Governor, Mayor say NY being shorted federal stimulus money

Posted: 6:24 PM, Mar 26, 2020
Updated: 2020-03-26 18:24:56-04

NEW YORK — Gov. Andrew Cuomo says eventually he’s going to give federal lawmakers a piece of his mind.

He says the approximately $3.1 million New York State should get under the federal stimulus relief plan passed by the senate last night isn’t enough. In fact, the governor calls it “terrible” for New York since the state has about half the 75,000 COVID-19 virus cases in the United States.

New York City has more than 21,000 cases. So, Mayor Bill de Blasio tweeted is dismay that the city is only getting about a billion dollars in federal funds when it’s the center of the health emergency.

The bill, passed unanimously in the senate, still needs the ok of the House of Representatives. The House likely will vote Friday.

Meanwhile, the impact of the virus is hitting healthy people, too. Unemployment is soaring. Numbers released Thursday show that 3.3 million people filed for unemployment benefits last week, That’s more than four times the previous weekly record set in 1982.

The federal stimulus provides some relief for the unemployed. It includes an extra 13 weeks of benefits plus an extra $600 per week for four months. Each state sets its own benefits scale. With the federal addition, New York’s maximum payout would be $1,104 a week, New Jersey’s would be $1,296.

The government will also be sending checks to help Americans, $1,200 one-time payments for individuals making up to $75,000 a year in adjusted gross income and married couples making up to $150,000. Payments will be phased out above those levels by $5.00 per $100 of income. So, people with adjusted gross incomes above $99,000 and married couples making twice that get nothing.

The payments are based on adjusted gross income for 2018 or 2019 for people who already have filed that return.

When can you expect to see a check? Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin says he’s like to get them out in about three weeks. That’s for those filing electronically with direct deposit.

Otherwise, the wait could be much longer.

The stimulus provides about $500 billion in loans for business, cities and states. There’s also $377 billion in loans for small business with provisions for some forgiveness. Federal student loan payments are waived for two months. And automatic payments are suspended until the end of September.

Other provisions of the stimulus plan:

  • $100 billion for hospitals
  • $58 billion for struggling airlines
  • $425 million for mental health and substance abuse
  • $400 million to protect voting systems