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Congresswoman Frederica Wilson

Representing the 24th District of Florida

Wilson Applauds Passage of The Heroes Act, with Vital Benefits for Florida and Local Communities and Counties

May 18, 2020
Press Release

Miami, FL – Congresswoman Wilson applauds the passage of The Heroes Act, House Democrats’ urgently-needed legislation to address the unprecedented coronavirus health and economic crisis and provide desperately needed support for struggling families and essential workers, with funds for testing and tracing measures, key support for frontline workers and strengthened assistance for the American people.  Rep. Wilson also praised the estimated direct benefits that the Heroes Act would provide to Florida and local communities.

“We are in the midst of the worst economic crisis since World War II and a major crisis demands bold action. I am proud to stand with my colleagues to pass this critical legislation in support of our heroes on the front lines of this crisis and to provide Americans in Florida and across the country the relief they urgently need,” said Rep. Wilson.  “The frontline workers at risk of losing their jobs and the millions of Americans at risk of losing their lives and livelihoods cannot afford further delay.  The Heroes Act takes the bold, far-reaching steps that the coronavirus crisis demands and that the American people deserve.”

The Heroes Act provides Florida’s government and local communities on the frontlines of this crisis with robust, desperately needed funding to cover coronavirus-related outlays and revenue loss and to pay our health care workers, first responders, EMS, teachers, sanitation workers,  transit workers and other vital workers who keep us safe and are in danger of losing their jobs. 

An analysis prepared by the Congressional Research Service estimates that the Heroes Act will provide $5,231,568 in state funding for the people of Florida in addition to urgently needed funding for District 24 communities:

o   Miami – $400,161,168 over two years;

o   Miami Gardens – $78,806,806 over two years;

o   Opa Locka – $8,074,949 over two years;

o   Miramar – $64,602,405 over two years;

o   Pembroke Pines – $66,472,619 over two years; and

o   Hollywood – $90,149,969 over two years.

Also, critically, the only way to safely reopen our country is to have a robust testing and contact tracing program – and the Heroes Act provides $75 billion to help launch this vital program.  We need to have widespread testing in order to give Americans the confidence to return to their workplaces.

The Heroes Act also includes a $90 billion fund to support state and local public education, including $5,231,568 for Florida communities.  This funding will help maintain or restore state and local fiscal support for elementary, secondary and public higher education and can be used to meet a wide range of urgent needs, including summer learning, afterschool programs, distance learning, and emergency financial aid for college students as well as coordination with public health departments to mitigate the spread of disease.

In addition to resources for our state, local, tribal and territorial governments, the Heroes Act provides transformative, far-reaching support to protect the lives and livelihoods of the American people and the life of our democracy.

  • Provides strong support for our heroes by establishing a $200 billion Heroes’ fund to ensure that essential workers across the country receive hazard pay.  
  • Puts money in the pockets of workers with a second round of direct payments to families up to $6,000 per household, new payroll protection measures to keep 60 million workers connected with their jobs and extending weekly $600 federal unemployment payments through next January.
  • Supports small businesses by strengthening the Payroll Protection Program to ensure that it reaches underserved communities, nonprofits of all sizes and types and responds flexibly to small businesses by providing $10 billion for COVID-19 emergency grants through the Economic Injury Disaster Loan program.
  • Ensures further support for Floridians and all Americans, including for:
    • Health security – with COBRA subsidies and a special enrollment period in the ACA exchanges for those without insurance.
    • Workplace security – requiring OSHA to ensure that all workplaces develop science-based infection control plans and preventing employers from retaliating against workers who report problems.
    • Housing security – with $175 billion in new supports to assist renters and homeowners make monthly rent, mortgage and utility payments and other housing-related costs.
    • Food security – with a 15 percent increase to the maximum SNAP benefit and additional funding for nutrition programs that help families put food on the table.
  • Protects the life of our democracy with new resources to ensure safe elections, an accurate Census, and preserve the Postal Service. 

“As an elected representative, I have a responsibility to protect the health and well-being of the people of Florida and all Americans,” continued Rep. Wilson.  “The Heroes Act is necessary to ensure that all of our communities have the support and resources needed to weather this storm.  I now call on Leader Mitch McConnell to take up this vital legislation so we can work together to get the American people the relief they desperately need, because the cost of inaction is far too high.”