- Demand for a fourth pandemic stimulus check is high, but it’s unlikely the federal government will release more support.
- Four states are trying to respond to that demand.
- California, Florida, New Mexico, and Tennessee have set aside funds to provide direct payments to residents.
- See more stories on Insider’s business page.
Americans are increasingly calling for more stimulus money as the coronavirus pandemic drags on. Some states are responding on their own as the prospect of Washington approving a fourth-round of checks seems more and more unlikely.
So far, there have been three rounds of stimulus checks. Eligible Americans received $US1,400 ($AU1,961) stimulus checks in March. The Trump administration issued two stimulus checks nine months apart: The checks in the first round were $US1,200 ($AU1,681), the second were $US600 ($AU841).
As Insider’s Joseph Zeballos-Roig points out, a fourth stimulus check is unlikely. That’s because the economy is regaining jobs, he reported in an analysis published in early July. The White House in May threw the ball in Congress’ court, saying it’s up to lawmakers to determine whether a fourth stimulus would be issued.
“We’ll see what members of Congress propose,” said Jen Psaki, the White House press secretary. She added that the stimulus package is generally costly to the federal government.
A petition with almost 3 million signatures illustrates there is wide support for not only a single round but also recurring stimulus checks.
Here are the four states that are offering direct payments to residents in an attempt to meet demand for extra support:
Last month, California Gov. Gavin Newsom signed a $US100 ($AU140) billion recovery package that will enable direct payments to go out to millions of residents.
The package allocates $US12 ($AU17) billion toward stimulus relief, with individuals receiving a $US600 ($AU841) check starting in September. Some families with kids will receive an additional $US500 ($AU700). Newsom’s office says the stimulus checks will reach “nearly two thirds of Californians.”
For first responders, one-time, $US1,000 ($AU1,401) stimulus checks are expected to hit bank accounts shortly, Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis said earlier this week. Nearly 200,000 first responders are qualified to receive the payment, DeSantis’ office said.
Teachers and educators can also expect to receive stimulus checks in the amount of $US1,000 ($AU1,401).
“Those should be arriving this week and into next week,” DeSantis said on Tuesday.
Thousands of low-income individuals should expect to receive a one-time check of up to $US750 ($AU1,051), according to the New Mexico Human Services Department.
The initiative is part of a $US5 ($AU7) million state program that provides financial assistance to low-income households in New Mexico. Individuals with the lowest income will receive the checks first, the department said.
“These support payments are critical to many New Mexico families,” said Human Services Secretary David Scrase. “We are proud of this effort and will continue providing support to New Mexicans in need.”
Full-time teachers are eligible for a 1,000 check after the Tennessee legislature passed a bill in June. Part-time teachers are eligible to receive a $US500 ($AU700) check.
The direct payments are expected to roll in over the course of 2021.