Kaptur Applauds Passage of Coronavirus Stimulus Package and the Emergency Relief it Sends to Ohio
Washington, D.C. – Today, Congresswoman Marcy Kaptur (D-OH), Chair of the House Appropriations Subcommittee on Energy and Water Development, released the following statement in response to the passage of historic families and workers-first legislation, which will now go to the President’s desk for his signature.
“At this historic moment for our beloved nation, we come together to pass the largest federal boost to our economy in modern history,” said Rep. Kaptur. “This package is “For Our People.” It will save lives and our economy.”
“Let me begin with a heartfelt thank you to our first responders, medical workers, grocery store workers, field hands and migrant workers, municipal employees, drug store and pharmacy employees, food bank volunteers, truck drivers and delivery workers, and the US Army Corps of Engineers, National Guard personnel, and non-profit Samaritans and volunteers of every persuasion helping across America. Each of your tireless efforts and dedication make this nation stronger.
“Our country is under attack by an invisible foe. We have not experienced a threat of this magnitude since Pearl Harbor when our nation found itself quite ill-prepared to meet foreign foes. Today, we vote on a $2.3 trillion response package that recognizes the medical and economic horrors confronting the American people. This legislation provides assurance and support to those who need healing and a bridge toward a more secure future.
“To America’s medical frontline, our families, workers, seniors, and small businesses, we have heard your pleas for rescue. Today we provide a lifeline.
“Because of Democratic efforts, huge investments in hospitals, health systems and state and local government will receive the resources they desperately need to meet this pandemic.
“Democratic efforts won significant increases in unemployment insurance benefits to match average paychecks of laid-off or furloughed workers, and direct cash payments to millions.
“Democratic pressure led to significant expansion of fast relief for small businesses and made rent, mortgages, and utility costs eligible for SBA loan forgiveness.
“Because of Democratic leadership, students will have billions for emergency education funding and student loans will not bear income tax on repayment assistance provided by an employer.
“And most importantly, spending of the taxpayer dollars will be held accountable with oversight, preventing secret bailouts to the wealthiest friends of this Administration.
This legislation is bold. But is not an immediate cure all. More action is required soon.
“This global pandemic exposed the reality the Heartland of our nation has known for decades. We cannot rely on foreign manufacturing for vital, daily essentials, surely medical supplies. It is overtime for this Administration to bring the full force of the Defense Production Act online, but more importantly to then partner with Congress to rebuild America’s security through domestic manufacturing.
“Too many Americans have already lost their lives in this crisis because of missed warnings, ignored alarms, and disregard for our industrial base and vital medical supply lines. With Congress next turning to a legislative solution to provide robust economic recovery, we cannot ignore the elephant in the room.
“We must do everything to rebuild our strategic medical stockpile through American manufacturing ingenuity. American lives are at stake now and in the future. We make America great again by healing her people and rebuilding her domestic medical production! I fully support today’s bipartisan response package.”
Here are just a few of the numerous initiatives in this historic piece of legislation that will benefit the residents of Ohio:
- A $150 Billion State and Local Coronavirus Relief Fund: Creates a $150 billion State and Local Coronavirus Relief Fund to provide states and localities additional resources to cope with the coronavirus pandemic. It is estimated that our state of Ohio will receive approximately $4.53 billion in desperately needed funds to benefit our state’s residents.
- $260 Billion in Dramatically Expanded Unemployment Benefits: Includes numerous provisions to improve unemployment benefits including providing an additional $600 per week for the next four months, providing an additional 13 weeks of federally funded benefits, and expanding eligibility to include workers in the gig economy and self-employed workers.
- Immediate Direct Cash Payments to Lower and Middle-Income Americans: Provides for immediate, direct cash payments to lower-and middle-income Americans of $1,200 for each adult and $500 for each child, beginning to phase out at an annual income of $75,000 for an individual and $150,000 for a household. These payments will provide individuals with the cash they need right now to survive with much of the economy currently shut down.
- More Than $375 Billion in Small Business Relief: Provides more than $375 billion in small business relief, including $349 billion for forgivable loans to small businesses to pay their employees and keep them on the payroll; $17 billion for debt relief for current and new SBA borrowers; and $10 billion in immediate disaster grants.
- Approximately $200 Billion for Our Hospitals, Health Care Workers, and Health Research: Provides an investment of about $200 billion in our hospitals, health systems, and health research, including expanding funding for the personal protective equipment desperately needed by our health care workers, including ventilators, n95 masks, gowns, gloves, etc.
- More Than $100 Billion in Additional Emergency Appropriations, Including the Following:
- Transit Agencies: Provides $25 billion to transit agencies, which have all seen a drastic drop in revenues as social distancing has been implemented. This funding is to be used to protect the jobs of the employees of the transit agencies, funding their paychecks during this public health emergency. Ohio will receive $474,118,324 under this program.
- HUD Emergency Solution Grants: Provides $2 billion for HUD Emergency Solution Grants to states that will be distributed by formula. These grants are designed to address the impact of the coronavirus among individuals and families who are homeless or at risk of homelessness, and to support additional homeless assistance, prevention, and eviction prevention assistance. Of this $2 billion, Ohio will receive $91,234,014. In addition, the bill provides an additional $2 billion for these grants that will be allocated by HUD to the most hard-pressed areas.
- Child Care and Development Block Grant: Supports childcare and early education by providing $3.5 billion for the Child Care and Development Block Grant. Ohio will receive $116,574,845 under this emergency appropriation.
- Low-Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP): Provides $900 million to help low-income families pay their heating and cooling bills. Ohio will receive $12,605,000 for this purpose during this public health emergency.
- Byrne-Justice Assistance Grant Program: Provides $850 million for this program, giving additional support to state and local law enforcement agencies, thereby allowing them, for example, to obtain the personal protective equipment and other medical items they may need during this public health emergency. Our state will receive $25,244,475 under this appropriation.
- CDC Coronavirus State, Local and Tribal Grants Minimum Awards: Provides about $750 million in CDC State, Local, and . Tribal Grants Minimum Awards to help agencies cope with the public health emergency. The minimum award for our state is $17,357,000. In addition, states can apply for additional funds above their minimum award, based on their needs.
- Election Assistance: Provides $400 million for Election Assistance Grants for states to help prepare for the 2020 elections. Coronavirus is already resulting in the postponement of some primaries and this funding can help states make voting safer for individuals. Funding can be used, for example, to increase the ability to vote by mail, expand early voting, and expand online registration. Ohio will receive $12,800,802 for these purposes.