The proposal presented yesterday by the president-elect consists of two phases. Although the most striking aspect of the economic plan announced by President-elect Joe Biden this Thursday is the $1,400 stimulus checks, the proposal includes several additional measures to alleviate the coronavirus crisis such as a $400 per week increase in unemployment through September.
The initiative, valued at about $1.9 billion, would consist of two parts or “steps”.
The first phase, called the “U.S. Rescue Plan,” emphasizes precisely “direct financial assistance and relief to Americans” through new direct transfers that would complement the second check of $600 minimum that the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) is beginning to send in conjunction with the Treasury Department in late December.
The second step under his administration, called the “Recovery Plan,” will be presented in February during a joint session of Congress and focuses on investments such as infrastructure and clean energy.
It’s not hard to see that we are in the midst of a once-in-generation economic crisis, with a once-in-generation health crisis,” Biden said in a speech to the nation last night.
“There is no time to lose, we have to act and act now,” argued the Democratic leader who will take office on January 20.
$1,400 and $400 weekly unemployment checks
One of the topics that has been ringing out for weeks is the third stimulus check for $1,400 to reach a minimum of $2,000 on top of the $600 approved under the Supplemental Appropriations for Coronavirus Response and Relief Act of 2021.
The expectation is that the distribution of a third payment, should legislation be passed in both the House and the Senate, will follow the same guidelines as the second payment still being processed by government authorities.
The current law provides that singles who earn $87,000 or less per year are eligible for the grant, while couples filing jointly must earn no more than $150,000.
Another part of the proposal is the $400 weekly unemployment incentive until September.
The approved extension under the Supplemental Appropriations Act is $300 per week through March.
Biden’s plan also provides for a $170 billion investment in schools and higher education institutions. The appropriation seeks to ensure that schools can safely reopen despite the pandemic.
Increase to the federal minimum wage to $15 per hour
In addition, the project plans to increase the federal minimum wage to $15 per hour and allocate $350 million in emergency funds for state and local governments, according to the Efe report. It would also extend paid leave for workers.
Moratorium on Evictions
The Democrat’s proposal would also establish a moratorium on evictions and foreclosures until September.