Bipartisan Group of Senators Releases $908 Billion Coronavirus Relief Proposal

On December 1, a bipartisan group of senators released a $908 billion coronavirus relief package in an attempt to end the impasse over additional federal pandemic relief. The package includes $160 billion to state, local, and tribal governments, $288 billion to the Paycheck Protection Program, $12 billion to Community Development Financial Institutions (CDFIs) and Minority Depository Institutions (MDIs), $25 billion in rental assistance, and $180 billion in additional unemployment insurance. Senate Republicans previously supported a $500 billion coronavirus relief proposal, whereas Democratic leadership laid out a $2.2 trillion alternative.

Also on December 1, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell released a revised $500 billion relief plan. The plan, which has been seen as a rejection of the bipartisan plan released that same day, includes $332 billion in small business assistance programs, $257 billion for the Paycheck Protection Program, an extension of emergency unemployment insurance, and authorization for short-term aid to childcare. The plan would also extend the deadline for the Coronavirus Relief Fund through September 30, 2021. It is currently set to expire at the end of the year.

While it is possible for a coronavirus relief package to move on its own, many lawmakers are suggesting that they attach the targeted relief to the end of year spending deal. House and Senate leadership is working to finalize a Fiscal Year 2021 (FY21) spending package ahead of December 11, when the current continuing resolution funding the federal government is set to expire. It remains unclear whether a final FY21 spending bill will come together this week and if so whether it will include coronavirus relief.

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