-hit by the pandemic.
If the haggling extends the lack of federal money for several weeks, many unemployed people may suffer. Moratoriums on rent payments are expiring, and mortgages are in arrears for many without work. The federal funds made up for that, but conservatives argue that the large injection has stopped some from seeking what work is out there.
Democrats complained about the Republican plan to wait until Monday. In a joint statement Friday, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer said, “We had expected to be working throughout this weekend to find common ground on the next COVID response package. It is simply unacceptable that Republicans have had this entire time to reach consensus among themselves and continue to flail,” they said. “Time is of the essence and lives are being lost.”

 

This article was printed from https://deadline.com/2020/07/federal-unemployment-set-to-expire-as-senate-gop-leaders-will-unveil-their-stimulus-plan-on-monday-1202994958/