Biden speech highlights: When are we getting the next stimulus check, COVID relief bill tax changes and more from Biden speech and American Rescue Plan
RALPHIE AVERSA: All right, let's start first with the package, the relief bill that President Biden signed into law earlier today. What is going where with this $1.9 trillion?
NICHOLAS WU: Well, it's a huge bill. And I mean, you mentioned the $1,400 checks, that's definitely something that a lot of people know about. But there's plenty in that bill, too, beyond the checks. I mean, for example, there's a huge expansion of the child tax credit, up to $3,600 per child in most families. So this will have a huge effect on poverty across America. There's money in there for vaccine development and distribution. There's billions of dollars in funding for schools to reopen. So there's a whole lot in there, and we're only just going to start seeing the effects of it over the next few weeks.
RALPHIE AVERSA: OK, so let's go real quick. I'm sure something that viewers are concerned about is those schools. Do you know what specifically is being done to address schools reopening?
NICHOLAS WU: Right. So there's a certain amount of funding that can be given as grants to schools, in order for them to try to create better ventilation systems and really retrofit schools in a way that would make them COVID-safe for children.
RALPHIE AVERSA: And then as far as trying to help out small businesses, I guess, what's in the package as far as that?
NICHOLAS WU: So there's billions of dollars in funding for aid. And actually, unlike in previous packages, there's a specific amount of aid set aside for restaurants, which will be a huge help for plenty of places around the country that have had to close because of COVID, or shift to an entirely carryout format.
RALPHIE AVERSA: Absolutely. And of course, you mentioned, it's interesting to hear you throw around the term billions. You have to remember that this is a $1.9 trillion package, so obviously, there's a lot of money. And of course, as we mentioned, these $1,400 checks that are in there as well. What is the latest on those stimulus checks, as far as who's eligible, and when they will be receiving them?
NICHOLAS WU: That's for sure. So the White House press secretary said today that the first checks could actually start arriving in people's bank accounts by this weekend. So that's only if you have direct deposit on file with the IRS. And then for those who file their taxes by paper, it could take a little bit longer to process all that, especially given that this is right in the middle of tax season.