'Golden State Stimulus': $600 Checks Could Soon Be En Route

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Kat Schuster
·3 min read
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CALIFORNIA — Some 4 million Californians could receive a $600 "Golden State Stimulus" check within the next few weeks, Gov. Gavin Newsom said in a video posted to social media.

The one-time payment would go to Golden State residents with an annual income of $30,000 or less.

“Low-income families have been disproportionately impacted by this pandemic. That's why we announced recently a new stimulus. We refer to it as the Golden State Stimulus,” Newsom said in a TikTok video.

California's own stimulus checks would match the federal stimulus of $600, providing upwards of $1,200 to some Californians who get both checks, Newsom said.

"Let's get this done," Newsom urged.

The state-tailored stimulus was a part of a $5 billion "Immediate Action Package" which was included in Newsom's proposal of the state's budget, which was projected to be the most expensive budget in state history.

The $2.4 billion plan would place checks in the hands of all low-income 2019 taxpayers who received a California Earned Income Tax Credit in 2020, as well as those who are eligible to receive the state credit in 2021, according to state documents.

This means that the state's stimulus payments could go to those who did not receive a federal stimulus and would help "undocumented households that file taxes with an Individual Taxpayer Identification Number (ITIN), including parents with U.S. citizen children," according to a statement from Newsom's office on Jan. 6.

"In these darkest moments of the COVID-19 pandemic, this Budget will help Californians with urgent action to address our immediate challenges and build towards our recovery," Newsom wrote in a statement in early January.

Although Newsom is pleading with lawmakers to quickly approve his "emergency funding" package, lawmakers have until June 15 to review his proposal and vote on it.

Newsom laid out his $227 billion spending plan in early January which included a $15 billion economic relief package as the state faced the height of its winter surge of coronavirus cases and hospitalizations.

This budget proposal, reportedly the most expensive budget in California's history, was made possible by a windfall that came down from California's wealthiest residents and growing tax revenue despite the anticipated economic shortfall of the coronavirus pandemic.

California leaders made some deep spending cuts to the state's budget last year, bracing for a $54.3 billion shortfall spurred by the pandemic, but that didn't happen.

"Folks at the top [are] doing pretty damn well," Newsom said at a news conference in early January.

Newsom is encouraging the California Legislature to act quickly on his proposed Immediate Action Plan, which includes the stimulus "rapid cash" checks.

"This will act as a bridge while we wait for more federal relief," Newsom tweeted on Saturday.

This article originally appeared on the Across California Patch