With 130 million stimulus checks already sent out, and 20 million still waiting, could there be a second round of relief payments to follow? In late March, the White House and Congress agreed to a $2 trillion stimulus package that not only involved aid to several businesses around the country, but also provided much needed relief checks to eligible Americans. Checks in the amount of $1,200 or $2,400, with an additional $500 per child for those with dependents, were sent out to families across the board. However, considering the economic crisis due to the coronavirus pandemic, law makers are finding that isn't enough.
"The CARES Act gave Americans an important one-time payment, but it's clear that wasn't nearly enough to meet the needs of this historic crisis," Kamala Harris (D-CA) said according to Yahoo. "Bills will continue to come in every single month during the pandemic and so should help from the government." A Monthly Economic Crisis Support Act was introduced on Friday, May 8, by Harris, Sens. Bernie Sanders and Ed Markey, which would provide a monthly $2,000 check to each person who makes an annual income below $120,000 throughout the crisis and the three months following.
The plan would also keep debt collectors from seizing rebate payments, also ensuring homeless people and foster children payments as well. "Providing recurring monthly payments is the most direct and efficient mechanism for delivering economic relief to those most vulnerable in this crisis, particularly low-income families, immigrant communities, and our gig and service workers," Markey said. While a price has not been put on paper just yet, it could likely cost about $300 billion just for the first round alone.
The House is anticipated on taking the first steps in writing the next coronavirus relief bill with a draft coming as early as next week. "The economic impact of this virus is unprecedented for our country," Rep. Tim Ryan said after proposing the Emergency Money for the People Act alongside Rep. Ro Khanna. "As millions of Americans file for unemployment week over week, we have to work quickly to patch the dam — and that means putting cash in the hands of hard-working families. Many Ohioans are just receiving — or about to receive — the first cash payment we passed in the CARES Act. Now it's time for Congress to get to work on the next step to provide relief for those who have been hardest hit in this pandemic."