Kaine and Warner welcome adoption of US bailout
WASHINGTON, DC – US Senator Tim Kaine applauded the Senate’s passage of the US bailout, a $ 1.9 trillion COVID-19 relief bill that includes many critical victories for Virginia. The bill will now return to the House of Representatives [for a separate vote].
“Because of this bill millions of Virginians will receive a stimulus check, unemployment benefits will last all summer and 85,000 of the Commonwealth’s children will be lifted out of poverty,” he added. Kaine said. “The past year has been bleak, but with this much-needed relief and the acceleration of vaccinations, a brighter, healthier and more prosperous America is on the horizon.”
US Senator Mark R. Warner (D-VA) released the following statement after voting for the US bailout, legislation aimed at providing emergency relief to the American people and defeating the COVID-19 pandemic: “This legislation will help our country defeat COVID-19 and get back to normalcy. It includes resources desperately needed to bring vaccines to the gun; help schools reopen safely; and provide vital lifelines to communities hardest hit by this virus.
“I will be the first to admit that this bill is not perfect. I am glad that, while the Senate reviewed this legislation, we made important changes to target aid where it is most needed, as millions of Americans remain out of work, state and local governments continue. to lay off workers and small businesses are struggling to keep their doors open.
“I’m especially proud to have been able to work with President Biden and my colleagues to add funds to expand high-speed internet access, which is a necessity, not a luxury, during COVID-19. The $ 17 billion we have raised to help develop broadband infrastructure and affordability is the largest federal investment ever of its kind and will be a significant boost to our economy as we work. to rebuild and recover from COVID-19. “
The provisions of the US bailout include:
Aid for the unemployed: The bill extends federal unemployment benefits until September, allowing Virginians without work due to the pandemic to pay their bills while the economy continues to recover and jobs are not widely available.
Help for households in difficulty: The bill increases the amount of direct payments made in December by an additional $ 1,400 per person, bringing the total to $ 2,000 per person.
Mental health of health care providers: The bill includes $ 80 million to train health professionals and public safety officers in strategies to reduce and address suicide, burnout, and mental and behavioral health problems; $ 20 million for the CDC to conduct an education and awareness campaign to encourage healthcare professionals and first responders to seek support and treatment for their own behavioral health issues, identify and respond to factors of risk in themselves and in others, and to fight against stigma; and $ 40 million in grants for health care providers to establish or expand programs to promote mental and behavioral health among their health professionals.
Support the modernization of public health data: The bill provides $ 500 million to support and strengthen our systems for monitoring and analyzing public health data at CDC.
Help with vaccine distribution and virus tracing: The bill provides $ 20 billion to improve vaccine distribution, $ 10 billion for the Defense Production Act for the purchase of essential medical equipment and $ 50 billion for virus testing, sequencing genomics to detect new variants, contract tracing and additional PPE.
Funding to reopen schools safely: In addition to state and local relief, the bill provides $ 125.8 billion for K-12 schools to safely reopen, including $ 3 billion to support students with disabilities and $ 800 million dollars to support homeless children and youth. The funds could be used to purchase PPE, reduce class sizes, repair ventilation systems, hire support staff, and implement other public health measures recommended by the CDC. School districts could also use funds to help students who have fallen behind catch up and get back on track. The bill also provides $ 40 billion to help higher education institutions.
Childcare: The bill invests $ 39 billion in child care providers through the Child Care Development Block Grant Program. These funds can be used by child care providers for operating expenses, PPE, staff costs, and financial assistance to families in difficulty to cover school fees.
Help restaurants and other small businesses: In addition to providing an additional $ 7.25 billion to expand access to the Paycheck Protection Program (P3) for nonprofits and other organizations, the bill establishes a revitalization fund. $ 25 billion restaurants to provide restaurant subsidies. The bill also adds $ 15 billion to the Targeted Economic Disaster Loan Advance (EIDL) program to help hardest-hit small businesses.
Broadband: In addition to the opportunities offered by aid to support state, local and tribal governments, $ 7 billion is provided to the Federal Communications Commission to manage the Emergency Connectivity Fund. This fund will support broadband access for students by providing telecommunications services to schools and libraries.