New coronavirus relief bill available for VA, DC Residents

Virginia – Ten months into the pandemic, Congress agreed to a new coronavirus relief bill which includes another round of direct payments. Many will see a $600 stimulus check soon. The new payment is half of what Americans received earlier this year when the federal government sent out $1,200 stimulus checks.
For many Virginia and District of Columbia residents, it means direct cash payments. It additionally means expanded and extended federal unemployment benefits, a stay on evictions and help for business and schools.
This is what it could mean for you:
  • Stimulus payments for most residents would be $600, half of what was sent out in the spring. The payments will go to those who made under $75,000 individually and under $150,000 as a couple in 2019. Payments will decrease for individuals who made over $75,000 and won’t be accessible for those who earned more than $99,000. Grown-ups will also get $600 for each kid they claim as a dependent. It’s unknown when the cash will come by, but the CARES Act payments came within two months for most Americans.
  • Government unemployment benefits will provide an extra $300 every week and extend coverage to those qualified for additional 11 weeks, going through at least March 14. The benefits also extend to self-employed and gig workers who are drawing from the Pandemic Unemployment Assistance program. Many federal benefits were set to expire the day after Christmas. The money is half of the $600 per week unemployed people got under the previous relief package. Pennsylvania has confronted an unprecedented surge in unemployment throughout the pandemic.
  • A government ban on evictions would be extended through Jan. 31. The current ban was set to expire toward the end of the year. Virginia Gov. Ralph Northam signed a revised state budget Nov. 18 that prohibits evictions and utilities from shutting off power, water and gas through the end of the state of emergency. In May, D.C. Mayor Muriel E. Bowser signed a ban on eviction filings for 60 days after the state of emergency lifts. The D.C. Council recently voted to let Bowser extend it to March 31, The Washington Post reported. A D.C. Superior Court judge Anthony Epstein ruled last week that the District’s moratorium on filing new eviction cases “does not pass constitutional muster.”
  • There would be more than $284 billion under the Paycheck Protection Program, which has been extended to help a wider array of organizations.
  • Schools would get $82 billion for HVAC repairs in an effort to help get kids and teachers back into school safely. There is no word on the amount DC or Virginia schools may get.

Gayle Gordon

As a college student, making an extra buck now and then was very important. I started as a part-time reporter since I was 19 yo, and I couldn’t believe it might become a long-time career. I'm happy to be part of the Virginian Tribune's team.

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