Nearly two-thirds of Richmond Power Poll respondents believe the American Rescue Act stimulus plan to provide $1,400 checks to many Americans is needed as families try to recover financially from the pandemic – even though more than 86% of them said they don’t anticipate that their households will receive any money as part of the plan.
Congress passed the $1.9-trillion relief plan last week and President Joe Biden signed it. The act authorizes $1,400 checks for any individual with an annual gross income of $75,000 or less; the head of a household with an AGI of $112,500 or less; or a couple filing taxes jointly with an AGI of $150,000 or less.
Each eligible individual receives $1,400, including qualifying dependents.
Nearly 73% of this month’s poll respondents said that people need help recovering from the pandemic and that the Rescue Act therefore was necessary. But only about 13% said they anticipate that anyone from their households would qualify to receive the stimulus checks.
Of those who did expect to receive money, half said they planned to spend it on some basic needs as well as some wants (such as home improvement projects), while the other half said they planned to save or invest all of it.
This month’s poll of 135 people had a response rate of 16.3%.
Asked whether additional stimulus money should be paid by the federal government in the months ahead, half of respondents said no, indicating that this should be the last payment to anyone.
About 32% said yes, but only to a smaller group of people who are most in-need financially, while about 5% said yes to everyone who qualified for this payment. About 13% said they weren’t sure.
Prior to the American Rescue Act’s adoption, most Americans had received a $1,200 stimulus check last year, as well as a $600 check earlier this year.
Nationally, proponents of the relief plan contend that it’s a start but more help is needed for the millions of people who have been jobless for as long as a year because of the pandemic – and in some cases who have been unable to access unemployment funds for some or all of that time.
Critics of additional funding believe that the stimulus money is wasteful and not actually needed by most of the people who are receiving it.