December 21, 2020
Webster: Targeted Assistance Is Coming
Washington, DC – Today, after months of delay, Speaker Pelosi finally agreed to, and allowed a vote on a COVID aid package that has bipartisan support, along with a FY2021 appropriations bill. The COVID Relief package provides about $900 billion in assistance but will cost $325 billion thanks to Republicans insisting that Congress use existing, unused federal funds. This is a huge accomplishment and an all-around win for COVID-19 impacted Americans and all taxpayers.
“After spending months playing political games and trying to use the Coronavirus pandemic to push through their socialist agenda, last night Democrats finally caved and agreed to a COVID-19 relief bill that is not much different than proposals Republicans offered starting last summer,” Rep. Webster said.
“While I am disappointed by the process and timeline that it took to get to this point, I am pleased it extends the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) and allows small business owners to deduct PPP expenses. PPP has been a lifeline for countless small businesses and under this bill those still experiencing severe revenue reductions can apply for a second loan. It also includes money to get students back into the classroom and to ensure that the COVID-19 vaccine is available as soon as possible – to all who want it.
“As a result of these and many other good provisions, I support this critical legislation. In addition to providing targeted relief to those impacted most severely by COVID-19, the package includes robust funding for the Departments of Defense and Veterans’ Affairs to ensure our men and women in uniform have the resources they need to protect and defend our great nation and our Veterans receive the best care possible.
“When government blocks an American’s ability to work and earn a living it government has a responsibility to provide assistance to these individuals. This targeted relief aids businesses and hardworking Americans still trying to recover from government required lockdowns. I remain frustrated that Congress continuously embraces the Washington presumption that nothing in the budget can be cut in order to fund priorities or critical assistance without increasing the deficit. I will continue to advocate for and work on behalf of Florida’s hardworking taxpayers and families to advance common-sense reforms and principled policy and budgets that get our fiscal house in order.”
Thanks to Republicans in Congress, this bill delivers robust assistance at a much-reduced price tag. This is especially remarkable compared to the $3.3 trillion Heroes 1 Act and $2.4 trillion Heroes 2 Act bills proposed by Nancy Pelosi to pander to voters ahead of the November elections.
Additional highlights of today’s bipartisan compromise:
- Includes provisions to ensure Democrats can’t leverage taxpayer dollars to bail-out poorly managed states.
- Provides funding for the Commodity Supplemental Food Program, a program that serves over 700,000 older Americans monthly.
- Provides funding for broadband, including $300 million for rural broadband and $250 million for telehealth.
- $13 billion to support our farmers and agriculture sector.
- $4 billion for substance abuse – significant progress made over past several years on opioid addiction has been reversed because of impact of COVID lockdowns
- $82 billion in funding for schools and universities to assist with reopening for in-person learning that also includes $2.75 billion in designated funds for private K through 12 education.
- $25 billion in temporary and targeted rental assistance for individuals who lost their source of income during the pandemic.
- Prohibits illegal aliens from receiving $600 checks provided for adults and dependents struggling due to the coronavirus pandemic.
- $15 billion is also allocated for local entertainment venues, movie theaters, and museums that are experiencing significant revenue loss.