April 23, 2020

Rep. Mike Levin Statement on Bipartisan Emergency Coronavirus Relief Bill

Washington, D.C. – Today, U.S. Representative Mike Levin (D-CA) issued the following statement on the latest bipartisan emergency coronavirus relief legislation. Rep. Levin traveled to Washington late Wednesday night to help ensure that the bill passes the House and gets to the President’s desk as quickly as possible.

“To all of the local small business owners and health care workers struggling to confront this crisis, I’m glad to say that more help is on the way. Thanks to bipartisan efforts, this latest relief legislation includes $310 billion for the Paycheck Protection Program and much-needed technical fixes so that mom-and-pop businesses receive aid, not just larger companies with special lending relationships. I have consistently said that we won’t have a healthy economy until we have healthy people, which is why the bill also includes $75 billion for health care providers, $25 billion for testing, and a mandate for the Administration to develop a national testing strategy. That is key to reopening our country safely.

“This bill is an important step, but it’s not nearly enough. We need to pass additional relief legislation as soon as possible with more funding for state and local governments, greater financial assistance for the unemployed, and expanded nutrition assistance for hungry families. We need to develop a national vote-by-mail program, provide a lifeline for the United States Postal Service, and take bold steps to support a long-term economic recovery that puts Americans back to work, including a robust investment in our nation’s infrastructure. Finally, as we continue to celebrate the 50th anniversary of Earth Day, we must recognize the importance of investments in clean energy to create good jobs here at home and protect our planet. We’ll get through this crisis, but we must do more. I’ll continue to fight for these priorities in future relief legislation.”

This latest bipartisan relief package includes $310 billion in additional funding  for the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP), including billions reserved for businesses in underserved communities. It also expands small business support with $50 billion for the Small Business Administration’s (SBA) Economic Injury Disaster Loan program, which will allow for about $300 billion in loans to small businesses, and $10 billion in emergency disaster grants. The bill also includes $75 billion for health care providers to purchase PPE and address lost revenues, and $25 billion to increase testing and contact tracing capabilities. It also requires the Administration to develop a national testing strategy and report testing data to Congress.