Stimulus Proposal Offers Payments, Aid To People With Disabilities
The second economic stimulus package proposal released Thursday by Democrats in the U.S. House of Representatives includes a one-time stimulus payment to Supplemental Security Income (SSI) recipients amid several proposals to fund programs benefiting Americans with disabilities.
The plan, which features $550 billion in spending on domestic programs and $275 billion in tax cuts, would provide funds for health care, education and employment programs aimed at people with disabilities.
The nation’s 7.5 million SSI recipients would qualify for a one-time stimulus payment of about $450 for individuals or $630 for married couples in a $4.2 billion portion of the package.
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The proposal will be considered by the House within the next two weeks. It must also be voted on by the Senate. A version is expected to reach the desk of president-elect Barack Obama by mid-February.
Aside from the stimulus payment, some highlights of the proposal include:
• Funding for IDEA: $13 billion to states to fund the cost of special education for the 6.8 million students with disabilities. And, $600 million for early intervention services for young children.
• Medicaid: $87 billion for a temporary increase in the Medicaid matching rate for states.
• Independent Living: $200 million for the nation’s Centers for Independent Living.
• Vocational Rehabilitation: $500 million to states to help people learn skills and gain employment.
• Job Training: $4 billion for programs providing worker training.
• Teacher Quality: $200 million to provide incentives for educators.
• National Institutes of Health: $1.5 billion for biomedical research.
• Social Security: $500 million to reduce backlogs in the Social Security Administration’s claims and appeals processes.