Washington, DC—President Biden signed the “American Rescue Plan Act of 2021,” (H.R. 1319) into law today, which provides additional relief to address the continued impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on the economy, public health, State and local governments, individuals, and businesses.
The House bill was first introduced on February 24, passed the House on February 27, passed the Senate with a revision on March 6, and returned to the House for a vote on March 10.
The bill provides funding for
- agriculture and nutrition programs, including the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP, formerly known as the food stamp program);
- schools and institutions of higher education;
- child care and programs for older Americans and their families;
- COVID-19 vaccinations, testing, treatment, and prevention;
- mental health and substance-use disorder services;
- emergency rental assistance, homeowner assistance, and other housing programs;
- payments to state, local, tribal, and territorial governments for economic relief;
- multiemployer pension plans;
- small business assistance, including specific programs for restaurants and live venues;
- programs for health care workers, transportation workers, federal employees, veterans, and other targeted populations;
- international and humanitarian responses;
- tribal government services;
- scientific research and development;
- state, territorial, and tribal capital projects that enable work, education, and health monitoring in response to COVID-19; and
- health care providers in rural areas.
The bill also includes provisions that
- extend unemployment benefits and related services;
- make up to $10,200 of 2020 unemployment compensation tax-free;
- make student loan forgiveness tax-free through 2025;
- provide a maximum recovery rebate of $1,400 per eligible individual;
- expand and otherwise modify certain tax credits, including the child tax credit and the earned income tax credit;
- provide premium assistance for certain health insurance coverage; and
- require coverage, without cost-sharing, of COVID-19 vaccines and treatment under Medicaid and the Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP).