(WTOC) - The massive $900 billion coronavirus relief package is now law.
Congress made it a priority to get direct payments out to struggling Americans. But only a fraction of that money is actually going toward stimulus checks.
Of the $900 billion total, only $166 billion, is going toward stimulus checks. Americans making less than $75,000 qualify for the $600 check.
Another $120 billion is set-aside for $300 unemployment checks for people who lost their jobs, due to COVID. $325 billion in aid will also be provided to small businesses.
Much of that will fund the Paycheck Protection Program. Another $82 billion will go to schools.
More than $50 billion is set-aside for public health, including vaccine distribution, and COVID testing. There’s also $25 billion set-aside for rental assistance and $13 billion in additional SNAP benefits.
The $900 billion relief package was part of a larger, $2.3 trillion spending bill. Some of the other items in the bill have nothing to do with COVID, at all.
That’s because the spending bill and the COVID aid were merged into one.
For example, there’s the official recognition of the reincarnation of the Dalai Lama. Or, the establishment of two new Smithsonian museums, granting West Virginia a national park, and even $10 million for Gender Programs in Pakistan.
At this point, Congress is still at a standstill when it comes to increasing the $600 checks to $2,000.
We’ll continue to follow any developments.