Publisher's note: This informational nugget was sent to me by Ben Shapiro, who represents the Daily Wire, and since this is one of the most topical news events, it should be published on BCN.
The author of this post is Joseph Curl.
The U.S. Senate is considering upping the payments to Americans in a massive stimulus bill to stem the effects of the coronavirus outbreak on the economy.
Sources familiar with the negotiations tell Fox News
that members of Congress and the Treasury Department are discussing plans to deliver $1,200 to all Americans who qualify in two payments, for a total of $2,400. Children will receive $500 under the plan.
But not all would qualify. "One source told Fox Business Network that the amount would start to reduce for those making $75,000 and above - and the checks would be limited to those who make $99,000 or less."
Meanwhile, Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin on Thursday told Fox Business Network that there are plans to deliver $1,000 to most adult Americans within three weeks, and the same $500 per child. That means a family of four would receive as much as $3,000. In early discussions, the plans are for the first checks to go out around April 6, followed by a second wave of the same amount some time in mid-May if the crisis has not abated.
Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) said Thursday that he hopes to deliver aid to families "as rapidly as possible."
"Senate Republicans want to put cash in the hands of the American people,"
McConnell said. "This is something we want to do right away. This is not an ordinary policy, but this is not an ordinary time. The American people need help and they need it fast. This will deliver it."
The cost for the stimulus package to Americans tops $500 billion, while the total cost will be more than $1 trillion.
But who would qualify? "McConnell indicated job status would not be a factor, and that the money would go to unemployed workers and those recently laid off; those still working; and retirees, even if they're already receiving Social Security checks,"
- McConnell's new proposal also includes relief and support for small businesses, and would provide "new federally guaranteed loans" that he said would "address immediate cash flow problems." McConnell also said that the Senate was working to let "qualified" small businesses get liquidity through "familiar institutions" like their community banks.
- He added that the relief for small businesses would help them to "endure, help workers keep their jobs, and businesses and workers emerge from this ready to thrive."
Mnuchin has also announced others plans to ease the financial burden on Americans.
"If you owe a payment to the IRS, you can defer up to $1 million as an individual," he said, adding that the payments would be "interest free and penalty free for 90 days."
But Americans must still file by April 15.
"All you have to do is file your taxes; you'll automatically not get charged interest in penalties,"
Mnuchin said during a coronavirus briefing Wednesday with President Trump looking on.
A new Marist poll
conducted for NPR/PBS News earlier this week found that 18% of adults in the U.S. said that they had already lost their job or had their hours reduced due to the pandemic.
President Trump said this week he supports direct payouts to Americans. "I think we're going to do something that gets money to them as quickly as possible. That may not be an accurate way of doing it. Some people obviously shouldn't be getting a check for $1,000 but we'll have an idea at the end of the day what we will be doing,"
"We're going big,"
Trump said. "We want to go big, go solid."