Today, the Problem Solvers Caucus released an outline of their $908 billion coronavirus relief package. Though no text language has been released, this is a first look at what they look to outline section by section in the coronavirus relief package. The $908 billion plan does not include direct stimulus checks to Americans, which President Donald Trump supports.
State, Local and Tribal Governments & Liability
State & local aid and liability protections are two of the biggest sticking points among Democrats and Republicans for any COVID relief deal. Negotiators have an agreement in principle on providing $160 billion for state and local funding and an agreement in principle on liability "as the basis for good faith negotiations."
Paycheck Protection Program & Small Business
- $300 billion to Small Business Administration, which would provide funding so that the hardest-hit small businesses could receive a second forgivable Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) loan.
CDFI / MDI Community Lenders
- $12 billion in targeted emergency investments to help low-income and minority communities withstand the economic impact of the COVID-19 pandemic and respond to the unprecedented economic downturn
- $2 billion in emergency COVID-19 funding to the CDFI fund for emergency COVID relief and relief to minority communities, and for minority owned lenders disproportionately impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic and resulting economic stress
- $10 billion in emergency capital injections to eligible CDFIs and MDIs to support immediate economic relief in low-income and minority communities struggling to respond to the COVID-19 pandemic
Vaccine Development & Distribution
- $3.42B in direct grants for states, local, territories, and tribes
- Allows states to use funds for tracking systems and data modernization
- Directs the Secretary to take into account geographical areas with high percentage of cross jurisdictional workers
- $2.58B for CDC vaccine distribution and infrastructure
- $129 million for tribes, tribal organizations, urban Indian health organizations, or health service providers to tribes
- Contingency/Discretionary fund to be utilized by Secretary to send additional aid to states to assist with vaccine distribution
- Allows states to use USPS registry to help track vaccine distribution
Testing and Tracing
- $7 billion in direct grants for states, territories, and tribes.
- $3.5 billion to states, territories, and tribes
- $2.32 billion to COVID-19 hot spots
- $825 million to be used at the Secretary’s discretion for states
- Includes authorization for grants to Federally Qualified Health Centers, school-based health clinics, schools, academic medical centers, colleges and universities, research labs, veterinary labs, nonprofits, Indian tribes, local governments, and other entities
- $350 million to tribes, tribal organizations, urban Indian health organizations, or health service providers to tribes
- $700 million to the Secretary for additional research, procurement and medical supply needs, including:
- To make purchases of personal protective equipment and other medical supplies as needed to address the COVID-19 pandemic
- Fund research at the National Institutes of Health, including studying Post-Acute-Covid-19 syndrome and other long-term health outcomes in COVID-19 survivors
- Develop, purchase, distribute and otherwise ensure the timely delivery of a safe and effective COVID-19 vaccine to the American public
- Authorizes states, tribes and territories to enter into interstate compacts or agreements, for the purposes of procuring COVID-19 tests and supplies for such tests
- Extends telehealth flexibility through December 31, 2021
Agricultural Assistance and Fisheries
- $13 billion to provide funding to address COVID-19 related impacts on farmers, ranchers, growers, etc., and rural communities
- Includes $600 million for fishery disaster relief, including funding for tribal and Great Lakes fisheries
- USDA Rural Development funding for water and wastewater programs
Trump-backed Coronavirus Relief Proposal
On Tuesday, Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin offered Pelosi a $916 billion package. Unlike the bipartisan proposal, Mnuchin’s plan puts forth a $600 direct payment for individuals and $1,200 for couples and would provide $160 billion for state and local aid. It also includes liability protections for businesses as well as money for the popular Paycheck Protection Program.
In response to Mnuchin’s plan, Pelosi and Schumer stated that its provisions on unemployment were inadequate and warned that the White House “proposal must not be allowed to obstruct the bipartisan Congressional talks that are underway.”
Manchin told reporters today that the Trump administration’s proposal “didn’t make any sense.” However, he thanked the White House “for at least recognizing that the $900 billion is a number that’s doable, feasible and reasonable.”