Lawmakers are far from agreeing on new coronavirus relief bill

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The fate of millions of struggling and jobless Americans remains in limbo after some Democratic and Republican leaders spent the weekend trying to come to an agreement on the next stimulus deal. Despite the extra time spent negotiating, political leaders on both sides of the aisle say they have a long way to go.“We have made good progress, [but] there are a lot of things on which we are always divided, ”Senator Charles Schumer said at a press conference on Sunday.

Schumer said there were four key points Democrats wanted in the bill: a renewal of pandemic unemployment benefits of $ 600, an extension of insurance coverage for tenants and landlords, l money for state and local governments, as well as funding to help schools open up safe.

Federal pandemic controls expired on Friday and nearly 33.5 million Americans filed for unemployment, according to the Department of Labor.

“People are struggling over there,” said New Yorker Dylan Rawlings. “It is helping a lot of people get through the crisis.”

“They should be extended. I don’t think they should be extended to the maximum of $ 600. I think it’s a little too generous, ”added local Joe Lopresco. “I think people need to be encouraged to return to work more.”

Although Congress has still not reached a deal on federal pandemic controls, New York State offers additional unemployment benefits for up to 20 weeks, but this money is based on a person’s old salary, so low salaries will see a drastic decrease in aid.

“It’s a drop in the bucket compared to what other nations are giving people,” said Paul Jodelson. “Six hundred dollars is nothing compared to that. ”

Senator Schumer pointed out that this was the most serious health and economic crisis the country has seen in decades.

Republicans and Democrats will continue their negotiations in the coming days.

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