Coronavirus response: Trump administration wants to send $500 billion in payments to Americans in two rounds

President Donald J. Trump speaks with his coronavirus task force in response to the COVID-19 coronavirus pandemic during a briefing in the James S. Brady Press Briefing Room at the White House on Tuesday, March 17, 2020 in Washington, DC.

Jabin Botsford | The Washington Post | Getty Images

The Trump administration’s proposed stimulus package to combat economic fallout from the coronavirus pandemic will include two rounds of direct payments to taxpayers totaling $500 billion, according to a document obtained by NBC.

The White House hopes to send out its first round of checks on April 6, and the second on May 18. It will base payments on income level and family size, according to the document.

Beyond direct payments, the government is looking to set aside $50 billion for the ailing airline industry, as well as $150 billion for “other distressed sectors.” It was not immediately clear which industries would be covered, but the tourism and hotel industries are among those that have also asked the government for relief.

The administration is also looking to roll out a business interruption loan program of $300 billion to aid smaller companies that have had to temporarily shut their doors, or otherwise curtail commerce during the pandemic. 

The administration is hoping to push out a stimulus package that could top $1 trillion as soon as this week. First it must be approved by Congress. 

Late Wednesday afternoon, the Senate passed a bill drafted in the House that expands paid leave and unemployment benefits in response to the coronavirus pandemic. 

The COVID-19 virus, which is believed to have originated in the Chinese city of Wuhan, has quickly spread to dozens of countries globally. There are more than 201,000 confirmed cases worldwide and at least 8,007 deaths so far, according to data from Johns Hopkins University.

There are at least 6,496 cases in the United States and at least 114 deaths, according to Johns Hopkins.

Leave a Reply