The US Senate and House have agreed to a bipartisan $900 billion stimulus deal which is expected to become law. The bill sends $600 deposits to most US residents, supplements state Unemployment benefit by adding $300/week, adds new funding to the PPP loan program, and more.
The highlight is again the $600 deposits/checks which will be sent out to most US residents. Parents will also get $600 per child, so a family of 4 would end up with a $2,400 check. The $600 figure is half of the $1,200 sent out in the first stimulus, though the child benefit is slightly higher at $600 versus $500 in the first round.
Assuming the details are the same as last time:
- Those who earn more than $99,000 per year ($198,000 for a couple) who will not get anything. “Income” is defined as AGI, adjusted gross income. There’s a phase out from $75,000 – $99,999 where you’ll get a smaller check.
- The $75,000 threshold is for an individual. For a couple filing jointly it’s $150,000 and for a head-of-household it’s $112,500.
- This check is not taxable, you keep all of it; you won’t have to pay taxes on it at the end of the year like you do on other income.
- Green card holders/permanent residents (“resident aliens”) will receive the stimulus checks.
- See additional details in our post on the first stimulus bill.
Last time around, some people had issues with their bank accounts not being on file with the IRS, and thus a longer wait time until getting physically mailed checks. Hopefully by now you have your bank in their system, if not, you’ll get it in the mail similar to the first time.
The bill supplements the regular state unemployment insurance (UI) by $300 per week. (That’s half the amount of the first stimulus bill.) For example, in California the UI benefit maxes out at $450/week for high earners. Now, you’ll get $750/week with the added $300 from the feds. Also important: the bill offers the $300/week of unemployment even to those workers whose regular benefits have expired will still be able to get the $300.
The benefit is slated to be in place for 11 weeks from December 28 through March 14. Gig workers will also be able to get this 11 week benefit, just as was the case for the first stimulus round.
The bill revives the lapsed Payroll Protection Program (PPP) which offers loans to small business, including some criteria which allows the loan to be forgiven. With another $284B in funding, more businesses can borrow and get loan forgiveness. I assume it’s only for those businesses who were not helped with the first stimulus, but I’m not clear on that point right now.
An interesting thing settled in this bill is that loans forgiven under PPP (either round) will allow the costs covered by the forgiven loan to be deducted on their tax returns. Seems strange to me, but certainly a nice additional benefit from the PPP forgiveness.
- Extends the moratorium on evictions through January; previously this had been slated to end after December
- $25B in unspecified renter’s assistance
- Some sort of tax break for corporate meal expenses to help revive the restaurant industry
- Extends the time states and cities have to use CARES Act funds through the end of 2021 (previously they had to use it by the end of 2020)
- Bills gives billions of dollars toward vaccine distribution and other health measures
- Gives $13B in increased SNAP benefits
- Gives $82B for schools and colleges
- Gives $7B toward helping certain areas with broadband access
- A certain tax credit for employers who offer paid sick leave
- $10B toward child care assistance
- $20 billion in EIDL Grants for small businesses (unclear if they’ll have the $1,000 grant offer this time)