Press Releases

COVID-19: Reps. Dean and Beyer Lead Letter Calling for Direct Cash Assistance to Help Americans During Economic Fallout of COVID-19 Outbreak

Washington, March 21, 2020

Rep. Madeleine Dean (PA-04) and Rep. Don Beyer (VA-08) sent a letter to House Speaker Pelosi and Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy, outlining a robust proposal to provide Americans with direct cash support, following the economic impact of COVID-19. 

“American workers have been forced out of work by the COVID-19 outbreak and will now face unique financial challenges," Rep. Dean said. "This financial and public health crisis needs bold action -- providing direct cash payments to Americans will ensure no one is choosing between their health or bankruptcy.” 

In this letter, the representatives outlined a series of payments to working families, beginning with $2,000 for each American. These payments are to continue, depending on the longevity of the crisis. Payments will only terminate after unemployment drops to less than 0.5 percentage points above the levels experienced before the Coronavirus sparked downturn.

“Direct assistance can give families a swift, certain and vital lifeline while also providing a sorely needed boost to demand when businesses are able to reopen.” Rep Beyer said. “This is not a silver bullet, but will be a critical part of the massive federal response required by this crisis.”

The new proposal builds on The Families First Coronavirus Response Act to provide additional measures needed to offset the economic crisis.

The proposal includes: 

Immediate Payment: 

$2,000 payment for every: 

     -- Adult, including those who receive Social Security, VA, or SSI benefits

Child and non-child dependent   

     Eligibility:   

     -- Workers who filed for Tax Year 2019

     -- Non-filers who file an Individual Income Tax Return (1040) separately

Does not include higher-income taxpayers, with a phase-out rate of 5% of the aggregate credit amount starting at higher incomes

 Second Payment:

     $1,500 payment if: 

     The public health emergency continues into July, as certified by the Secretary of Health and Human Services, and the Secretary of the Treasury makes an Economic Turmoil Designation 

     OR the unemployment in June is at least 1 percentage point higher than the three-month moving average from December 2019 to February 2020 

     Half payment of $750 per person if the June unemployment rate is 0.5 percentage point above the December 2019 – February 2020 average 

 Additional Quarterly Payments: 

     $1,000 per quarter if:  

     The Treasury Secretary makes an Economic Turmoil Designation and the unemployment rate in last month of the previous quarter is up at least 1 percentage point compared to the December-February average 

     Half payment of $500 if the unemployment rate remains at least 0.5 percentage points above December 2019 – February 2020 

     Payments continue quarterly until unemployment falls to within 0.5 percentage points of levels from December 2019 – February 2020.