Source: United States House of Representatives – Congressman Malinowski (NJ-7)
December 21, 2020
(Washington, DC) Today, the House passed a bipartisan, bicameral $900 billion bill to address the continued effects of the coronavirus public health and economic crisis. The legislation will bring urgently needed relief to families and small businesses across New Jersey, and accelerate the distribution of safe vaccines across the country.
“Today’s COVID-19 relief bill is imperfect and insufficient, but it will help many New Jersey families get through the winter,” said Rep. Malinowski.“This bill will extend federal unemployment benefits, help people pay their rent and tuition, accelerate the distribution of safe vaccines, and will help businesses stay afloat with a second round of PPP loans. Unfortunately, the GOP Senate won their fight to defund police and fire departments, public works, parks, and other services by refusing to help state and local governments facing revenue shortfalls due to COVID-19. I am voting for this bill today because millions of Americans are in desperate need of help, but I will continue to fight for additional relief in the weeks to come.”
The House also passed a series of appropriations bills to fund the FY 2021 operations of the federal government. This legislation includes a key provision of Rep. Malinowski’s Providing Protective Equipment Act, which passed the House earlier this year. The provision requires the Secretary of Health and Human Services to send Congress a monthly public report on the precise level of supplies, including personal protective equipment, held in the Strategic National Stockpile so that Congress can ensure that there are adequate amounts to respond to any future pandemic.
Additionally, the relief package includes:
- $8.75 billion in urgently needed funds to accelerate the free and equitable distribution of safe vaccines to crush the virus;
- Over $284 billion for first and second forgivable Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) loans, expanded PPP eligibility, key modifications to PPP to serve the smallest businesses and struggling non-profits, and includes $15 billion in dedicated funding for live venues, independent movie theaters, and cultural institutions;
- A $300 per week Unemployment Insurance enhancement for Americans out of work;
- $25 billion in critically needed rental assistance for families struggling to stay in their homes and an extension of the eviction moratorium;
- $14 billion for transit systems nationwide, including NJ Transit, which have suffered drastic revenue drops since the start of the pandemic. Plus, an additional $1 billion for Amtrak;
- $13 billion in increased SNAP and child nutrition benefits to help relieve the COVID hunger crisis;
- A new round of direct payments worth up to $600 per adult and child;
- $82 billion in funding for colleges and schools and $10 billion for child care assistance to help get parents back to work and keep child care providers open; and
- An additional $3.36 billion for a total of $4 billion for GAVI, the international vaccine alliance, recognizing that we are not truly safe until the whole world is safe from the coronavirus