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Politics Dollar demands are an unnecessary barrier to more COVID-19 relief

13:45  24 september  2020
13:45  24 september  2020 Source:   washingtonexaminer.com

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Six months ago, demand in the US plunged and many supply chains with China were disrupted. The potential for Covid - 19 to wreak further economic damage was brought into sharp focus as the UK announced further This has driven the US dollar to its highest level in two months today, as fears

If you lose your job (including self-employment) from 1 March 2020 to 30 October 2020 due to COVID - 19 , you may be eligible for the COVID - 19 Income Relief Payment. It’s available from 8 June 2020.

Those leading negotiations on another COVID-19 relief bill have been sniping at each other for months now, and there is no end in sight.

Steven Mnuchin, Mark Meadows standing in front of a building © Provided by Washington Examiner

One of the largest obstacles to another bill, and to more prudent policymaking in general, is the negotiators’ obsession with the top-line dollar amount of spending. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi recently reminded reporters that she offered to cut $1 trillion from the House-passed HEROES Act (a $3.4-trillion bill) if Republicans would come up from around $1 trillion in the Senate-introduced HEALS Act to a $2.4 trillion top line.

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COVID - 19 could affect the global economy in three main ways: by directly affecting production, by creating supply chain and market disruption, and by its financial impact on firms and financial markets. However, a great deal depends on the public’s reaction to the disease.

Covid - 19 restrictions on care homes could mean the elderly don't see their family for a year, a Most care homes in the UK were given the green light to open again in the summer, after the outbreak She added: 'I can't believe they didn't envisage that there would be an increase in demand for tests and

Amid the ongoing stalemate, White House chief of staff Mark Meadows told reporters earlier in August, “There are no top-line numbers that have been agreed to. We continue to be trillions of dollars apart.” Other Democrats have followed Pelosi's lead, and the Senate has failed to break the filibuster to advance Republican efforts.

What reporters and stakeholders haven’t heard much about is an ongoing debate over the pros and cons of certain provisions that would be included in a relief bill. These debates have cropped up occasionally over the past several months; for example, when Senate Republicans introduced the HEALS Act or when President Trump sought to act unilaterally on unemployment insurance.

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The COVID - 19 pandemic is a major shock to the global and European economy. Already today, a substantial negative economic impact on Europe has materialised, at least The COVID - 19 outbreak is also having a major impact on our transport systems. The European supply chains are closely linked.

It also called for more financial benefits for those threatened with eviction over unpaid bills. Schumer and Pelosi addressed the potential of executive orders on Friday Over 160,000 US citizens have died from Covid - 19 and many industries remain closed due to the pandemic and various state lockdowns.

Those in charge of the COVID-19 relief negotiations are focused almost solely on whether the bill will be $1 trillion, or $3.4 trillion, or $2.4 trillion, or, now, $2.2 trillion. This focus on the top line distracts from conversations that should actually matter to taxpayers: how emergency dollars will be spent and how effective these programs are and will continue to be in serving those hit hardest by the pandemic.

To be clear, the top-line figure does matter. The nation is over $26 trillion in debt and will likely run a deficit exceeding $3 trillion this fiscal year alone. While a federal response to COVID-19 has certainly been necessary, lawmakers must continue to handle taxpayer dollars with care and caution so as not to saddle the public with more debt.

The obsession with a dollar number — for example, Pelosi’s insistence that negotiators have nothing to talk about until Republicans agree to a bill that costs more than $2 trillion — is a grand disservice to not only taxpayers but to all people who are suffering from the virus, from lost income, or from lost health coverage. This backward way of lawmaking leads politicians to make spending decisions that are detached from their effects and, as a result, it leads to less fiscal space to address pressing needs like those created by the pandemic.

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Australia’s second-largest city is now subjected to some of the most extraordinary Covid - 19 lockdown measures on the planet, and all over an additional This is an astonishing violation of civil liberties. Police officers should not be allowed to demand entry to a property without cause or due process.

There is no doubt that federal and state governments will continue to marshal resources to fight COVID-19, from processing new unemployment claims to supporting public health countermeasures. It’s hard to envision a scenario where political bickering over a top-line dollar number rings more hollow to the tens of millions of people dealing with the economic fallout from the pandemic. Lawmakers have a duty to help the people hurt by the virus and associated lockdowns, and negotiators have gone nowhere for over a month as they talk about what arbitrary dollar figure will allow them to score cheap political points.

Instead, lawmakers should focus on relief that is temporary and targeted for the workers, businesses, and families most impacted by the crisis while ensuring that economic recovery efforts are broad and do not benefit one industry or interest over others. All of these efforts should come with prudent guardrails to ensure that taxpayer dollars don’t go to unrelated or unproductive causes that have little to do with the pandemic or economic downturn.

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If you need more help to pay your VAT, you may be eligible to get support with your tax affairs through HMRC’s Time To Pay (TTP) service. Information about deferring VAT payments because of coronavirus ( COVID - 19 ) has been updated to clarify that import VAT payments are not included.

There is much talk of a second wave of coronavirus in Europe. But what does the data tell us? Countries across Europe are seeing a resurgence in COVID - 19 cases after successfully slowing France, Poland, the Netherlands and Spain are likely dealing with the much -feared second wave and

What does all this mean in practice? Congress could consider extending the federal unemployment insurance boost, especially given the recent confusion over the president’s executive order, but such an extension should be temporary and at a lower level than $600 per week. Both sides of the current negotiations have expressed some flexibility on a short-term extension at a lower level.

Also, state and local government aid should be specifically tailored to immediate fiscal needs, rather than a $1 trillion bailout that is way more than even governors are asking for. In addition, any changes to the tax code should be broad and targeted at economic growth, such as full and immediate expensing or neutral cost recovery for structures, rather than a credit or break that favors a particular type of business or activity.

Congressional negotiators would better serve taxpayers by talking about these distinct issues and others, both in private and to the public, rather than just a top-line spending number. Once there are some compromises and settlements on these matters, stakeholders will have a better sense of the range of top lines being discussed. While the total spending number matters considerably, especially in an era of record debt and deficits, it shouldn’t be the only focus in COVID-19 relief talks.

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Andrew Lautz is a policy and government affairs manager with the National Taxpayers Union, a nonprofit group dedicated to advocating for taxpayer interests at all levels of government.

Tags: Opinion, Beltway Confidential, Blog Contributors, Spending, Deficit, Coronavirus, Stimulus, debt, Nancy Pelosi, Chuck Schumer, Mark Meadows

Original Author: Andrew Lautz

Original Location: Dollar demands are an unnecessary barrier to more COVID-19 relief

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