- The $600 weekly enhancement to unemployment benefits will likely end after July 31.
- One Democratic proposal would gradually reduce the $600 benefit as the unemployment rate improves.
- A Republican idea would pay Americans a “bonus” to return to work.
The $600 enhancement to weekly unemployment checks is ending at the end of July.
While Democrats want to extend the extra pay into next year, Republicans appear resolute in blocking an extension.
But lawmakers on both sides of the political spectrum are floating other ideas, like tying aid amounts to the unemployment rate or paying a “bonus” to those who find a job.
Controversy over $600 benefits
Unemployment has soared to levels not seen since the Great Depression as a result of the coronavirus pandemic. Nearly 41 million Americans have filed for unemployment since mid-March.
The CARES Act, the $2.2 trillion coronavirus relief law enacted in late March, expanded jobless benefits.
In normal times, unemployment benefits, which are administered by the states, replace about 40% of prior wages for the average worker.