More stimulus checks are going out to Americans despite there being no Congressional action to send direct aid payments to those hurting from the coronavirus pandemic. Many states across the U.S. are issuing a fourth round of stimulus checks to entire populations, or specific groups who were hard hit from the pandemic.
The latest round of stimulus payments not issued by Congress are going to people who worked on farms, in grocery stores, and meatpacking facilities during the pandemic. Those payments will be worth $600, according to a recent announcement from the U.S. Department of Agriculture.
The one-time payments of up to $600 are going to “defray costs for reasonable and necessary personal, family, or living expenses related to the COVID-19 pandemic, such as costs for personal protective equipment (PPE), dependent care, and expenses associated with quarantines and testing related to the COVID-19 pandemic.”
Specific details of the program have not yet been released, but payments for eligible workers are expected to begin rolling out in the coming weeks.
Who else is getting a fourth stimulus check?
A number of states have been rolling out their own form of relief as Congress remains skeptical of a fourth stimulus check.
Here are the states that have established direct aid programs:
California residents are getting true stimulus checks due to a state budget surplus. They have been sending out checks of $500 to $600 for people who make between $30,000 and $75,000 per year. They are paying an additional $500 to families with children.
Colorado residents are getting $375 if they received one unemployment cehck between March 15, 2020 and October 24, 2020.
Maryland passed legislation clearing the way for the state and local taxes to be paused on unemployment benefits. They included a pair of immediate stimulus payments of $500 and $300 for those with and without children respectively.
New Mexico has set aside $5 million for those who didn’t qualify for federal stimulus checks.
New York has a similar program with $2.1 billion from federal funds for undocumented workers. A recent report found that more than 90,000 of those workers who applied qualified for the maximum $15,200 amount — creating doubt about the long-term sustainability of it. It’s likely the state will have to come up with another $1 billion to support the fund to its completion.
Florida residents received $1,000 if they were teachers or administrators. Some educators were left out of the program.
Georgia residents who are teachers are receiving $1,000 in stimulus checks if they are full-time employees. If they are part-time employees the total is $500.
Tennessee teachers are getting a hazard pay stimulus, which totals $1,000 per eligible worker.
Other states have discussed retention bonuses for those who have worked through the pandemic. However, many of those are ambiguous and not yet final.
What about those $2,000 monthly stimulus checks?
The petition calling for $2,000 monthly stimulus for individuals and $1,000 for children keep gaining signatures. But it hasn’t gained too much political support – even among Democrats. While there has been plenty of attention on the proposal — it has only gained enough support to warrant discussion from a handful of members of Congress.