More stimulus payments are-- and that includes the " " for those who are . But with most of the out, Congress is looking ahead for ways to help struggling people by sending out more money between this year and next. One idea that's surfaced is a fourth stimulus check that would send more checks to those most in need, once the are complete.
In March, a group of 10 progressive senators, including Elizabeth Warren and Bernie Sanders, asked President Joe Biden to include regular stimulus payments (PDF) in his next stimulus bill: "We urge you to include recurring direct payments and automatic unemployment insurance extensions tied to economic conditions in your Build Back Better long-term economic plan." A few weeks later, another group of 21 Democrats made a similar request to Biden.
The current stimulus check will help the economy to grow rapidly, yet unevenly, economists say, with some cities projected to hurt for "decades," even with on the upswing and the US economy showing glimmers of hope. Would more direct payments arrive , as something other than a " "? We spell out some possibilities below. If you're , here's and here's how to . Also here's how to . This story is frequently updated.
The next economic relief bill is in the works. Will it contain a fourth check?
(Note: There's some debate over what counts as a "relief," "rescue" or "stimulus" package. For the purpose of this article, "stimulus" refers to any funding, check or measure in response to the coronavirus pandemic or to inject money into the US economy.)
The new 'stimulus payment' could take a different form
The American Rescue Plan. It contains three checks designed to help struggling individuals and families. It's possible a future bill could extend or introduce more money through direct checks that go to specific groups of recipients, including parents who earn below a certain income or people out of work.
Here are the three types of direct checks approved in the March 2021 bill:
- Stimulus checks: The new one-time send up to to those .
- Child tax credit: An expansion of the sends qualifying families $3,600 for each child under age 6 and $3,000 for children age 6 or older, in .
- Federal unemployment bonus: A monthly is being sent until Sept. 6 at up to $300 a month, in addition to state benefits for unemployed workers.
Additional ways Congress could send a direct payment later this year
Approve recurring payments: Biden's infrastructure bill is the next likely place for Congress to provide more funding. This is where Democratic Senators are calling on Biden to push for recurring stimulus checks during the pandemic.
Pass a minimum wage hike: Senators continue to look for ways to Sens. Mitt Romney and Kyrsten Sinema are the latest to pitch a hike. Some proponents want to set the bar at a $15 hourly wage but others are looking to go to $11 an hour. "If any senator believes this is the last time they will cast a vote on whether or not to give a raise to 32 million Americans, they are sorely mistaken," Sanders tweeted on March 5. A February report from the Brookings Institute models how a $15 minimum wage could help make 37% of US households financially self-sufficient., which currently stands at $7.25 per hour.
Make the child tax credit raise permanent: Money from the expandedAccording to White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki, Biden wants to make the child tax credit permanent. Others, including Republican Sen. Mitt Romney, also support making the credit permanent since it will lift millions of children in the US out of poverty.is set to start in July, sending periodic payments to lower-income and middle-income families with children.
Renew federal unemployment payments beyond September: Along with recurring payments, the 10 Democratic senators in their letter to Biden requested he also extend federal unemployment assistance beyond September.
Here are, how much money you could expect in and how to .