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Congressman Raja Krishnamoorthi Hails Passage Of $2.2 Trillion CARES Act COVID-19 Stimulus Package

March 27, 2020
Press Release
Package includes Krishnamoorthi-backed provisions to expand access to small business loans

WASHINGTON, DC – Today, Congressman Raja Krishnamoorthi (D-IL-08) voted in favor of the passage of the bipartisan CARES Act, which will direct trillions in federal economic and public health assistance to Americans across the country.

“This bipartisan stimulus package that passed this morning is a step forward for everyday Americans suffering from both the economic and public health impacts of COVID-19,” said Congressman Krishnamoorthi. “I’ve spent the past week working with both Democrats and Republicans to make sure this package is geared towards the families and small businesses that have been disproportionately hit by this pandemic. While all legislation is built on compromise and we still have far to go in overcoming the coronavirus and its economic impact, the CARES Act provides immediate aid to families, workers, and the small businesses that form the backbone of our country while greatly expanding resources to health care workers on the front lines.”

“As a former small businessman who led companies through the last economic crisis, I’m proud this legislation included provisions I advocated for to ensure that the small business loans are robust, low-interest, administered quickly, and include flexible terms to ensure hurting small businesses have expedient access to capital to sustain their operations and to keep American workers on payroll. More specifically, I pushed to ensure small business owners do not need to give personal collateral or guarantees in order to receive loans, which would have forced them to choose between saving their businesses and their workers or potentially harming their families. In addition, I successfully advocated for various other provisions in this legislation, including but not limited to: robust funding for hospitals, healthcare workers, and personal protective equipment (PPE); aid to assisted living facilities and protections for seniors; funding for the Illinois National Guard; and requiring the Secretary of Education to defer student loan payments, principal, and interest for 6 months.”

Key provisions of the legislation include:

  • A $150 Billion State and Local Coronavirus Relief Fund:  Creates a $150 billion State and Local Coronavirus Relief Fund to provide states and localities additional resources to cope with the coronavirus pandemic.  It is estimated that Illinois will receive approximately $4.9 billion in desperately needed funds to benefit our state’s residents.
  • $260 Billion in Dramatically Expanded Unemployment Benefits:  Includes numerous provisions to improve unemployment benefits including providing an additional $600 per week for the next four months, providing an additional 13 weeks of federally funded benefits, and expanding eligibility to include workers in the gig economy and self-employed workers.
  • Immediate Direct Cash Payments to Lower and Middle-Income Americans:  Provides for immediate, direct cash payments to lower-and middle-income Americans of $1,200 for each adult and $500 for each child, beginning to phase out at an annual income of $75,000 for an individual and $150,000 for a household.  These payments will provide individuals with the cash they need right now to survive with much of the economy currently shut down.
  • More Than $375 Billion in Small Business Relief:  Provides more than $375 billion in small business relief, including $349 billion for forgivable loans to small businesses to pay their employees and keep them on the payroll; $17 billion for debt relief for current and new SBA borrowers; and $10 billion in immediate disaster grants.
  • Approximately $200 Billion for Our Hospitals, Health Care Workers, and Health Research:  Provides an investment of about $200 billion in our hospitals, health systems, and health research, including expanding funding for the personal protective equipment desperately needed by our health care workers, including ventilators, N95 masks, gowns, gloves, etc.
  • More Than $100 Billion in Additional Emergency Appropriations, Including the Following:
    • Transit Agencies:  Provides $25 billion to transit agencies, which have all seen a drastic drop in revenues as social distancing has been implemented.  This funding is to be used to protect the jobs of the employees of the transit agencies, funding their paychecks during this public health emergency.  Illinois will receive $1.6 billion under this program.
    • HUD Emergency Solution Grants:  Provides $2 billion for HUD Emergency Solution Grants to states that will be distributed by formula. These grants are designed to address the impact of the coronavirus among individuals and families who are homeless or at risk of homelessness, and to support additional homeless assistance, prevention, and eviction prevention assistance.  Of this $2 billion, Illinois will receive approximately $99 million.  In addition, the bill provides an additional $2 billion for these grants that will be allocated by HUD to the most hard-pressed areas.
    • Child Care and Development Block Grant:  Supports childcare and early education by providing $3.5 billion for the Child Care and Development Block Grant.  Illinois state will receive $117.5 million under this emergency appropriation.
    • Byrne-Justice Assistance Grant Program:  Provides $850 million for this program, giving additional support to state and local law enforcement agencies, thereby allowing them, for example, to obtain the personal protective equipment and other medical items they may need during this public health emergency.  Illinois will receive approximately $32 million under this appropriation.
    • Election Assistance:  Provides $400 million for Election Assistance Grants for states to help prepare for the 2020 elections.  Coronavirus is already resulting in the postponement of some primaries and this funding can help states make voting safer for individuals.  Funding can be used, for example, to increase the ability to vote by mail, expand early voting, and expand online registration.  Illinois will receive $13.9 million for these purposes.