HONOLULU (KHON2) — The House passed a $900 billion pandemic relief package that would deliver financial support to struggling businesses and individuals as the country continues its fight against the coronavirus pandemic.
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Hawaii is expected to receive $1.7 billion of that amount if passed by the senate.
Highlights of the $900 billion relief measure include:
- $120 billion in expanded unemployment benefits
- Federal assistance to supplement state unemployment benefits, to include $300 per week through March 14, 2021 and the continuation of Pandemic Emergency Unemployment Compensation (PEUC) and Pandemic Unemployment Assistance (PUA).
- $166 billion in further direct cash payments to lower and middle income Americans
- $325 billion in additional small business relief
- More than $284 billion for first and second forgivable loans through the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP),
- $15 billion in dedicated funding for live venues, independent movie theaters and cultural institutions.
- $20 billion for targeted Economic Injury Disaster Loan (EIDL) Grants
- $3.5 billion for continued Small Business Administration debt relief payments.
- $25 billion in emergency assistance to renters
- $73 billion for health and human services
- More than $22 billion, all sent directly to states, for testing, tracing and COVID-19 mitigation programs.
- $4.5 billion in mental health funding, $9 billion in support for health care providers
- $26 billion for nutrition assistance for hungry families
- $13 billion in increased Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) and child nutrition benefits
- $13 billion for payments, purchases and loans to farmers and ranchers who have suffered losses due to the pandemic.
- $82 billion for schools
“Though the delay in enacting this further emergency assistance was inexcusable, the additional $900 billion in federal funding to address critical COVID-19 needs throughout our country could not come at a more critical time for our country and Hawaii,” said U.S. Congressman Ed Case. “I especially support the additional assistance to our healthcare frontlines including vaccine distribution, to hard-hit areas of our economy such as travel and tourism, to our small businesses and to our unemployed workers.”
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