Second stimulus check: can you get $1,200, $600 or nothing? – Community News
Stimulus Check

Second stimulus check: can you get $1,200, $600 or nothing?

Congress leaders on Sunday reached a deal on a $900 billion COVID-19 economic aid package that includes: Instant payments of $600 in Americans and $300 in increased unemployment over the next 10 weeks, said House Speaker Nancy Speaker and Senate Leader Chuck Schumer.

The $600 checks only go to individuals making less than $75,000 a year or couples making less than $150,000. Similar to the CARES Act, individuals earning between $75,000 and $100,000 will gradually receive smaller payments, while individuals earning $100,000 or more will not receive stimulus checks.

Dependent kids get $600 instead of $500 this time.

The deal was based on a bipartisan $908 billion proposal, which initially omitted the so-called stimulus measures, focusing instead on providing an additional $300 in weekly unemployment benefits to unemployed workers. But a last-minute addition to the package enabled another round of payments — even though the $600 checks represent half of the $1,200 payments paid out to about 160 million Americans under the $2 trillion Coronavirus Aid, Relief. and Economic Security, of CARES, Act This Spring.

Some people said the $600 payments would be far too low, while former Labor Secretary Robert Reich wrote on Twitter that the package comes at a time when the number of COVID-19 infections and deaths is much higher than in the spring.

President Trump indicated on Tuesday evening that he would not sign the help package. He tweeted a video urging Congress to increase stimulus controls.

“I’m asking Congress to change this bill and raise the ridiculously low $600 to $2,000, or $4,000 for a couple,” Trump said in the recorded message.

Some senators, including Bernie Sanders of Vermont, had insisted that any new relief bill include another round of checks worth $1,200 for low- and middle-income Americans. Some economists shared some of Sanders’ concerns, noting that while the $900 billion package was better than nothing, it fell short of the funding needed to empower families and the economy.

More money may be needed after President-elect Joe Biden is inaugurated in January, Oxford Economics’s Gregory Daco noted on Dec. 21.

“The reality of an alarming health situation, a weakening labor market and dwindling demand when Biden takes office next month will prompt further fiscal stimulus,” he noted.

Punting on state and local aid

The latest deal is based on a $908 billion proposal from a bipartisan coalition of senators. But because that package included $160 billion in wrestling aid, state and local governments, which many Republicans objected to, as well as a corporate liability shield, which many Democrats opposed, the group split the proposal into two bills — essentially dividing the controversial issues into a smaller, separate package that can be debated at another time.

According to analysts Raymond James, the key to finding support for a new round of stimulus payments not to include $160 billion in funding for state and local governments. The $600 per person checks cost about $166 billion, according to the summary released by lawmakers.

Unemployed Benefits: $300 per week

The $900 billion measure will help millions of unemployed workers by adding 11 weeks to unemployment programs that now expire at the end of December. The Pandemic Unemployment Compensation (PUC), which had provided $600 per week to unemployed workers until it expired in July, will be extended with weekly benefits of $300.

The plan also extends a federal moratorium on eviction by an additional month, until the end of January.

But some experts said the measure may not go far enough to persuade unemployed workers until vaccines are widely available, which is likely to happen in mid-2021.

Congress reaches deal on economic aid for COVID…


“This short-lived and limited aid means that the stimulus bill will not support unemployed workers to a point closer to when the vaccine can be rolled out and people can return to their blinded occupations,” said Andrew Stettner, an unemployment expert with the left. Century Foundation, said in an email statement on Dec. 21.

In late November, more consumers said they were feeling the financial impact of the COVID-19 crisis, reaching nearly 6 in 10 people and representing the second consecutive monthly increase in hardship, according to a study by TransUnion. Job growth in the US too strongly delayed in November, raising concerns that the economic recovery is losing momentum.

“Ticking time bomb”

Some consumers, meanwhile, say they need much more than another $600 one-time payment to survive until the coronavirus vaccine is more widely available next year.

“U.S [COVID-19] numbers are greater than ever and the magnitude of this pandemic is almost limitless, but the help is not,” restaurant owner Stephanie Bonin told CBS MoneyWatch before the deal was reached. She has petitioned calling on Congress to giving people $2,000 a month, which has received nearly 2 million signatures.

She added, “Nothing is enough — be it $600, or a $1,200 one-time check — nothing is enough to meet the need.”

Meanwhile, millions of American families struggle to pay their bills and must be fired remain historically high. Of the consumers affected by the pandemic, about 8 in 10 are concerned about their ability to pay their bills – according to the TransUnion survey, half say they are concerned about paying their rent or mortgage.

Many unemployed workers are already struggling after additional unemployment benefits were cut from $600 a week to zero in August, noted Stettner of the Century Foundation.

“The savings of unemployed workers have since been largely or completely used up, and the limited aid in this package probably won’t be enough to rebuild them,” Stettner said. “Congress has given itself little choice but to immediately begin work on the next economic stimulus package once President-elect Biden takes office.”