Rep. Madeleine Dean (PA-04) and Rep. Don Beyer (VA-08) sent a letter to House Speaker Pelosi and Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy with recommendations on how to provide Americans with direct cash support. This letter is a follow up to theirprevious letterwhich outlined a robust proposal to provide Americans with cash support throughout the duration of the COVID19 economic crisis.The proposal mirrorsSenators Booker, Bennett, and Brown’s efforts in the Senate.
In this letter, the representativesoutline a seriesofrecommendations based on lessons learned from the last round of payments – including using economic triggers for these payments, updating eligibility requirements, and best practices for implementation. The letter emphasizes the importance of ensuring all adultsand all dependents receive payments.
"I was pleased to see the CARES act gave direct cash payments to American families. The last few weeks have proven that we need to get cash assistance out more quickly and ensure we reach as many Americans as possible”,Rep. Dean said. “Due to the severity and duration of this crisis, we are proposing continued direct cash and recommendations on how to best get this relief out."
The letter also importantly calls for getting payments out to those who were left out of the last disbursement of payments – including non-child dependents, college students, 17 and 18 year old young people, and immigrant households.
“So many Americans need help right now, and Congress must not fail them. This is not a time to hold back – leaving people at the mercy of this crisis would be immoral and would hurt, not help, the broader economy,”Rep. Beyer said. “We saw quickly that the first round of direct payments needed improvements and we should make them rapidly and get assistance to those who need it, especially the millions worried about making their rent payments or buying food."
Finally, the letter asks for IRS’s coordination with states, as well as recommending using electronic payments, to get these payments out efficiently. Good governance and data-sharing is important to ensure we use the best mechanisms to get relief to the families that need it most. These payments are a necessary vehicle to help American families weather this economic crisis – and should be included in a robust economic package.
This crisis has left millions of people without income, without healthcare, and without a way to meet basic needs,”Adam Ruben, director of Economic Security Project Action, said. “This isn’t the time for timid ideas: we need big, bold solutions to what is shaping up to be a long-term crisis. Regular payments would give families economic security so that no one is one missed paycheck away from living on the street."
The proposal includes:
$2,000 payment for every:
- Adult, including those who receive Social Security, VA, or SSI benefits
- Child and non-child dependent
1. Workers who filed for Tax Year 2019
2. Non-filers who file an Individual Income Tax Return (1040) separately
3. Does not include higher-income taxpayers, with a phase-out rate of 5% of the aggregate credit amount starting at higher incomes
$1,500 payment if:
- The public health emergency continues into the fall, as certified by the Secretary of Health and Human Services, and the Secretary of the Treasury makes an Economic Turmoil Designation
- ORthe 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 theDecember-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.