December 28, 2020

Shaheen, Hassan Announce NH Expected to Receive an Estimated $2B in COVID Relief

(Washington, DC) – U.S. Senator Jeanne Shaheen (D-NH), a senior member of the Senate Appropriations Committee, and U.S. Senator Maggie Hassan (D-NH) issued the following statements in response to new estimates from the non-partisan Congressional Research Service (CRS) predicting that New Hampshire is expected to receive approximately $2 billion across a variety of sectors from new federal COVID-19 relief included in government funding legislation that was signed into law Sunday night, which Shaheen and Hassan helped negotiate. These estimates do not include all sectors of New Hampshire’s economy that will receive federal relief, which will become available in the days and weeks ahead.

 

The relief legislation also includes language, sponsored by Hassan and supported by Shaheen, extending the period during which state and local governments may use Coronavirus Relief Fund (CRF) aid, allocated under the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act through December 31, 2021.

 

“The CARES Act funding we fought to deliver to New Hampshire was crucial for mitigating the economic impact of COVID-19 in our communities for small businesses, health care providers and many more. But we knew more help would be necessary, which is why bipartisan talks restarted and prevailed, and another set of relief will soon be out the door,” said Senator Shaheen. These estimates are helpful to see what the distribution of funding will look like for New Hampshire so we can make plans now on where to start in the next COVID assistance package that Congress will tackle in the new year. This emergency relief will help Granite Staters and Americans over the next few months, but to ensure our communities have the long-term help necessary to recover and rebuild from this economic crisis, further aid will be needed. Lawmakers on both sides of the aisle and from both chambers of Congress came together to deliver this last package – next month we will get to work to do that again.”

 

“This bipartisan package will bring critically needed and overdue relief to families, small businesses, and schools in every corner of New Hampshire – and it will bring more federal dollars to our state to help contain this pandemic,” Senator Hassan said. “I am also particularly glad that our state is estimated to receive more than $259 million for education needs, which is a priority I spearheaded during bipartisan negotiations. This substantial federal funding to New Hampshire will provide necessary support to help students, parents, and teachers with in-person and remote learning. While more relief will be needed in the coming months in order to save lives and help our economy recover, the federal funding that Senator Shaheen and I secured will go a long way to help families pay their bills and put food on the table. I will also continue pushing for additional resources to help our state and country recover from this unprecedented public health and economic crisis.” 

 

The funding estimates are broken down into several categories, including unemployment insurance and benefits, direct payments, rental assistance, education and more. Below is a summary of estimates according to CRS:

 

Unemployment Insurance

$684,872,533

Average Weekly Unemployment Insurance benefits & Supplemental $300 Federal Assistance

$274.72 & $574.72 per person

Direct Payments

$614,256,000 to 619,033 individuals

Rental Assistance

$200,000,000

Education – funding dispersed through 3 programs addressing K-12 public and private schools & higher education

Governors Emergency Education Relief Fund:$10,974,000

Elementary and Secondary School Emergency Relief Fund (Public K-12 schools): $156,066,000

Higher Education Emergency Relief Fund: $91,992,000

Vaccine Distribution & Administration, Testing, Tracing & COVID Mitigation

Vaccines: $36,029,990

Testing, Tracing & COVID Mitigation: $183,201,902

Child Care Assistance [through the  Child Care and Developmental Block Grant program (CCDBG) under the CARES Act & Additional Funding through new relief]

CCDBG program: $6,999,268 *provided through the CARES Act due to a new flexibility provision

Supplemental in new relief: $19,923,050

Urban Transit Assistance

$293,144,156 * this includes Boston, MA-NH-RI

Rural Transit Assistance

$13,773,396* through CARES Act funding

Highway Funding (through the Surface Transportation Block Grant Program)

$41,041,878

NH Fisheries

$3,000,000

Relief for Airports

$6,849,756

Funeral Benefits

$4,994,000

NOTE: The few CARES Act funding sections above are not included in the $2 billion estimate, which only includes new funding from the new COVID-19 emergency relief.

 

Shaheen and Hassan are members of the bipartisan, bicameral group of lawmakers that met around the clock for the last month to negotiate COVID-19 relief legislation

 

Shaheen once again helped craft the provisions to assist small businesses impacted by the COVID-19 crisis – taking on a similar leadership role that she held as a negotiator for the CARES Act – and also steered negotiations on nutrition assistance, support to address the substance use disorder epidemic, relief for child care centers and she advocated for funds for testing and contact tracing. In her letter to Senate and House leadership outlining her health care priorities for a COVID-19 relief package earlier this year, Shaheen made more funding for testing and contact tracing a top priority.

 

Senator Shaheen negotiated $10 billion in emergency funds for child care businesses through the Child Care and Developmental Block Grant (CCDBG) program. These funds maintain the flexibility given to states through the CARES Act and can be used to provide child care assistance to families and support to child care providers in meeting their increased operating costs during the pandemic. The legislation ensures that states provide assistance to child care providers who have not previously received assistance through CCDBG and provide technical assistance to support child care providers in accessing grant funding. The bill also allows states to expand child care assistance to essential workers and to provide child care payment relief to working families. The bill additionally includes $250 million for Head Start programs across the country to ensure they are able to continue to safely serve low-income children and families throughout the pandemic.

 

Senator Hassan helped lead negotiations on unemployment insurance. The final package extends pandemic unemployment benefits and provide $300 per week in federal supplemental unemployment insurance benefits for 11 weeks. Senator Hassan also led on negotiating the proposal to provide an additional $81.9 billion for K-12 schools and higher education institutions, and $10 billion to support U.S. Postal Service operations.

 

The final COVID relief package also includes bipartisan legislation that Senator Hassan introduced to ensure that Social Security, Veterans Affairs (VA), and Supplemental Security Income (SSI) beneficiaries automatically receive the COVID-19 relief stimulus payments that they are entitled to. Additionally, Senator Hassan worked across the aisle to include her bipartisan bill to allow eligible small employers to both participate in the Paycheck Protection Program and also claim the Employee Retention Tax Credit to help keep workers on payroll and pay for their health care coverage. Currently, small employers cannot participate in both of these programs.

 

###