Come on Congress, people need help

ore federal help is merited because of job losses, business closings and more caused by the coronavirus.

Yet, all we keep hearing is that Congress is “close” on agreeing to more federal aid to help sustain people.

Unless members of Congress find a way to compromise and give Americans a Christmas through a new round of COVID-19 relief funding, the holiday season will be grim for tens of millions of people.

Among many provisions in the original CARES Act was one that states had to spend all the money allocated to them under the bill by Dec. 30.

In March, that may have seemed reasonable.

But the powers-that-be in Washington failed to take into account the more prudent approach many governors have taken.

In state capitals, many leaders adopted the wise policy of holding onto federal funding in case of a rainier day than even that of March, when the CARES Act was enacted.

As a result, tens of billions of dollars remain unspent.

State and local governments that allocated CARES Act money now may face a spend-it-or-lose-it situation.

Instead of conserving resources that may be needed badly early next year, they are being told to spend the cash before the end of the year.

Can Congress scrap the Dec. 30 deadline?

Surely Republican and Democrat lawmakers can manage to agree on that.

When will partisan bickering in Congress ease enough to permit enactment of a new CARES Act? Millions are without jobs … and health care.

Our federal leaders can and should make it a priority to mobilize public opinion in favor of extending the Dec. 30 deadline.


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