New Stimulus Bill Proposal Includes Second $1,200 Check, Cuts Unemployment Benefits to $200

July 27, 2020

    As the country continues to grapple with the effects of coronavirus, many Americans are eagerly wondering what will be included in a second stimulus relief bill.

    On Monday, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell unveiled a newly proposed coronavirus relief package termed the HEALS Act — an acronym which stands for "Health, Economic, Assistance, Liability Protection, and Schools."

    “The American people need more help [and] they need it to be comprehensive and they need it to be carefully tailored to this crossroads,” McConnell said on the Senate floor on Monday.

    The $1 trillion bill comes days before the $600 weekly unemployment benefits passed under March’s CARES Act officially expire on July 31.

    Here's a look at some of the major items included in the new package, according to Fox Business.

    Another $1,200 stimulus check

    The new proposal includes a second direct payment of $1,200 to taxpayers.

    The income criteria for a second stimulus check will be $75,000, the same as that passed in the CARES Act, and not $40,000, the lower cap that McConnell has recently hinted.

    Reduced weekly unemployment benefits

    The plan also decreases weekly unemployment benefits to $200 a week, down from the current amount of $600.

    The reduction is meant to be a temporary stand-in as states implement a system that will pay jobless Americans 70% of their prior incomes, Iowa Sen. Chuck Grassley said on Monday.

    Other aid, including for schools, business and vaccine research

    Additionally, the unveiled plan includes $105 billion for schools and $16 billion in new money for testing.

    It also includes a more targeted round of small business loans through the Paycheck Protection Program, tax incentives for companies to bring their employees back to work, and liability protections for businesses, schools, hospitals and non-profits.

    The bill also includes the extension of a federal eviction moratorium.

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