Governor Signs $2.2B COVID Relief Package For Washington Schools, Businesses, Renters, Immigrants
A fresh round of federal aid will soon be flowing to Washington businesses and individuals hit hard by the COVID pandemic.
On Friday, Gov. Jay Inslee signed into law a $2.2 billion relief package funded with money approved by Congress in December.
The package includes:
- $716M for schools to help return to in-person learning and address student learning loss
- $618M for public health, including vaccine administration
- $365M for rental assistance
- $290M for small business and childcare provider grants
- $70M to replenish the state’s immigrant workers relief fund
- $26M for food assistance
According to the Office of Financial Management, the business and rental assistance will be available beginning in mid-March.
Also Friday, Inslee signed into law a measure to exempt federal emergency assistance grants from the state’s business and occupation tax. That’s expected to save Washington businesses more than $200 million, according to the state Senate.
A third bill signed into law by Inslee on Friday will free up an additional $400 million for the state’s federal Coronavirus Relief Fund. This is accomplished by shifting the cost of COVID-related Medicaid rate enhancements and incentives away from the relief fund and instead paying for those enhancements and incentives with other sources of state and federal money.
The new $2.2 billion relief package follows the federal CARES Act which sent approximately $3 billion to the state of Washington last year. About $1 billion of that went to local governments while Inslee decided how to spend the other roughly $2 billion. This time around, state lawmakers – not Inslee –decided how to spend the funds because the Legislature was back in session.
President-elect Joe Biden has long pledged he would deliver an aggressive plan to address the raging coronavirus pandemic and the painful recession it spawned. Continue Reading $1,400 Checks And Help For The Jobless: What’s In Joe Biden’s Plan To Rescue The Economy
With millions of Americans waiting for desperately needed economic aid, a massive relief package remains in limbo as President Trump weighs whether to sign it into law. Continue Reading ‘All Is Not Calm’: Congress Scrambles After President Trump Blasts COVID-19 Relief Package
The Senate acted swiftly Monday night, in a 91-7 vote, to approve more than $900 billion for coronavirus assistance, shortly after the House of Representatives passed the package. The aid comes after months of partisan sniping over what elements should be in a relief measure that virtually all lawmakers on Capitol Hill argued was long overdue. Continue Reading Congress Passes $900 Billion Coronavirus Relief Bill, Ending Months-Long Stalemate