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Latest COVID-19 Stimulus Package Signed into Law

(3/27/2020)  – The coronavirus pandemic has far-reaching consequences for the state of New York. Thank you to the leadership of New York’s Congressional Delegation, the President has signed into the law the third stimulus packaged to address the coronavirus crisis, support our local communities, and most importantly put our workers first. Please find a brief summary of the third stimulus packaged below provided by the office of Senate Democratic Leader Chuck Schumer.

 First, this relief package includes a dramatic expansion and reform of the unemployment insurance program. The extended and expanded UI program in this agreement increases the maximum unemployment benefit amount by $600 per week above one’s base unemployment compensation benefit and ensures that workers who are laid-off or out of work, on average, will receive their full pay for four months, a full quarter. It ensures that all workers are protected whether they work for businesses small, medium or large, along with self-employed and workers in the gig economy, who might travel from Long Island or Upstate to work in the city each day. 

The $260 billion dollar plan will deliver at least $15 billion directly to New York. Payments of $1,200 for individuals and $2,400 for couples accounts for another $15.5B to New York.

 The second major component is a Marshall Plan for hospitals and other medical facilities so they can provide the necessary care during this pandemic. The final package includes over $150 billion for it nationally. Given the New York is the national epicenter of the pandemic, billions of dollars will begin flowing to New York as soon as possible. The money will be available to fund efforts critical to defeating the virus. That includes a massive new grant program for hospitals and health care providers, personal and protective equipment for health care workers, testing supplies, increased workforce and training, new construction to house patients, emergency operation centers and more. Additional funding is also dedicated to delivering Medicare payment increases to all hospitals and providers to ensure that they receive the funding they need during this crisis, and new investments in our country’s Strategic National Stockpile, surge capacity and medical research into Covid-19.

 A special program was also created to deliver relief to state and local municipalities and help to stabilize the ones hardest hit by the virus, like in New York City and on Long Island. An expenditure relief fund of roughly $150 billion dollars will deliver at least $5.8 billion to New York, and with more than a $1.4 billion going to NYC and about half-a-billion to Long Island.

 Moreover, a $25 billion dollar allocation for American transit systems was also negotiated, delivering $4.35 billon to the New York, $3.8 billion of that exclusively for MTA. These dollars can be used to supplement revenues due to steep declines in ridership and to cover additional costs of coronavirus-related cleaning products and labor.

 In addition, a small business rescue plan that allocates more than $375 billion to forgivable loans and grants to small businesses and non-profits so they can maintain their existing workforce and help pay other expenses during this crisis, like rent, a mortgage or utilities. New York, with its 2.2 million small businesses and tens-of-thousands of non-profits can expect to see billions of dollars once companies and organizations begin to apply for those funds. NYS small businesses that currently have over 19,000 existing SBA loans will also have relief from the burden of paying those loans with a new policy of the SBA instead paying the principal, interest, and fees for a 6-month period.

 Finally, there are several “emergency appropriations” totaling $180 million that range from billions for hard-hit airports, expanded benefits to SNAP, funding for child care, of which New York would receive an additional $162 million, nutrition for seniors, nearly $1 billion dollars to help heat homes when income becomes a problem, and $1.5 billion for the National Guard to support to the hardest hit States and territories, like New York where approximately 2,200 members of the National Guard have been activated, amongst other things. New York will see tens-of-millions from this account, as well.

For more information, please feel free to contact my office at 516-599-2972 or solagesm@ny

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