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Update - 3/11/21 - America Rescue Plan Bill is signed!


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Evangelical Christians and small-government activists, among the fiercest critics of President Joe Biden and the Democratic Congress, are finding solace in $1,400 stimulus checks that some are sharing with churches and political causes.

 

In a January Bible study livestream, Virginia pastor E.W. Jackson said a pair of Georgians headed for the U.S. Senate were “demoniacally possessed” and their fellow Democrats were “cursing” the country by supporting abortion access and gay rights. Newly minted senators Raphael Warnock and Jon Ossoff were key to Biden’s $1.9 trillion American Rescue Plan, which passed the evenly divided Senate with no Republican support.

 

But as the stimulus checks they enabled arrive, Jackson, said his followers should have no qualms about accepting the Democrats’ largess -- and passing 10% to his ministry, the 100-member Called Church of Chesapeake.

 

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Biden admin sued for pushing white men to ‘back of the line’ for COVID aid

 

A Wisconsin group is suing the Biden administration on behalf of a Tennessee business owner, claiming that it is giving preference to restaurants and bars owned by women and minorities for COVID relief funds — adding that white men are being “pushed to the back of the line” for assistance, according to a report.

 

The lawsuit, which names Small Business Association Administrator Isabella Casillas Guzman, was filed for Antonio Vitolo, the owner of Jake’s Bar and Grill in Harriman, Tenn., Fox 17 in Nashville reported.

 

It was filed in federal court in Tennessee by the Wisconsin Institute for Law & Liberty and targets the $28.6 billion Restaurant Revitalization Fund, which is only processing applications from “priority groups” — women, veterans, or “socially and economically disadvantaged individuals” — between May 3 and May 24.

 

Broader eligibility for assistance opens up after that period.

 

Vitolo said he applied for the COVID aid on May 3 but was told he didn’t qualify because he is white, the suit says.

 

It claims the distinctions are unconstitutional and calls on the administration to halt the payments until an equitable system is in place for distributing them, like first-come, first-served.

 

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5 minutes ago, China said:

Biden admin sued for pushing white men to ‘back of the line’ for COVID aid

 

A Wisconsin group is suing the Biden administration on behalf of a Tennessee business owner, claiming that it is giving preference to restaurants and bars owned by women and minorities for COVID relief funds — adding that white men are being “pushed to the back of the line” for assistance, according to a report.

 

The lawsuit, which names Small Business Association Administrator Isabella Casillas Guzman, was filed for Antonio Vitolo, the owner of Jake’s Bar and Grill in Harriman, Tenn., Fox 17 in Nashville reported.

 

It was filed in federal court in Tennessee by the Wisconsin Institute for Law & Liberty and targets the $28.6 billion Restaurant Revitalization Fund, which is only processing applications from “priority groups” — women, veterans, or “socially and economically disadvantaged individuals” — between May 3 and May 24.

 

Broader eligibility for assistance opens up after that period.

 

Vitolo said he applied for the COVID aid on May 3 but was told he didn’t qualify because he is white, the suit says.

 

It claims the distinctions are unconstitutional and calls on the administration to halt the payments until an equitable system is in place for distributing them, like first-come, first-served.

 

Click on the link for the full article

Seems like Vitolo needs to invest in some stronger bootstraps.

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Round one of child tax credit payments slashed hunger rates, U.S. data shows

 

The percentage of American families with kids who report not having enough to eat fell dramatically after the first child tax credit payments were distributed last month, according to new data from the U.S. Census Bureau.

 

The government’s finding shows that the monthly payments are having a major and immediate impact on millions of households, potentially bolstering President Joe Biden’s push to extend the tax credit past the end of this year, when it is set to expire.

 

“It is great news that the estimated rate of hunger among those with children is at a pandemic low,” said Diane Whitmore Schanzenbach, director of the Institute for Policy Research at Northwestern University, who has been closely tracking food hardship rates throughout the pandemic.

 

The monthly payments of up to $300 for each kid under five and up to $250 for each kid under 18 are the result of one of the most sweeping provisions in the American Rescue Plan, though the policy did not garner much media attention at the time. The payments are set to continue each month through December.

 

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AP: States and cities slow to spend federal pandemic money

 

As Congress considered a massive COVID-19 relief package earlier this year, hundreds of mayors from across the U.S. pleaded for “immediate action” on billions of dollars targeted to shore up their finances and revive their communities.

 

Now that they’ve received it, local officials are taking their time before actually spending the windfall.

 

As of this summer, a majority of large cities and states hadn’t spent a penny from the American Rescue Plan championed by Democrats and President Joe Biden, according to an Associated Press review of the first financial reports due under the law. States had spent just 2.5% of their initial allotment while large cities spent 8.5%, according to the AP analysis.

 

Many state and local governments reported they were still working on plans for their share of the $350 billion, which can be spent on a wide array of programs.

 

Though Biden signed the law in March, the Treasury Department didn’t release the money and spending guidelines until May. By then, some state legislatures already had wrapped up their budget work for the next year, leaving governors with no authority to spend the new money. Some states waited several more months to ask the federal government for their share.

 

Cities sometimes delayed decisions while soliciting suggestions from the public. And some government officials — still trying to figure out how to spend previous rounds of federal pandemic aid — simply didn’t see an urgent need for the additional cash.

 

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