Rep. Cisneros Votes for Coronavirus Stimulus Package for CA-39 Workers, Small Businesses, and Healthcare Workers
WASHINGTON, DC - Today, Representative Gilbert R. Cisneros, Jr. (CA-39) voted for the bipartisan Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security (CARES) Act. The Senate passed the bill on Wednesday, and the President is set to sign it into law. The CARES Act is the third coronavirus response bill passed by Congress. Rep. Cisneros delivered a floor speech to express his support of the bill.
“I’m grateful that my colleagues and I in the House of Representatives just passed the CARES Act with overwhelming bipartisan support. Democrats and Republicans set aside their political differences and came together to help the American people,” said Rep. Cisneros. “During this crisis, Congress has shown we can work across the aisle to deliver the resources and funding that our constituents need. However, we cannot stop here. We can and must do more to ensure our constituents are being taken care of throughout this global pandemic. As I have since my first day in Congress, I’ll continue to work with my Democratic and Republican colleagues to put the American people first.”
Here are just a few of the numerous initiatives in this historic piece of legislation that will benefit the residents of California’s 39th District.
- 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 California will receive approximately $15.321 billion in desperately needed funds to benefit our state’s residents. [TABLE]
- $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, Healthcare 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 healthcare workers, including ventilators, n95 masks, gowns, and gloves.
- Accountability and Oversight: Democrats prevented secret bailouts and added special oversight requirements to ensure that any taxpayer dollars given to industry go first and foremost to workers’ paychecks and benefits, not used for CEO bonuses, stock buybacks or dividends.
- 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. California will receive $3,750,279,333 under this program. [TABLE]
- 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, California will receive $237,160,655. In addition, the bill provides an additional $2 billion for these grants that will be allocated by HUD to the most hard-pressed areas. [TABLE]
- Child Care and Development Block Grant: Supports child care and early education by providing $3.5 billion for the Child Care and Development Block Grant. California will receive $347,731,086, including $19.97 million for California’s 39th District, under this emergency appropriation.
- Low-Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP): Provides $900 million to help low-income families pay their heating and cooling bills. California will receive $74,956,000 for this purpose during this public health emergency. [TABLE]
- Byrne-Justice Assistance Grant Program: Provides $850 million for this program, giving additional support to state and local law enforcement agencies, thereby allowing them to obtain the personal protective equipment and other medical items they may need during this public health emergency. California will receive $96,184,893 under this appropriation. [TABLE]
- CDC Coronavirus State, Local and Tribal Grants Minimum Awards: Provides about $750 million in CDC State, Local, and Tribal Grants Minimum Awards to help agencies cope with the public health emergency. The minimum award for California is $41,896,000. In addition, states can apply for additional funds above their minimum award, based on their needs. [TABLE]
- 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 to increase the ability to vote by mail, expand early voting, and expand online registration. California will receive $36,293,345 for these purposes. [TABLE]
On March 4, the House passed the first coronavirus response bill, a bipartisan emergency response funding package of $8.3 billion of entirely new funds, which the President has signed:
- Commits more than $3 billion to the development of treatments and a vaccine available to all, and protects against price-gouging of medicines developed with taxpayer dollars.
- Provides $2.2 billion in prevention, preparedness and response measures, including nearly a billion dollars to help state, local, tribal and territorial health systems.
- Helps families by extending telemedicine services regardless of where they live and supports small businesses, with billions in low-interest SBA loans to those affected.
On March 14, the House passed the second coronavirus response bill: the Families First Coronavirus Response Act, which the President also signed into law.
- For families’ health security: this legislation ensures free coronavirus testing for everyone who needs a test, including the uninsured. The legislation also increases funding for Medicaid to support local, state, tribal and territorial health systems, so that they have the resources needed to combat this public health emergency.
- For families’ economic security: the bill provides two weeks of paid sick leave and up to three months of family and medical leave for eligible workers and enhances Unemployment Insurance. It also supports small businesses by fully reimbursing them for providing leave.
- For families’ food security: our legislation strengthens nutrition initiatives including SNAP, student meals, seniors’ meals, and food banks.