- The House passed a $1.9 trillion Covid relief bill, the American Rescue Plan Act of 2021, early Saturday.
- The stimulus bill extends unemployment benefits to Aug. 29 and increases aid by $400 a week.
- The pandemic relief measure now heads to the Senate. Democrats aim to send it to President Joe Biden by March 14.
The $1.9 trillion Covid relief bill passed early Saturday by the House of Representatives would extend unemployment benefits by more than five months and offer recipients an extra $400 a week.
The Senate will now consider the legislation. Democrats in the chamber can pass the bill with a simple majority using a budget rule called reconciliation.
More than 19 million Americans were collecting benefits as of early February, according to the Labor Department.
Those programs include Pandemic Unemployment Assistance for self-employed, gig and other workers who don't qualify for state-level assistance; and Pandemic Emergency Unemployment Compensation, which pays extra weeks of state benefits to the long-term unemployed.
The bill would offer PUA recipients a maximum 74 weeks of benefits, up from 50. PEUC recipients would get up to 48 weeks instead of 24.
Benefit recipients would also get an extra $400 a week through Aug. 29.
State unemployment benefits replaced about 38% of pre-layoff wages for workers, on average, in the third quarter last year, according to the Labor Department. An extra $400 a week would raise that wage replacement to 86%.
The bill would also provide an extra $100 a week for certain self-employed workers. Workers are eligible for this if they make at least $5,000 in net self-employment income and aren't receiving benefits through the Pandemic Unemployment Assistance program.