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Two new stimulus checks? These lawmakers want more direct payments – Portland, Oregon

Portland, Oregon 2021-05-30 16:31:03 –

Washington (NEXSTAR) — Many Americans want a fourth stimulus check, but some lawmakers have already talked about a fifth stimulus check. Members of a powerful parliamentary commission are seeking additional financial relief from the federal government for families still suffering during the coronavirus pandemic.

With the third round of the $ 1,400 stimulus coming up, a letter from seven Democrats on the House Revenue Commission to President Joe Biden later last week to help housing, food, and others. Payments requesting direct payments for Rounds 4 and 5. The committee oversees government budgeting and taxation. The group that signed the letter represents about 15% of the members of the committee.

“As the country continues to fight the global pandemic and recession, families and workers do not have to worry about having enough money to pay for their necessities in the coming months,” the letter said. It is written.

letter, As of May 17, does not mention the amount of dollars, but does indicate the possibility of two additional bailouts.

“With the 4th and 5th checks, an additional 12 million people can get out of poverty,” the letter says. In combination with the effect of ” [American Recovery Plan]Direct payments could reduce the number of poor people in 2021 from 44 million to 16 million. “

Earlier parliamentary letters calling for additional relief were signed by more than 80 Democrats. The change.org petition on this subject has received over 2 million signatures from the general public.

Despite growing support among some Democrats, the fourth stimulus check faces major hurdles. The third bailout passed parliament, thanks to a budget loophole that failed to get bipartisan support. Since then, many Republican governors have vetoed federal COVID unemployment insurance, claiming that they encourage people to stay home and collect money instead of returning to work. Proposals for additional direct payments may face similar criticism.

In addition, Democratic leaders such as Nancy Pelosi have been relatively silent about the possibility of additional checks. Instead, their focus is on passing Biden’s infrastructure program.

when Asked directly about stimulus check Earlier this month, White House spokesman Jen Psaki said, “Let’s see what parliamentarians propose,” adding that payments were “not free.”

The government has made three direct payments since the coronavirus pandemic began. About a year ago, the government sent a $ 1,200 stimulus check to most Americans through the CARES Act. At the end of 2020, the government approved a per capita payment of $ 600. This was followed by a third stimulus payment of $ 1,400.

In the latest round of relief assistance for the new coronavirus infection (COVID-19), the US government said it had sent about 159 million direct payments to households for a total of $ 376 billion.

Unused stimulus check

Recording request by Boston Herald Found that 1.24 million economic impact payments had not yet been used since the first round of aid.

This paper was obtained from the Internal Revenue Service under the Information Disclosure Law.

The IRS told Herald that 1,245,339 non-monetized checks were “refused to accept, repaid, or redeemed stimulus checks received from the IRS as a result of the CARES Act, which was signed by law on March 27. It represents the number of people who didn’t. ” , 2020. “

According to Herald, the state with the best stimulus checks is California at 123,265, followed by Florida at 92,018. The next highest are Texas, New York, and Pennsylvania.

In New England, Massachusetts ranked first with 27,689, Connecticut 13,353, New Hampshire 5,859, Maine 5,426, Rhode Island 4,190 and Vermont 3,169.

Employers are struggling to fill vacant positions

US companies are looking to increase employment and production, but some industries are short of both employees and raw materials.

The recovery in the US job market paused last month as many companies, from restaurants and hotels to factories and construction companies, struggled to find enough workers to keep up with the rapidly growing economic recovery.

Many factors seem to be reflected in the slowdown in employment last month. According to a government survey, about 3 million people are hesitant to look for a job for fear of being infected with the virus. Also, after many women returned in the last two months, more women left the workforce last month to take care of their children.

In addition, construction companies and manufacturers, especially automakers, have been short of parts due to supply chain blockages and have had to delay production for now. Both sectors curtailed employment in April. Some companies also say that the $ 300 weekly unemployment benefit paid by the federal government discourages some of the unemployed from getting new jobs.

Still, companies have been increasing employment for the fourth straight month. Reported by the Ministry of LaborHowever, the government lowered the combined employment growth estimates for February and March by 78,000.

With the resumption of employment, some Americans are looking for a job. This means that if you can’t find a job right away, you’ll be counted as a new unemployed person. This happened in April when the unemployment rate rose from 6% to 6.1%.

Employers are now posting far more jobs than they were before the pandemic, and many restaurant windows are dotted with “seeking help” signs. Other signs of labor shortages are also emerging: April’s average hourly wage rose 0.7% to $ 30.17, and the government said the rapid resumption of the economy “may have put upward pressure on wages.” He said he suggested. Average weekly working hours are also rising, indicating that companies are demanding more work from their employees.

“Demand is outstripping supply,” said Daniel Zao, senior economist at the job listing site Glassdoor. “This is happening throughout the economy, from semiconductors to timber, and there is a similar crisis in the labor market.”

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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