WHAT SENATOR BENNET IS FIGHTING FOR IN CONGRESS

U.S. Senator Michael Bennet is championing several key proposals to support workers and families facing the hardships of the coronavirus pandemic. His top priorities include extending expanded unemployment benefits and providing other support to struggling families; providing lasting support to the hardest-hit small businesses with the RESTART Act; funding state, local, and tribal governments so they can maintain critical services; and creating a Health Force to support public health professionals and help contain the pandemic. 

More details on his priorities for Colorado are available HERE and below.

  • Supporting workers and families
    • Unemployment Insurance: Bennet introduced the Worker Relief and Security Act to extend expanded unemployment benefits for workers who have lost their jobs, and tie the benefits to economic conditions so the added weekly benefit continues until the economy recovers and gradually decrease as unemployment rates decline.
    • Food Assistance: Bennet introduced a plan in April to increase SNAP benefits by 15%, cut red tape, and tie the benefit to economic conditions.
    • Rent Relief: Bennet introduced the Emergency Rental Assistance and Rental Market Stabilization Act of 2020 to provide $100 billion in emergency rental assistance to help prevent evictions.
    • Child Tax Credit (CTC) & Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC): Bennet called for a temporary expansion of the CTC and EITC to provide additional support for the most vulnerable families and workers.
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  • Supporting our hardest-hit small businesses and nonprofits
    • RESTART Act: Bennet introduced the RESTART Act to provide small- and mid-sized businesses and nonprofits with flexible loans to cover six months of costs, with generous repayment terms and loan forgiveness to help fill in revenue losses. This is the only bipartisan bill that looks beyond PPP to ensure temporary job losses don’t become permanent. First introduced in May, the legislation is now supported by 57 Senate co-sponsors, more than 8,700 small business owners, and more than 100 current and former prominent CEOs, including entrepreneur and philanthropist Howard Schultz.
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  • Funding our state, local, and tribal governments to prevent cuts to essential services
    • Flexible Fiscal Relief: Bennet has called for increased funding for state, local, and tribal governments, including $500 billion for state governments, $375 billion for local governments, and $20 billion for tribal governments, so they aren’t forced to lay off teachers and other essential workers, cut back on critical services, or shortchange repairs to our roads and bridges.
    • Health Coverage: In July, Bennet introduced legislation to increase federal support for state Medicaid programs to meet heightened health coverage needs, and maintain those increases until the economy recovers. In September, Congress passed key reforms, spearheaded by Bennet, to Medicare's payments program to reduce interest rates and modify repayment obligations for health care providers facing immense financial strain due to COVID-19.
    • Education: Bennet called for increased funding to provide support for K-12 and higher education institutions with budget shortfalls. He also introduced the BRIDGE Act to deploy affordable, high-speed broadband nationwide to meet the needs of distance learning.
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  • Tackling the public health crisis to save lives and investing in our public health and health care infrastructure
    • Health Force: Bennet introduced legislation to establish a national Health Force to create hundreds of thousands of jobs for people out of work, while filling positions at state and local public health agencies and their partners that are critical for community health, including contact tracers and case managers.
    • National Strategy: Since the beginning of the pandemic, Bennet has called for a coordinated, national strategy for testing, contact tracing, and PPE.
    • Rural Hospitals & Providers: Bennet introduced legislation to provide an immediate influx of funding for relief and stabilization for rural hospitals, and ensure providers have financial support.
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