On Saturday, March 6th, 2021, the US Senate approved President Biden’s American Rescue Plan, a $1.9 trillion Covid-19 relief package. This bill will be going through the House of Representatives this week in efforts to get President Biden’s signature before key unemployment programs expire on Sunday, March 14th.
This bill includes:
- A $300 weekly boost to unemployment benefits through September 6, 2021
- The distribution of $1,400 stimulus checks to individuals with an $80,000 or less yearly income or joint tax filers with a $160,000 or less yearly income beginning this month
- The allocation of funds towards Covid-19 testing and vaccine distribution
- The direction of funds to state, local, and tribal governments and schools
- The expansion of tax credits for children to $3,000 annually per child ages six to 17 and $3,600 per child under six
- The expansion of tax credits for low-income employees
- The expansion of rental payment and nutrition expense assistance
- The extension of health insurance subsidies
Unsurprisingly, this bill has faced a whirlwind of partisan controversy within the Senate, House, and media despite a 68% American public approval rating, a total of about 527,000 American Covid-19 deaths, and the highest unemployment rate since the Great Depression. The American Rescue Plan is being swiftly pushed through Congress so this highly-anticipated, final passage decision is expected by the end of the week.