This week at CBPP, we focused on state budgets and taxes, food assistance, the federal budget, health, and the economy.
How Much Would Each State Receive Through the Coronavirus State Fiscal Relief Fund in the Heroes Act?
State revenues have plummeted due to COVID-19. On May 15, the House of Representatives passed economic stimulus legislation — known as the Heroes Act — that includes significant new resources to help states avoid mass layoffs of teachers, health care workers, first responders, and others, as well as desperately needed fiscal relief for tribes and U.S. territories.
In our new series of brief videos, SNAP (food stamp) participants, policy experts, and others describe how SNAP helps Americans weather crises — including the current health and economic crisis — by supporting workers and those temporarily unemployed, boosting the economy, helping families put food on the table, and
It would be unwise and self-defeating to let debt concerns deter policymakers from taking needed steps to fight hardship and to bolster and then revive the economy.
SNAP (food stamps) responds quickly to increased need, such as during economic downturns and natural disasters, and the economic crisis spurred by COVID-19 is no exception. Indeed, the rise in the number of SNAP participants in recent weeks is unprecedented, with 2 million (14 percent) more people accessing benefits between February and April in the 17 states that have posted such data.
As economic projections worsen, so do the likely state budget shortfalls from COVID-19’s economic fallout. We now project shortfalls of $765 billion over three years, based on the new projections from the Congressional Budget Office (CBO) of yesterday and Goldman Sachs of last week.
"People of color are experiencing disproportionately more infections and hospitalizations with people of color also overrepresented in jobs that are at higher infection risk now and in the jobs hardest hit economically."
Congress should take steps to help as many people as possible access marketplace plans at this critical time.
The Heroes Act, which the House passed May 15, includes an important SNAP (food stamp) benefit increase that would help families put food on the table when many are struggling and provide stimulus for the economy when it’s most needed. We urge the Senate to quickly approve this SNAP boost.
This week at CBPP, we focused on the economy, state budgets and taxes, health, food assistance, housing, federal taxes, family income support, and Social Security.
The “wait and see” approach that Senator John Thune and some other Republicans recommend for providing more state and local fiscal relief is highly unwise. States and localities furloughed or laid off nearly a million workers last month, new data indicate, and reports of more furloughs this month are widespread.
Sixty-six years after the Supreme Court’s Brown v. Board of Education decision found racial segregation in schools unconstitutional, COVID-19 is presenting new challenges to families and education advocates who are still fighting to ensure that states uphold their education funding obligations.
One of the best tools to protect access to urgently needed behavioral health care, including mental health and substance use services, is to raise the federal share of Medicaid costs (or “FMAP”). House Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s new economic relief bill would do that by building on the modest, shorter-term FMAP increases that policymakers provided in the Families First Coronavirus Response Act of March.
To help prevent cuts to home- and community-based services (HCBS), policymakers should substantially raise the federal government’s share of state Medicaid costs (the “FMAP”), as House Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s new economic relief proposal would do. The bill also includes an important, targeted FMAP increase for HCBS, and both policies are needed to ensure that seniors and people with disabilities can access these services.
In response to the COVID-19 public health and economic crises, the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act included three expansions of unemployment insurance (UI) benefits:
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s coronavirus relief bill provides a much-needed Medicaid funding boost to help states preserve health coverage and address massive state budget shortfalls stemming from the public health and economic crises.
States received a temporary increase in federal Medicaid funding in the Families First Coronavirus Response Act. In exchange, they can’t impose new Medicaid eligibility restrictions or take away people’s coverage during the public health emergency — requirements referred to as “maintenance of effort” (MOE) protections.
Absent the COVID-19 pandemic, the near-term outlook for the Social Security trust funds would have changed very little in the past year.
The health risks and hardship due to rapidly rising food insecurity during the pandemic and economic crisis, which we discussed here, are falling disproportionately on people of color and people with low incomes.