Students left out of the first stimulus check, what about the next?

Christian Lohrenz ® Staff Writer |

Naturally, one of the last things students want to think about in their second week of school is money. However, given the circumstances this semester is under, it is a hard subject to avoid. Whether you are a first-year student moving into the dorms or a returning student, the job market is in flux here in Mankato. For some students who are at odds, it seems there is a need for a kind of intervention.

In April, Congress moved the first stimulus bill into action. To the dismay of many, the first stimulus bill skipped over children who were over 16, college students under the age of 24, or “non-resident aliens” which at the time excluded international students. There has been continued discussion in Congress for the need of a second bill for several months, yet there has been no action.

Why hasn’t congress passed a bill granting a second round of stimulus checks? Well the answer won’t surprise you. Republicans and Democrats have had a difficult time coming to any kind of an agreement on the ramifications of the bill. Democrats have been pushing for a larger relief fund near the price range of $2.4 trillion, ($1 trillion less than the first bill). Republicans have found this cost far too high and have looked to negotiate passing a more watered-down bill before the August recess. Their suggested bill would be less than $1 trillion but would exclude funding to many of the areas Democrats feel need funding, such as the US Postal Service.

Now where does this leave college students? In the times of COVID-19, social distancing, and continued limited capacity businesses, how are students supposed to get money? “I’m able to donate plasma currently” stated Hunter Theisen, fourth year Mechanical Engineering student at MNSU “but setting aside time to work this semester is going to be hard.” It seems the bill in question would offer a huge benefit to students, whom under the Democrat proposal would be likely to receive the full $1,200 with a capacity of three dependents. The Republican bill offers the same $500 for dependents within the family without a max per family.

Congress will break on Labor Day and will reconvene later in September. Recent news suggests that due to their several trillion-dollar difference it is unlikely that a bill will get passed before this break, which kicks the can down the road. It seems that the stage has been set for very intense debate when they reconvene in mid-September. Being that this is a high publicity election year though, some believe that this whole issue may get pushed and pushed until after the election, which would result in a great struggle from numerous families across the country, and several students at MNSU.

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