WASHINGTON, D.C. – U.S Senator Shelley Moore Capito (R-W.Va.) tonight voted to pass the third coronavirus relief package. Senator Capito released the below statement following her vote:
“I said from the very beginning that we needed to put partisan politics aside because this is not a partisan issue. This is not about Republican or Democrat. This is about an American response. After days of seemingly forgetting that, the Senate was finally able to come together and reach an agreement to deliver care to those who need it most right now. To be clear: this package is almost identical to the package we started with on a few days ago, and the changes that were made likely would have been made even if we had invoked cloture a few days ago. While we should have done this days ago, I am glad the Senate has passed this critical legislation.
“West Virginians want to make sure our hospitals, health care professionals, patients, working families, small businesses, and local governments have the resources they need to handle the effects of this pandemic. This is exactly what this relief package does. For starters, we’re helping those on the front lines purchase masks, gloves, and other personal protective equipment (PPE). By focusing on those battling the disease day in and day out, we’re hopeful we can slow the spread so hospitals and other care facilities feel less overwhelmed. We’re addressing the needs of small businesses not only by giving them loans they need to stay afloat, but also incentivizing them to keep people on their payrolls. We’re looking after the workers who might have gotten laid off or their hours cut with individual payments to pay their rent and groceries. We’re listening to our state and local governments, giving them block grants so they can use these additional funds to meet the unique challenges in their communities. West Virginians and Americans across the country desperately need this relief, and I am glad that the Senate was able to put partisanship aside and come together and take bold action.”
Senator Capito launched a page on her website to help bring current and accurate information to West Virginians during the COVID-19 pandemic. ClickHERE to access the webpage for the latest updates and resources.
Yesterday on the Senate floor, Senator Capito urged her colleagues to put partisanship aside and pass this legislation. Click here to watch the full speech.
CARES ACT HIGHLIGHTS:
- Directs financial relief to middle-class families, with payments of $1,200 for individuals earning up to $75,000 per year or $2,400 per couple earning up to $150,000 per year plus $500 per child.
- Provides $350 billion in loans for small businesses to make payroll and pay rent and other bills. Portions of the loans spent on salary and certain other expenses can be forgiven.
- Additional 13 weeks of unemployment for workers laid off due to the current economic crisis, and an additional $600 unemployment benefit for four months.
- Makes significant loan funding and financial assistance available to industries of national importance, to maintain these industries and retain workers.
- Includes $100 billion for hospitals, community health centers, and other medical providers to address COVID related expenses and increase capacity.
- $20 billion for veterans’ health care programs.
- $16 billion for the Strategic National Stockpile to purchase more protective equipment, respirators, and other vital items.
- $45 billion for FEMA’s Disaster Recovery Fund along with increasing funds for FEMA grants that benefit local West Virginia localities and first responders, through Senator Capito’s chairmanship of the Homeland Security Appropriations Subcommittee.
- $11 billion for vaccines, therapeutics, diagnostics, and other medical needs.
- $8.8 billion for child nutrition programs, nearly $16 billion for SNAP, and $450 million for food banks.
- $150 billion to help cover COVID expenditures of state and local governments, $1.25 billion of which will be allocated to West Virginia.
- $1.5 billion for Economic Development Administration (EDA) grants and $5 billion for Community Development Block Grants to states and communities.
- $10 billion for airports through the Airport Improvement Program.
- Tens of millions of dollars to improve connectivity for students, businesses and workers through the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA), the Federal Communications Commission (FCC), and the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA).
- Ensures Community Health Centers and Rural Health Clinics can provide telehealth services for to Medicare beneficiaries in their home during the COVID-19 emergency period.
- Pauses payments on federally owned student loans for 6 months without interest or penalties.
- Includes the Protecting Jessica Grubb's Legacy Act, introduced by Senators Capito and Manchin that would ensure that all members of a patient’s treatment team have access to the patient’s substance use treatment records, which would ultimately help us improve care coordination and reduce overdose deaths.