Earlier this week, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell announced the Republicans' proposal for the next coronavirus relief package. Included in it was a $1,200 stimulus check that goes to eligible Americans, plus $500 for every dependent, very similar to the first check that went out. The amount and eligibility requirements were discussed with Democrats and seemed to be agreed upon, however on Thursday, a new proposal for the stimulus check was announced, but not by Democrats.
Four Republican senators who disagree with the current proposal put forth a new one. Bill Cassidy (Louisiana), Steve Daines (Montana), Mitt Romney (Utah) and Marco Rubio (Florida) want to see the stimulus check be $1,000 instead of $1,200, but they want dependents to also get $1000 each. That means that a family of four would see $4,000 instead of $3,400.
With their proposal, the senators are hoping to help families. In a release, Cassidy explained, "Much of the burden of the pandemic has fallen on parents and children. This legislation prioritizes their needs by providing resources for school supplies, childcare, and other unexpected expenses." Meanwhile, Romney said, "As we consider additional relief measures, we should prioritize families by providing them with resources to help with the extra expenses they face as a result of COVID-19."
As for eligibility, those remain the same as McConnell's proposal, which means the check will go to anyone making less than $75,000, while those who earn more will get $1,200 minus 5% of the amount they make over $75K. Joint filers earning less than $150,000 get the full benefit and those who make more will have their check reduced by 5% of the amount over $150K they earn.
Whatever the stimulus check winds up looking like, there is no word on when it will go out. First, the checks, and much more in the package, have to be agreed upon by both Republicans and Democrats, and there are still a lot of sticking points, including unemployment benefits, state and local financial assistance, and liability protection for businesses, schools and hospitals. Hopefully they can come to an agreement quickly and pass a bill before August 7, when the Senate takes their summer recess. If they do, expect checks to go out about 13 business days after a package passes. However, if they can't agree on a bill before their recess, you might not see a check until October.
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