In a proposal originally penned by the Treasury Department and taken up by Senate Republicans, the Trump Administration seeks passage of a nearly $1 trillion Novel Coronavirus/COVID-19 relief and economic stimulus plan that would include specific industry bailouts and payments to individuals. The White House proposal includes:
- $500 billion for payments to individual Americans, in two equal installments;
- $50 billion to bailout the airline industry;
- $150 billion for relief of “other severely distressed sectors of the US economy...”; and
- $300 billion for small business interruption loans.
Senate Democrats have outlined a competing $750 billion economic stimulus package that includes $400 billion to fund a wide array of programs (e.g., medical supplies and treatment capacity; education and child care; and expanded access to home care for senior citizens) and $350 billion of direct support to individual Americans (increased unemployment benefits; relief for student loans; and forbearance on all federally backed mortgages).
Faced with a pandemic, we expect that the negotiations to finalize and pass an economic stimulus bill will be a bipartisan effort not witnessed on Capitol Hill since President Trump took office. Despite Senators McConnell and Schumer having a long history of animosity towards each other, the circumstances presented by Novel Coronavirus/COVID-19 will likely result in fast passage of a negotiated plan that combines parts of both the White House and Democratic proposals.
The White House’s economic stimulus package proposal was preceded earlier this week by a request to Congress for approval of $45.8 billion in supplemental spending for various federal agencies involved with the government response to the pandemic, including the Veterans Health Administration ($16.6 billion), the Department of Health and Human Services ($11.5 billion), the Defense Department ($8.3 billion), and the Department of Homeland Security ($3.2 billion).
Lowenstein Sandler is committed to helping our clients, colleagues and communities during these unprecedented times. Our paramount concern is everyone’s health and safety, and doing our part to maintain the continuity of our global economy is integral to that objective. As soon as details of the economic stimulus plan becomes evident, we will provide in-depth alerts on specific aspects of the new law.
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