O’Neal calls for vote on $5 billion in federal stimulus dollars

SAGINAW, Mich., Feb. 1, 2021 — Rep. Amos O’Neal (D-Saginaw) joined Michigan House Democrats today in supporting a pandemic recovery plan that would immediately release $5 billion in federal dollars to help Michigan workers, small businesses, families and schools impacted most by the COVID-19 pandemic.

O’Neal and Michigan House Democrats called on legislative Republicans to stop holding hostage the funding critical to Michigan’s recovery from the pandemic.

“It’s past time that legislative Republicans step up and provide the assistance Michiganders so desperately need,” said O’Neal. “This pandemic has challenged us in ways we never thought possible, including presenting unique obstacles for our students and teachers. I have spoken with many Saginaw-area educators who have met these challenges head on, but we could provide the support they need by freeing $2 billion in school funding currently sitting in limbo. A simple up or down vote this week on releasing those funds will provide immediate relief to Michigan schools, workers, families and businesses.”

Specifics of the supplemental appropriations bill include:

  • $90 million for vaccine distribution throughout Michigan.
  • $575 million to expand COVID testing, tracing, and lab capacity.
  • $2.1 billion in food assistance.
  • $660 million to help with rental assistance and winter utility bills.
  • $2 billion for Michigan schools.
  • $270 million for small business relief.
  • Language that would extend unemployment assistance from 20 to 26 weeks.