President Donald Trump signed the COVID-19 Economic Relief and government spending Bill, averting a government shutdown and providing financial assistance to millions of Americans devastated by the pandemic.
Trump signed the $2.3 trillion bill into law Sunday night, days after suggesting amendments to steeply hike stimulus payments.
The House and Senate passed the coronavirus relief bill along with legislation to fund the government through the end of September, with an overwhelming and bipartisan majority last week.
A one-off $600 direct stimulus payment to most Americans was one of the main highlights of the deal that a deeply divided Congress agreed to after months of talks.
He wanted that amount to be increased to $2,000, but Republican lawmakers were against it.
Trump’s decision to sign the bill averted far-reaching consequences. Hadn’t he signed the legislation, about 10 million Americans would have lost unemployment insurance benefits.
By Tuesday night, government funding would have expired, putting vital services and paychecks for military personnel at risk. If Trump vetoed the Bill, the government could have partially shut down because it included a $1.4 trillion spending measure to fund federal agencies for the next nine months.
Enhanced unemployment benefits, support for businesses, and direct stimulus payments are the main highlights of the Bill.
Other main features of the Bill are $82 billion in aid for K-12 schools and colleges, $20 billion for the purchase and distribution of COVID-19 vaccines, and $25 billion in rental assistance for individuals who lost job.
The Bill comes as a short-term relief to millions of Americans economically and physically devastated by the pandemic.
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