Lawmakers are moving closer to approving a third round of stimulus checks. A full vote is expected Friday on Biden’s proposed $ 1.9 million virus relief bill.
WASHINGTON – Before being sworn in, President Joe Biden announced a $ 1.9 trillion coronavirus plan that included $ 1,400 stimulus checks to struggling Americans. The “American rescue plan” would provide further help to stabilize the economy as the public health effort takes over the pandemic. The bill would also include the pumping of billions of dollars in aid from state and local governments as well as additional aid to businesses affected by the pandemic.
So now that the United States Presidency, House and Senate are controlled by Democrats, when might Americans start getting a third Economic impact payment?
When are they voting on the third stimulus check?
The House of Representatives passed the US bailout on Saturday morning by a vote of 219-212, hours after going through the House Rules Committee. The bill will now be sent to the Senate for consideration, but the deadline for adoption remains in question.
The legislation provides for a third stimulus check that amounts to $ 1,400 for a single taxpayer, or $ 2,800 for a married couple filing jointly, plus $ 1,400 per dependent. People earning up to $ 75,000 would get the full amount, as would married couples earning up to $ 150,000.
The size of the check would decrease for those earning a little more with a firm limit of $ 100,000 for individuals and $ 200,000 for married couples.
Some Republicans want to reduce the amount of the rebate as well as the pool of eligible Americans, but Biden insisted on checks for $ 1,400, saying “that’s what the American people promised.” The new round of checks will cost the government approximately $ 422 billion.
When will the third stimulus check be sent?
Democrats and President Joe Biden want the COVID-19 relief plan to be approved by March 14. This is when Supplemental Unemployment Assistance and other pandemic assistance expires.
However, there could still be changes before the bill is passed by the Senate. The Senate parliamentarian, who advises the Senate on its rules and procedures but has no formal authority, ruled Thursday that a provision to gradually increase the federal minimum wage to $ 15 an hour should be removed. The Senate, as in the past, has the power to change the rules to allow for its inclusion.
If the Senate makes any changes to the bill, then it will have to return to the House for approval.
During the first round of stimulus checks in April 2020, it took about two weeks for the federal government to start distributing the money. It took about a week for the second round of checks, valued at $ 600, in early January.
If the IRS is able to meet previous deadlines, Americans could start receiving stimulus checks from late March through early April. For example, if the stimulus package is enacted before March 14, based on previous back-up plans, the first direct deposits could come out the week of March 22.
Another possible complicating factor is that this round of stimulus checks will likely be initiated while the IRS processes tax returns.
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Why checks for $ 1,400 and not $ 2,000?
Biden’s plan called for checks of $ 1,400 for most Americans, which, in addition to the $ 600 provided in the latest COVID-19 bill, would bring the total to the $ 2,000 requested by Biden.
But Biden initially didn’t make that differentiation. Biden said on January 4 during a campaign For Democrats Jon Ossoff and Raphael Warnock ahead of the second round of Georgian Senate elections, “Their election will end Washington’s block on this $ 2,000 stimulus check. This money will come out immediately.”
What else is included in Biden’s $ 1.9 trillion package?
Under Biden’s multi-pronged strategy, around $ 400 billion would go directly to tackling the pandemic, while the rest would focus on economic relief and aid to states and communities.
About $ 20 billion would be allocated to a more disciplined focus on immunization, in addition to the roughly $ 8 billion already approved by Congress. Biden called for setting up mass vaccination centers and sending mobile units to hard-to-reach areas.
Click here to see the full breakdown of where the funds will be allocated.
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What about a minimum wage of $ 15 an hour?
Whether or not to maintain a minimum wage increase of $ 15 an hour in the COVID-19 relief bill rests with one person in the Senate: the parliamentarian.
Elizabeth MacDonough, an English literature major and the Senate’s first female parliamentarian, decided Thursday to exclude the minimum wage hike from the $ 1.9 billion coronavirus bill.
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The conclusion of MacDonough, the chamber’s non-partisan arbiter of its rules, means Democrats face an extremely difficult battle to raise the minimum wage this year due to strong Republican opposition. Their proposal would gradually increase the federal minimum to $ 15 an hour by 2025, well above the floor of $ 7.25 in place since 2009.
President Joe Biden was “disappointed” with the outcome but respected the parliamentarian’s decision, White House press secretary Jen Psaki said. The Senate has a long tradition of obeying the decisions of the parliamentarian with few exceptions, a history that is revered by traditionalists like Biden, a 36-year Senate veteran.
“He will work with leaders in Congress to determine the best way forward because no one in this country should be working full time and living in poverty,” Psaki said.
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Democrats are pushing the massive coronavirus relief measure to Congress under special rules that will allow them to avoid Senate obstruction by Republicans, a tactic Democrats would need 60 unattainable votes to win.
But these same Senate rules prohibit provisions that have only an “ancillary” impact on the federal budget, because they are primarily motivated by other political objectives. MacDonough said the minimum wage provision failed that test, according to assistants who described his decision on condition of anonymity because it had not been released.
MacDonough’s decision forces Democrats to make politically painful choices about what to do next on minimum wage, which has long caused internal divisions within the party.
Where is my first or second dunning check? What if I haven’t received a stimulus check or the correct amount?
While stimulus check payments of $ 600 can still be mailed, the IRS said last week that it issued them all.
So if Americans have not received payment, or if they have not received their full amount, they may be entitled to claim a Recovery rebate credit when they file a 2020 tax return.
Credit eligibility will be based on information from tax year 2020, while economic impact payments have been based on tax information from 2019 (or in some cases 2018).
As a reminder, the first installment was worth up to $ 1,200 per eligible adult and $ 500 per dependent; the second was worth up to $ 600 for each eligible member of the household. Those who received an economic impact payment greater than what was due to them will not be penalized.
The IRS began accepting 2020 tax returns on February 12.