Those hoping for a holiday miracle from the federal government in the form of a coronavirus stimulus check should be prepared to be disappointed. Last night a bipartisan group introduced a COVID relief package that had the backing of 12 United States Senators including Louisiana Senator Bill Cassidy was unveiled.

A quick overview of the legislation suggests that the package, which comes with a price tag of $748 billion dollars, does not come with stimulus checks attached. Many had hoped for a repeat of the $1,200 in federal stimulus money that was distributed to Americans earlier in the pandemic. But this legislation does not call for that kind of assistance at all.

Instead, the heart of the legislation seems to focus on more Paycheck Protection Program loans for businesses and a $300 federal addition to state funded unemployment benefits. There is also an option to include an additional $160 billion dollars in funding for state and local governments.

Louisiana Senator Cassidy spoke with the Louisiana Radio Network concerning the legislation, specifically the $160 billion in relief for businesses.

There’s 160 billion dollars that will be unleashed if we can find an agreement on liability

Should lawmakers be able to come to terms on that additional assistance the money would be allocated to local governments based on size. The money would not be allowed to be used to pay down pension funds.

The legislation is now in the hands of lawmakers. There has been no specific timetable mentioned as to when this particular COVID-relief package might be debated in Congress. If it's going to happen before Christmas, they better get to talking because we all know the hired hands we elected to represent us will be "out of the office" in the next few days.

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