By EDDIE BERNICE JOHNSON
U.S. House of Representatives
We are now more than six months into a global pandemic never before experienced in modern society. Our federal government must step up to support our families and communities through such uncertain turmoil. Additionally, it has now been more than four months since the House of Representatives passed the HEROES Act, a critical $3.4 trillion stimulus package that the Senate has failed to act upon.
Nevertheless, House Democrats and I have continued our fight for such federal relief, and this week, we have released an updated HEROES Act to demonstrate our absolute commitment to negotiating for a final stimulus package. All of our constituents, communities and local municipalities are depending on us to deliver this assistance that is so desperately needed.
We must have another stimulus package, as it is essential to protect the financial security and avert many catastrophes for our schools, local governments, education systems, small businesses, restaurants and regional industries. We must deliver housing assistance, preserve health coverage, ensure worker safety, protect payrolls and much more to keep our American economy afloat amid this global pandemic. We must support public health and invest in the research, development, and distribution of vaccines and treatments to fight this virus that has killed more than 200,000 Americans to this very day.
I am adamant that any forthcoming coronavirus relief bill must address the priorities for my district to help eliminate pain and suffering. This would include emergency funding to resources for affordable housing and homelessness prevention. Any final package must include emergency rental assistance and a national, uniform moratorium to prevent evictions.
If this bill is signed into law:
Some of the proposed legislation would include:
- Strong support for small businesses, by improving the Paycheck Protection Program to serve the smallest businesses and struggling non-profits, providing hard-hit businesses with second loans and delivering targeted assistance for the struggling restaurant industry and independent live venue operators.
- Additional assistance for airline industry workers, extending the highly successful Payroll Support Program to keep airline industry workers paid.
- More funds to bolster education and child care, with $225 billion for education – including $182 billion for K12 schools and nearly $39 billion for postsecondary education – and $57 billion to support child care for families.
Specifically, for state and local governments within the 30th Congressional District:
- Cedar Hill: $11,420,673
- City of Dallas: $465,749,005
- Dallas County: $700,633,318
- DeSoto: $13,989,339
- Duncanville: $9,276,424
- Glenn Heights: $3,122,463
- Hutchins: $1,350,082
- Lancaster: $9,303,054
- Wilmer: $1,123,144
Our teachers, firefighters, health professionals and public servants have been on the front lines throughout this pandemic and have made tremendous sacrifices. Their tireless work demands that our Congress responds with the assistance so desperately needed throughout our nation. It is my hope that the Senate will take up this timely legislation. To those wishing to voice their support of the bill please write, call or email your senators.
U.S. Representative Eddie Bernice Johnson is the ranking member of the House Committee on Science, Space and Technology and the highest-ranking Texan on the House Committee on Transportation & Infrastructure. She represents the 30th Congressional District of Texas.