WASHINGTON — Senate Republicans are now pushing what is being called the Health, Economic Assistance, Liability Protection, and Schools Act, better know as the HEALS Act.
It’s a version of what could be a third coronavirus relief package being considered by lawmakers.
The bill would include another round of stimulus checks to the tune of about $1,200 to every American who qualifies. It would also expand the Paycheck Protection Program by simplifying the forgiveness process for smaller loans, and expands PPP eligibility to certain 501(c)(6) organizations.
Those are provisions that were pushed by Indiana Sen. Todd Young in his RESTART Act.
“I’m pleased that the HEALS Act contains critical measures to protect jobs, schools, and health care,” Young said. “Including several provisions I have been championing, such as unemployment insurance system reform, financial assistance to help child care providers reopen, and telehealth legislation that will lead to greater affordability and access.”
Another big piece of the bill that has been a sticking point for Republicans is liability protections for businesses and schools. Liability protections under the HEALS Act would limit ones ability to sue a healthcare provider, business, or school if they feel that is where they contracted coronavirus.
Congressional Democrats have been opposed to this idea and will likely be one of many snags that could keep this bill from advancing.
“I’ll continue working with my colleagues to improve upon this proposal and ensure we are caring for those who have suffered the most through no fault of their own,” Young added.
Young said the HEALS Act is only the beginning offer from Senate Republicans as they begin the process of trying to reconcile with House Democrats who passed the CARES Act over a month ago. Young is confident most, if not, all of his RESTART Act will be included in a final bipartisan version of the bill.