COVID-19 Washington Update: August 5, 2020
August 5, 2020

Congress

Bipartisan negotiations on the next round of COVID-relief legislation continue, with leaders pointing to some progress over the last 24-48 hours. Administration officials have stressed the importance of reaching at least an agreement in principle on major issues by the end of the week. Just this evening, however, White House Chief of Staff Mark Meadows said the two sides remain trillions of dollars apart, putting even that Friday goal in doubt.

Press has report that the White House offered between $150-200 billion in funding for state and local governments (Democrats would like $1 trillion) as well as enhanced unemployment insurance benefits of $400 per week through mid-December (Democrats want $600 per week, stretching into early next year). Meanwhile, Republican Senators Romney (R-UT), Collins (R-ME), and McSally (R-AZ) today introduced a bill to extend currently expired pandemic unemployment insurance benefits through the end of the year, phasing in lower payments over time.

Earlier today, Senator Majority Leader McConnell (R-KY) said the Senate would be back in session next week and “we’ll see what happens after that.” House votes aren’t scheduled for the remainder of the month, though Democratic leadership is prepared to call Members back with 24 hours’ notice if and when an agreement is reached.

Recent Congressional Statements / Letters
 
Other Stakeholder Statements / Letters
   

White House / Agency Activity

White House
 
Department of Treasury
 
Department of Labor
 
Department of Health and Human Services
 
Food and Drug Administration
 
Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services
 
Department of Homeland Security
 
Department of Agriculture
 
Environmental Protection Agency
 
Department of Commerce
 
Federal Trade Commission
   

State / Local Activity

Given the plethora of state and local actions, we recommend MultiState’s COVID-19 Policy Tracker as a comprehensive tool to monitor the response.