The American Rescue Plan or the COVID-19 relief bill has been approved, paving the way for the disbursement of $1400 stimulus checks, vaccination fund allocation to the state, local and tribal governments, and the increment of a child tax credit.
There is so much more to President Joe Biden’s COVID-19 relief package that needs to be highlighted. The relief bill will help the federal government to provide much-needed financial aid to the poor and needy Americans.
We have compiled 10 lesser-known attributes of the package:
1. Independent restaurants package of $28.6 billion
The restaurant industry is entitled to receive $28.6 billion under the provisions of the American Rescue Plan. The amount will be allocated in accordance with the Restaurants Act that has been pending since last year in the Senate. The independent restaurants will receive debt-free aid under this act. It will mainly facilitate the businesses that have reported a loss in revenue because of the pandemic.
2. Housing sector will receive $22 billion
Under the American Rescue Plan, $21.5 billion will be allocated for rental assistance to various states and cities. This is in addition to 25% aid received in December 2020.
This allocation will help the renters to pay back their payments in the name of rental services. The federal government will be providing $100 million to housing organizations to facilitate homeowners and renters to fight against housing discrimination because of the COVID-19 pandemic.
3. Grant of $125 billion for public school reopening
Under the American Rescue Plan, $125 billion will be allocated to K-12 public schools with an aim to reopen the schools for the in-person learning process. It is also meant to support students who have suffered because of school closedown amidst pandemics.
It is estimated that around $122 billion will be provided to the school districts to pay for the health protocols inside school buildings.
Approximately $3 billion are allocated for disabled students, while $2.75 billion will go to non-public schools with students from low-income families.
4. Colleges, Universities and Students will get $4 billion
Under President Biden’s relief package $39.6 billion will be allocated to colleges and universities that had to cut down almost 650,000 jobs because of the pandemic. Half of the aid will go to the emergency financial grants for students to help them pay for food, health care, housing, and other miscellaneous needs.
5. Black, Hispanic and other minority farmers get $5 billion
Under the American Rescue Plan, $10.4 billion will be allocated to ensure food supply to the needy Americans. $5 billion is allocated to farmers who belong to socially disadvantaged backgrounds. These include Native Americans, Black, Asian Americans, and Hispanic farmers.
They will be eligible to receive grants for outstanding debts and for outreach, education, training, and other technical assistance needed to uplift their status.
6. Expansion of Obamacare
This particular relief bill is set to make the first major expansion in the affordable care act, commonly known as “Obamacare”. The government ensures to increase premium support in the marketplace, subsidize the COBRA coverage along with providing incentives to 12 states that are still not covered under the ACA.
This expansion will add about $62 billion in the health care system along with $15.2 billion in Medicaid incentives, and a further $4.5 billion for the people who are receiving unemployment insurance.
7. Assistance of $1.25 billion to the closed event venues and music clubs
The entertainment industry came to a standstill in the wake of the coronavirus pandemic. President Biden’s relief bill will provide a whopping $1.25 billion to the Shuttered Venues Operators Grant Program which will help the event venues and the music clubs to revive their operations.
8. Rural health care gets $500 million
Rural health care sector is entitled to receive $500 million in funds to facilitate vaccine distribution, capacity expansion, hiring more rural health care providers, and providing access to telehealth.
9. Grant of $470 million for arts, libraries and humanities:
Under President Biden’s relief package, more than 17,000 public libraries will get approximately $200 million in funds. The arts and cultural organizations will get approximately $270 million in the grant.
10. SNAP food stamps and food supply chains get a 15% boost
Under the provisions of the bill, the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program will get a boost by 15%. More than 50 million Americans struggled to feed their families during the pandemic. The bill aims to provide $4 billion to food supply chains to facilitate them in purchasing and distributing food items among the needy Americans along with equipping the farmers and frontline workers in the food industry to maintain high-quality standards.