New Federal Jobless Benefits To Include $400/Week Bonus, Not $600

Statewide Iowa — Iowans who are collecting unemployment will see federal benefits extended under President Trump’s executive order, which he signed as the U.S. House and Senate still disagree over a new COVID-19 relief package.

Iowa Senator Chuck Grassley says the president’s plan is for Uncle Sam to pick up 75-percent of the cost of those updated jobless benefits, leaving states to pay the remaining 25-percent.

(As above) “It would go $300 of enhanced federal money,” Grassley says, “and out of the $150-billion that went to states or their own money, they have to put up $100.”

The added federal jobless benefits ran out July 31st and while they lasted, were providing many unemployed people an additional 600-dollars a week. Grassley says the new 400-dollars-a-week plan is the result of compromise.

(As above) Grassley says, “That $400, I think, was probably selected because it was halfway between the $200 figure that was in the Senate bill and the $600 that we have right now.”

The 400-dollar payments are on top of the regular state unemployment benefits, so some people are able to make more money by not returning to work. Grassley says 600-dollars was way too much and hurt businesses of all sizes as they couldn’t get people to come back to their jobs.

(As above) “Maybe the $400 is still a disincentive for people to go back to work, but obviously it wouldn’t be as much of a disincentive as the $600,” Grassley says, “and I think it runs for two months.”

Negotiations over the new COVID relief package fell apart late last week. Democrats propose spending some three-trillion dollars through their plan, the HEROES Act, while Republicans favor a one-trillion dollar rescue effort called the HEALS Act.


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