COVID-19 Assistance

OUTLINE OF COVID-19 BENEFITS, FUNDING, AND RESOURCES 

Per the CARES Act and Families First Act 

Important Information for Workers, Small Businesses, Renters, Students and More

Cash Payments to Americans - Recovery Rebates for Individuals

Unemployment Compensation/Insurance. Bolstering Unemployment Compensation

Non-Cash Assistance/ Relief for Individuals

  • Creating Coronavirus-Related Distributions and Loans from 401(k) Plans and other Defined Contribution Retirement Plans
  • Waiving the 10% Additional Tax on Early Distributions from IRAs, 401(k) Plans and other Defined Contribution Retirement Plans
  • Waiving of Required Minimum Distributions from IRAs, 401(k) Plans and other Defined Contribution Plans
  • Deferring Contributions for Single-Employer Pension Plans

Relief for Upcoming Mortgage, Rent, and Utility Payments

Providing Help to Low-Income Households

  • For homeowners
  • For renters

Higher Education

  • Providing Student Loan Relief
  • Issuing Work-Study payments to students
  • Increasing Student Loan Exclusions and Flexibility

Emergency Leave

  • Mandating Employer-Paid Leave for Workers Affected by the Coronavirus
  • Providing Tax Credits for Employers

Small Business Relief

  • Payroll Protection Program
  • Economic Injury Disaster Loans (EIDL) and Emergency Advances
  • Providing Loan Relief for Businesses with Existing SBA Loans
  • Employee retention tax credit, including advance payments
  • Counseling and Training for Entrepreneurial Development
  • State Trade Expansion Program

Relief for Larger Businesses

  • Providing Loans, Loan Guarantees, and other Investments through the Treasury
  • Stabilization Fund
  • Keeping Airline Workers Paid

Aid to States and Municipalities

  • Creating New Funding for State Responses to COVID-19 (State Stabilization Fund)
  • Aid and flexibility to States for Unemployment Assistance

Disaster Relief

  • Disaster Relief Fund
  • Fire Grants
  • Emergency Preparedness Grants
  • Emergency Food and Shelter

Health and Hospitals (including Medicare, Medicaid, and Coverage Policies)

  • Free COVID-19 Testing
  • Speedier Access to Free Vaccines in Private Insurance
  • Eliminating Medicare Part B Cost-Sharing for the COVID-19 Vaccine
  • Allowing Up to 3-Month Fills and Refills of Covered Medicare Part D Drugs
  • Over-the-Counter Medicines and Menstrual Products Purchased through HSAs/Health FSAs/HRAs
  • Health Savings Accounts for Telehealth Services
  • More money for Community Health Centers
  • Reauthorization of Title VII of the Public Health Service Act
  • Expanding Medicare Telehealth Flexibilities Allowing Federally Qualified Health Centers (FQHCs) and Rural Health Clinics (RHCs) to Furnish Telehealth in Medicare
  • Expanding Medicare Telehealth for Home Dialysis Patients Allowing for the Use of Telehealth during the Hospice Care Recertification Process in Medicare Encouraging the Use of Telecommunications Systems for Home Health Services in Medicare
  • Enabling Physician Assistants and Nurse Practitioners to Order Medicare Home Health Services
  • Increasing Provider Funding through Immediate Medicare Sequester Relief
  • Medicare Add-on for Inpatient Hospital COVID-19 Patients
  • Increasing Medicare Access to Post-Acute Care
  • Preventing Medicare Durable Medical Equipment Payment Reduction
  • Providing Home and Community-based Support Services during Hospital Stays
  • Preventing Medicare Clinical Diagnostic Laboratory Test Payment Reductions
  • Providing Hospitals Medicare Advance Payments
  • Federal Communications Commission (FCC) — Telehealth
  • Clarification of the Strategic National Stockpile

Fisheries Assistance

Important Extensions of Current Programs

Medicare Extenders

  • Extending Physician Work Geographic Index Floor
  • Extending Funding for Quality Measure Endorsement and Selection
  • Extending Funding Outreach and Assistance for Low-Income Programs

Medicaid Extenders

  • Extending Money Follows the Person Demonstration Program
  • Extending of Spousal Impoverishment Protections
  • Delaying Disproportionate Share Hospital Reductions
  • Extending and Expansion of Community Mental Health Services

Human Services Extenders

  •   Extending of Demonstration Projects to Address Health Professions
  •   Workforce Needs
  •   Extending Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF)


Additional Funding for Individuals, Businesses, States, and Localities

Funding Boosts to Federal Programs

  • Agriculture/Nutrition/FDA
  • Commerce
  • Fishermen
  • Manufacturing Extension Partnerships (MEP)
  • Economic Development Administration (EDA)
  • Courts, Prisons, and Law Enforcement
  • Federal Courts
  • Defender Services
  • Bureau of Prison
  • State and Local Law Enforcement Assistance
  • Department of Veterans Affairs Operations
  • Elections
  • Funding to Election Assistance Commission
  • Education and Arts
  • Institute of Museum and Library Services
  • Grants for Emergency Support to Schools
  • Student Aid Administration
  • Grants for the Arts
  • Grants for the Humanities
  • Health and Human Services
  • Health Care Resources
  • Child Care
  • Head Start
  • Housing
  • Housing Providers
  • Community Development Block Grant
  • Homeless Assistance Grants
  • Labor
  • Administrative Funding from the Department of Labor (DOL)
  • Community Services Block Grant (CSBG)
  • Transportation
  • Essential Air Service (EAS)
  • Transit Systems
  • Assistance for Airports
  • USDA
  • ReConnect Loan and Grant Program
  • Distance Learning, Telemedicine and Broadband Program
  • The Emergency Food Assistance Program
  • Child Welfare and Nutrition 

Federal Relief Bills  

To date, Congress has passed three bills to respond to the COVID-19 health and economic crises:

The Coronavirus Preparedness and Response Supplemental Appropriation Act (HR 6074, March 6, 2020) – Provides $8.3B emergency supplemental funds to States to address response. and HHS to address research and development of vaccines and diagnostic tools. To view this bill: https://www.congress.gov/bill/116th-congress/house-bill/6074

The Families First Coronavirus Response Act (HR 6201, March 19, 2020) – Provides free testing, $1B for nutrition assistance, an increase to the federal share of Medicaid, and new paid sick and family leave benefits for workers impacted by COVID-19. To view this bill: https://www.congress.gov/bill/116th-congress/house-bill/6201

The Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security (“CARES”) Act (HR748, March 28, 2020) –Largest rescue package in the history of US, provides loans and grants to businesses, direct cash payments to taxpayers, and significantly increase unemployment benefits, and provides stabilization funding to States and local governments. To view this bill: https://www.congress.gov/bill/116th-congress/senate-bill/3548/text

Paycheck Protection Program and Health Care Enhancement Act (HR266April 24,202) - The bill provides $310 billion to replenish the Small Business Administration’s (SBA) Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) that would allow it to resume lending as soon as Monday. The measure also allocates: (1) $75 billion for hospitals; (2) $25 billion to boost testing capacity; and (3) $60 billion for the SBA’s Economic Injury Disaster Loan (EIDL) program: https://www.congress.gov/bill/116th-congress/house-bill/266?s=2&r=1 

The PPP applications can resume as early as Monday.

IRS Toolkit for Covid-19 Tax Relief

Click here for information for businesses and individuals.

State Actions

The Governor has issued a number of Executive Orders: https://www.flgov.com/2020-executive-orders/

The Governor has not yet signed the budget, awaiting a further assessment of COVID-19 impacts. However, from the CARES Act, the State of Florida will be receiving approximately $12B in relief and response assistance, and Senate President Galvano released a memo last week indicating that in light of the State’s federal assistance allocation and its healthy reserves impacts to the 2020-2021 State budget will be minimized and cuts may not be necessary.