COVID-19 Legislative Updates

The Senate Republican COVID-19 Phase 4 bill – The HEALS Act (Health, Education Assistance, Liability Protections, Schools Act) – is being introduced this afternoon. Several different senators have announced bills intended to address each of those topics. This includes:

  • Senator Cornyn and Leader McConnell have filed the SAFE TO WORK Act, which provides liability protections from COVID liability lawsuits for frontline workers and businesses.
  • SFC CARES 2.0: Senate Finance Committee provisions (information regarding unemployment benefits and direct payments to families)
  • China related provisions, including:
    • A modified version of Senator Graham’s US MADE Act
    • Senator Portman’s Safeguarding American Innovation Act
    • Senator Cornyn’s CHIPS for America Act
    • Senator Murkowski’s American Mineral Security Act
    • Full text of these provisions
    • Section-by-section
  • Continuing Small Business Recovery and Paycheck Protection Program Act introduced by Senator Marco Rubio (Chairman of the Senate Small Business Committee):
  • Senator Mitt Romney's TRUST Act:
    • Background:
      • COVID-19 has had a devastating effect on our country and our economy – that impact will extend to the fiscal health of Medicare and Social Security.
      • If Congress does nothing, these programs will reach insolvency years sooner than expected.
      • The bill establishes temporary bipartisan, bicameral committees specially designed to develop proposals that fix the financial problems surrounding these programs – and to set up a process for Congress vote on them quickly.
    • Full text
    • Section-by-section
    • Summary
  • Senate HELP Committee Chairman Alexander introduced the “Safely Back to School and Back to Work Act”
  • Senate Appropriations Committee Chairman Shelby introduced emergency appropriations to aid American families and businesses suffering from the COVID-19 global pandemic.e

Legislative Actions I Source GovTrack

H.R. 6074: Coronavirus Preparedness and Response Supplemental Appropriations Act, 2020 — Enacted March 4, 2020. Provided $8.3 billion in emergency funding for federal agencies to respond to the coronavirus outbreak related to developing a vaccine, medical supplies, grants for public health agencies, small business loans, and assistance for health systems in other countries. Allowed for temporarily waiving Medicare restrictions and requirements regarding telehealth services.

H.R. 6201: Families First Coronavirus Response Act — Enacted March 18, 2020. Guaranteed free coronavirus testing, established paid leave, enhanced unemployment insurance, expanded food security initiatives, and increased federal Medicaid funding.

H.R. 748: Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act — Enacted March 27, 2020. A $2 trillion coronavirus relief bill, which will send $1,200 to each American making $75,000 a year or less, add $600/week to unemployment benefits for four months, give $100 billion to hospitals and health providers, make $500 billion of loans or investments to businesses, states and municipalities, and $32 billion in grants to the airline industry, and more.

H.R. 266: Paycheck Protection Program and Health Care Enhancement Act — Enacted April 24, 2020. A $484 billion relief bill that went to replenish the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) for small businesses and to public health measures such as virus testing and hospital funding.

coronavirus.skoposlabs.com — Other legislative activities and federal regulations tracked by Skopos Labs

Policy analysis: CRS reports related to COVID-19 (everycrsreport.com), Oversight & Policy Resources (POGO)


Resources:

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