House, after two-day delay, passes second COVID-19 relief package

coronavirus politics

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The House voted Thursday to pass $484 billion second COVID-19 bailout that includes $310 billion for small business assistance and $75 billion to reimburse hospitals and healthcare providers for COVID-19-related expenses and lost revenue.

The Senate had passed the measure on Tuesday, meaning with the House now on board, the bill can go to the desk of President Trump, who has indicated a willingness to sign it into law.

“I supported this package today because it is critical to our continued recovery as a nation to the COVID-19 pandemic,” Virginia Republican Congressman Rob Wittman said after the vote. “Specifically, it provides much-needed funds to replenish the Paycheck Protection Program created by the CARES Act and provides additional monies to the Economic Injury Disaster Loan grant program.

“Replenishing the fund is good news, but comes too late for many small businesses who were denied access to emergency loans since the PPP ran out of money due to the needless delay on negotiations. This is unacceptable, and we must do better,” Wittman said.

“Over the last few weeks, I’ve heard from restaurant owners, auto body mechanics, farmers, clothing retailers, electricians, hospitality workers, hair stylists, and many more of our Central Virginia neighbors about the extreme financial hardships their businesses are facing. The economic impacts of this crisis are wide-ranging and felt in every community across our district, and the federal government must step up to provide additional relief during this moment of profound uncertainty,” Virginia Democratic Congresswoman Abigail Spanberger said.

“Today, the House responded to this urgent need by passing robust funding for the PPP and EIDL programs, so that small businesses and their employees can protect their livelihoods, put food on the table, and weather this financial downturn. But our work is far, far from over. Going forward, I’ll keep fighting for the urgent assistance our small businesses require—and as I know there is considerable frustration with the initial implementation of PPP, I’ll also be pushing for strengthened oversight of these loan programs. I’ll also be fighting for increased financial support to Virginia’s counties and localities, so that they can keep the lights on, keep the water running, and maintain essential law enforcement and EMS services across our communities,” Spanberger said.

 


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