On Thursday, March 11, President Biden signed the COVID-19 relief package into law. The legislation grants $1,400 direct payments to individuals making less than $75,000 and $2,800 to married couples making less than $150,000 annually. Individuals making up to $80,000 and married couples making up to $160,000 annually will get some money but not the full amount. It also provides $300 a week in enhanced unemployment benefits through September 6, 2021, and allocates $25 billion for rental assistance.
Further, the legislation provides $14 billion to distribute vaccines and $49 billion for COVID-19 testing, tracing and personal protective equipment.
The law also expands the annual child tax credit to $3,600 for children up to age 5 and $3,000 for children ages 6 to 17. It provides $125 billion for K-12 schools and nearly $40 billion for higher education, along with $39 billion for childcare grants.
In addition, the legislation includes changes to the Affordable Care Act, including temporarily expanding subsidies to purchase insurance and making them available to people of all parties for the first time.
The provision to raise the minimum wage to $15 an hour did not make it to the final version of the legislation.