U.S. President Joe Biden has signed into law a 1.9 trillion-dollar coronavirus relief package, aiming to speed up the country’s economic recovery from the coronavirus pandemic.
The American Rescue Plan includes stimulus checks and increased financial support for those that are eligible with children and the unemployed. But the bill has faced strong opposition from Republicans, who say it does not do enough to help families.
CGTN’s Sarah Walton explains what’s in the plan.
The most high-profile measure in the bill is a $1,400-dollar direct payment for those earning up to $75,000 dollars a year, $112,500 for heads of household and $150,000 for married couples filing jointly.
The stimulus checks should start arriving this weekend for some who have a direct deposit set up with the IRS or by mailed checks. They’re meant to help people pay bills and encourage spending to boost the economy. Experts say most Americans will use that money.
The wide-ranging bill also increases Child Tax Credit for parents, from $2000 a year per child to $3000 ages 6 to 17 and $3,600 per child for six and younger.
It also includes billions for coronavirus testing, contact tracing and vaccines development. There’s money to help schools reopen and private businesses to stay afloat. And there’s financial support for state and local governments.
One of its main aims is to tackle the unemployment rate in the U.S., which now sits at 6.2 percent. Those out of work will now get an extra payment of $300 a week in benefits.
But experts say the bill’s biggest boost against joblessness will come from hastening the end of the pandemic.
Biden says he’ll now travel the country with other administration officials to meet those benefiting from his Rescue Plan, and if his plan doesn’t work, he’ll admit it.