Breaking down the latest federal Covid-19 relief plan
Posted on August 10, 2020 by Bonnie Lee
The President on August 8 signed four executive actions providing additional COVID-19 relief.
According to Spidell Publishing, an educational resource for tax professionals, the three memorandums and one executive order do the following:
- Direct the Secretary of the Treasury to use his authority to defer the withholding, deposit, and payment of the employee’s portion of Social Security taxes paid from September 1, 2020, through December 31, 2020. The deferral will be available to any employee whose wages are generally less than $104,000 per year;
- Authorize an additional $44 billion from the Department of Homeland Security’s Disaster Relief Fund to assist states to continue to pay expanded unemployment benefits of up to $400 per week, with the federal government paying $300 and states paying up to $100. States are called upon to use amounts allocated to them out of the Coronavirus Relief fund to pay their $100 share of the expanded unemployment benefits. Each state will manage this individually, so at this time it is unclear how each state will handle it;
- Provide for the continued temporary cessation of student loan payments and a waiver of all interest on student loans held by the Department of Education until December 31, 2020; and
- Direct various administrative agencies to take all lawful measures to prevent residential evictions and foreclosures resulting from the COVID-19 pandemic. The order does not contain any specifics for these directives.
The President may not have the authority to enforce the above actions. I will keep you posted if things change.
According to accounting.com, Trump also ordered continued eviction protection and student-loan relief.
The moves could jeopardize negotiations with congressional Democrats over an additional coronavirus relief package, with the two sides trillions of dollars apart on key issues, including aid to state governments and the amount of supplementary unemployment benefits. The president, though, said he’d continue to negotiate with Democrats — who said Saturday’s measures “provide little real help to families.”
The text of the memorandums and order can be found at: www.whitehouse.gov/news
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