Washington, DC – Congresswoman Julia Brownley (D-CA) issued the following statement today following the passage of the Heroes Act:

“Today, I voted for critically needed legislation that will provide additional funds to address the unprecedented health and economic crises brought on by COVID-19.

“More than 36 million Americans have filed for unemployment insurance in the past 8 weeks and more than 85,000 Americans have died from the coronavirus. Congress cannot sit idly by while this economic and public health emergency ravages our nation.

“Passage of the Heroes Act will provide additional support to middle class families, our healthcare providers, our schools, small businesses, and our state and local governments. Critically, the Heroes Act will also provide additional support to end homelessness among veterans with children – an issue I’ve been working on for some time via my bill, H.R. 95, that passed the House last Fall — and other necessary protections for veterans.

“While this bill is not perfect, it is a critical step toward providing additional resources to support middle class families, our hospitals, our police and firefighters, our teachers, and our nation’s veterans.

“The Heroes Act will also provide an additional $75 billion in funding for expanded testing, tracing, and treatment that will help us safely reopen our country, nearly $1 trillion for state, local, territorial, and tribal governments who desperately need funds to pay our frontline heroes – including our police and firefighters and essential workers, and $10 billion for additional small businesses assistance.

“The bill also includes additional funding to provide Americans with a second round of direct payments of $1,200 to individual family members, up to $6,000 per household. The Heroes Act also fixes problems from the CARES Act that prohibited U.S. citizen spouses and U.S. citizen children, as well as dependents 17 and older, from receiving direct emergency payments.

“As Ventura County — and the entire country — continues to face this unprecedented health emergency, Congress cannot simply pause our relief efforts while so many families are struggling. We have a responsibility to protect the economic and physical health of our communities.

“I call on Mitch McConnell to take up this legislation immediately. Our nation cannot simply go on hold while cynical political maneuvering hijacks our efforts.”