COVID-19

U.S. awaits deal on next round of COVID-19 response

Kimberly Adams Mar 13, 2020
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House Speaker Nancy Pelosi has introduced a bill to respond to the spread of the coronavirus. Saul Loeb/AFP via Getty Images
COVID-19

U.S. awaits deal on next round of COVID-19 response

Kimberly Adams Mar 13, 2020
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi has introduced a bill to respond to the spread of the coronavirus. Saul Loeb/AFP via Getty Images
HTML EMBED:
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Negotiations continue today over the next round of federal response to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Congress and the White House already signed off on $8.3 billion in emergency funding for COVID-19 response. House Democrats are proposing a raft of measures to provide an economic backstop to this health crisis.

Round 2 of federal coronavirus response is set to include a variety of provisions making it easier for people to stay home when they are sick.

“It allows people to take two weeks of paid sick days,” said Eileen Appelbaum, co-director at the Center for Economic and Policy Research. “If you are a small employer, the Treasury will reimburse you. Otherwise, the employer pays for that.”

The plan also includes money for the states to cover an expected spike in unemployment claims.

“For those who are required to stay at home, or not going to work, I think maybe in some cases not being paid, then this is a way of addressing it,” said Bill Hoagland, senior vice president at the Bipartisan Policy Center.

Hoagland says this particular package is designed more to help individual workers and families.

“I think later on, we will see maybe more direct assistance as it relates to businesses,” he said.

But first, the White House and the Democrats have to agree on what to do now.

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