On February 27, 2021 the House of Representatives passed H.R. 1319, the American Rescue Plan Act of 2021. The Senate will now consider the package with the goal of passing it before March 14, 2021, when enhanced federal unemployment benefits expire.
On February 19, 2021 the House Committee on the Budget unveiled S. Con. Res. 5, the COVID-19 reconciliation package for the American Rescue Plan Act of 2021. This package comprises the $1.9 trillion proposal from the White House and Congressional Democrats who intend to pass the package using the accelerated budget procedure known as reconciliation. Initiating reconciliation procedures in the Senate allows the majority party to pass certain legislation by a simple majority vote, versus the typical 60-vote threshold for most legislation. However, for legislation to be passed via reconciliation, it must conform to certain budgetary rules, known broadly as the Byrd rule. This has implications for a number of provisions, including the minimum wage increase proposal, which could result in changes to the package in the Senate, requiring a vote on the Senate-approved measure in the House.
We are closely monitoring this package and how certain changes may impact the timing for passage and scope of the package.
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