Stimulus checks in Colorado?
Here’s what you need to know.
After Congress failed to pass a stimulus bill this fall, Colorado will issue its own stimulus check. Here’s who will receive a stimulus check:
- Who: 435,000 people
- How Much: $375 one-time stimulus check
- Eligibility: must earn less than $52,000 a year, received at least $1 of unemployment insurance between March 15, 2020 and October 24, 2020, and was eligible to receive between $25 and $500 a week in unemployment benefits during this period.
Colorado Governor Jared Polis signed an executive order to issue $168 million of stimulus checks.
“The economic impacts of COVID-19 are significant, and threaten to undermine the economic stability of many Coloradans and local businesses,” Polis wrote in the executive order. “The risk of contamination posed by COVID-19 necessitated closure of multiple businesses. Employers and employees in virtually all sectors of the economy have been hard hit. While we have seen indications that our efforts to “flatten the curve” are working, transmission of the virus continues to threaten Coloradans’ way of life and livelihoods.”
How the stimulus checks are funded
Interestingly, Colorado tied the one-time stimulus check to unemployment insurance. Polis notes that many Coloradans have not received federal unemployment benefits since early September. Polis’ executive order directs the stimulus checks to be issued from the state’s unemployment insurance system to eligible individuals who face economic hardship as a result of Covid-19. The executive order mandates that all stimulus checks will be issued no later than December 4, 2020.
Here’s the breakdown of sources:
- Medical Services Premium: $148.9 million
- Disaster Emergency Fund: $13.8 million
- Controlled Maintenance Trust Fund: $5.3 million
Will there be a stimulus deal?
There won’t be a stimulus deal in Congress before the election. Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) and Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin did not reach agreement on a potential stimulus deal that could have included second stimulus checks, federal unemployment benefits and state and local aid. There had been agreement in principle on second stimulus checks of up to $1,200 for each individual, $2,400 for each married couple or joint filer, and $500 for each qualifying dependent. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY), who is facing re-election, adjourned the Senate until November 9.
If there is no stimulus package in the near-term, will more states act to provide economic relief? Colorado is one example of a governor issuing stimulus checks through an executive order. Although many states have faced economic hardship from the impact of Covid-19, and may not have available financial resources, could more states issue stimulus checks from existing sources? These stimulus checks didn’t appear to require new legislation, which begs the question whether other governors will follow suit. The notion of executives issuing stimulus checks is not limited to the state level, however. President Donald Trump proposed to send second stimulus checks with Covid relief funds.