New payment could reach LESS Americans as income cap could be lowered
If a fourth stimulus check payment were to be approved by Congress, federal aid could be sent to far fewer Americas than before, experts warn.
More than 80 Democratic lawmakers are asking for additional stimulus funds, but so far President Joe Biden has not announced any plans for a fourth round of payments.
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But if a payment similar to checks for $ 1,400 as part of its US bailout is approved, experts recommend that the government focus only on the poorest Americans.
“If Congress wanted to further reduce poverty or provide additional resources more broadly, the additional payments could do so,” said a Tax Policy Center report.
“We modeled two options for additional payments of $ 1,400. One of them would start to disappear at lower income levels, which is what we call the faster move bonus.
“This payment would provide targeted assistance to people with slightly lower incomes and would include everyone, rather than just citizens.”
As part of the plan, experts say the funds would be phased out, meaning Americans would receive different payments based on their income.
This policy was used as part of Biden’s $ 1.9 trillion US bailout.
However, if a fourth check were approved, the eligibility limit would likely be below the $ 75,000 threshold of the last round.
“The other payment option we modeled would replicate ARP payment thresholds and limit citizen eligibility,” the Tax Policy Center report said.
“As long as payments start to be phased out above the poverty line, they will have a strong anti-poverty effect.”
Analysis by the Urban Institute (UI) also highlights how African American and Latin American communities would be the biggest benefactors of another round of federal aid.
“We estimate that a single additional payment could reduce poverty in 2021 from 13.7% to between 6.4 and 6.6%, depending on whether the payment is accessible to everyone in the United States or limited to citizens,” writes the group.
This payment would help lift 6.6 million people out of poverty, according to the group’s plans.
If a fifth round was also approved, UI said poverty could be reduced at rates between 4.9% and 5.2%, depending on the eligibility factors for that payment.
So far, it appears Biden has no intention of approving any further stimulus payments as he seeks to reduce poverty with his infrastructure and family plans.
However, the chorus of voices calling for additional direct payments continues to grow.
Almost 2.25 million people have now signed a online petition launched by an unemployed restaurant owner in Denver, calling for new stimulus checks of $ 2,000 for adults and $ 1,000 for children.
These would be followed by regular checks throughout the duration of the pandemic.
More than 80 members of Congress have signed letters urging President Biden to support recurring payments until the pandemic is over.
And while many Americans would undoubtedly benefit from additional financial support, the evidence suggests that the worst days of the pandemic are behind us – rendering another round of checks unnecessary.
Last week, the government confirmed that the U.S. economy grew at a high annual rate of 6.4% in January, February and March.
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While unemployment remains high, with nearly 10 million unemployed, new jobless claims recently hit their lowest level since the start of the COVID crisis.
Biden’s party also controls Congress with very narrow margins, meaning any legislation would prove difficult to pass.
Republicans and even some moderate Democrats have been extremely critical of Biden’s spending plans, especially after he unveiled a $ 6 trillion spending plan for next year on Friday.