Missing jobs data and disputed loan amounts cloud government records on $660B small-business bailout
PHILADELPHIA — Michael Schulson was thrown a lifeline by the federal government’s bailout for small businesses during the coronavirus pandemic. It helped him get almost half of his 178 employees back to work serving takeout customers and outdoor diners at his popular Sampan and Double Knot restaurants in Philadelphia’s Center City.So he didn’t know what to think when he saw his company listed in records released this week by the Trump administration as having received millions more than his actual award from the Paycheck Protection Program — while retaining no jobs at all.“I was a bit surprise...
The Philadelphia Inquirer
Is it time for another stimulus bill? Here are some expert opinions
House Democrats proposed a roughly $3 trillion bill recently to battle the health and economic effects of COVID-19.Some Republican lawmakers, and a top White House economic adviser, have cautioned against another round of federal stimulus spending too soon after the last package — preferring to take a “wait and see” approach.Politics aside, many Americans are wondering if the federal government will be offering more support as they are out of work.Q: Should the federal government wait a while before another stimulus bill?Kelly Cunningham, San Diego Institute for Economic ResearchYES: After imm...
The San Diego Union-Tribune
Gov. Newsom vows to add firefighters despite California budget woes, as 'ferocious' summer looms
SACRAMENTO, Calif. — With a “ferocious and challenging” wildfire season looming, California Gov. Gavin Newsom pledged to hire hundreds of new firefighters Wednesday — but acknowledged that his new budget will curtail some of his previous funding proposals to help the state respond to emergencies.As the state falls into a multibillion-dollar budget deficit because of the coronavirus pandemic, Newsom said he’ll work with the Legislature to secure more than $200 million in new funding for Cal Fire and the Office of Emergency Services.“We are not going to step back despite the economic headwinds,”...
The Sacramento Bee
Postal Service's struggles could hurt mail-in election
WASHINGTON — An unprecedented shift in American democracy is underway, as more states and counties turn to voting by mail. But as jurisdictions prepare for a pandemic-riddled presidential election, the threat of a financial crisis at the U.S. Postal Service looms over that alternative to in-person voting.If Congress does not pass a $75 billion bailout, the Postal Service says uninterrupted mail service may not last past September. That’s when local election officials plan to send out mail-in absentee ballots, letters with polling place information, voting booklets, new voter cards and federall...
Editorial: The sorry tale of United's bailout and layoffs, as recounted by Sen. Dick Durbin
We didn’t like the Trump administration’s bailout of airlines because these companies should succeed or fail based on their business performance, not lobbying skills. Our lack of trust in the process was confirmed by United Airlines’ plans to lay off thousands of managers and others starting in October, as soon as its promise to avoid job cuts expires.Washington’s deal with the airlines went like this: United and other carriers would get billions in grants and loans to support the industry through the worst of the coronavirus crisis. In exchange, the carriers would agree to keep employment sta...
McConnell now 'open' to coronavirus bailouts for hard-hit states after Democratic outrage
Mitch McConnell couldn’t stand the heat.The Republican Senate leader on Wednesday backed off his controversial claim that coronavirus-ravaged states should go bankrupt and said he’s “open” to bailing them out, apparently caving to blistering criticism from New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo and other Democrats.McConnell — whose bankruptcy comments last week may have turned him into one of the most hated men in Washington — said in an interview on Fox News Radio that “all governors, regardless of party, would like to have more money” amid the economy-crushing pandemic.“I’m open to discussing that,” McC...
New York Daily News
Editorial: McConnell's reckless COVID-19 bailout claim on pensions
Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell’s suggestion that states financially strapped by the pandemic should declare bankruptcy rather than receive federal aid would further devastate the national economy, destabilize the municipal bond markets and unfairly damage the retirements of government workers.McConnell, R-Ky., says the federal government should not bail out governments of blue states like California because of the past fiscal mistakes they have made, most notably their poorly run public employee retirement promises.“We’re not interested in solving their pension problems for them,” he t...
The Mercury News
Cuomo: 'I dare you' to let states declare coronavirus bankruptcy in scathing attack on GOP
NEW YORK — Gov. Andrew Cuomo angrily challenged Republicans to force hard-hit states to declare bankruptcy instead of giving them stimulus aid to cope with the coronavirus crisis.“Pass the law. I dare you,” he said. “You want to send a signal to the markets that this nation is in real trouble? … I dare you to do that.”The governor tore into Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., for suggesting that the GOP wouldn’t fund “blue state bailouts” for New York and other pandemic-stricken states.He reminded McConnell that New York gives more money to the federal government than it takes back ...
New York Daily News
Cuomo blasts McConnell's 'dumb, vicious' opposition to 'blue state' coronavirus bailouts
NEW YORK — New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo has a bone to pick with the Senate’s grim reaper.The governor shredded Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell on Thursday as heartless and plain “dumb” for suggesting that New York and other coronavirus-ravaged states should go bankrupt instead of receiving federal bailouts.“You will see a collapse of this national economy. So just dumb, vicious,” Cuomo said of the Kentucky Republican’s bankruptcy blather during his daily COVID-19 briefing from Albany.McConnell — who proudly calls himself the “grim reaper” of the Senate because of his penchant for blocking...
New York Daily News
Commentary: The Postal Service's untapped real estate fortune
At a moment when the post office is most needed, its future is murkier than ever. With millions of Americans currently dependent on the United States Postal Service for essential products like medicine as a result of the coronavirus, we still need a universal and affordable delivery safety net. But with costs rising and mail revenue collapsing, the future of the agency is in question. Could the USPS’ massive real estate holdings provide a path toward financial sustainability?At least on paper, the coronavirus crisis should have been a boon for the USPS’ business, with packages going out in dro...
Tribune News Service