When the first round of stimulus checks was sent out, the process was anything but smooth.
Complaints ranged from Americans receiving incorrect amounts to banks cashing their checks to pay off outstanding debt. Glitches even prevented many from checking the status of their payments or applying for direct deposit.
Even now, a handful of Americans are still awaiting their checks while struggling to stay afloat financially amid the coronavirus lockdown.
All of that might change with the proposed second wave of stimulus checks.
Members of Congress, and even President Trump, echoed what many Americans have been declaring since the pandemic began – a one-time payment of $1,200 is not enough money for those who have fallen on tough times, been laid off or furloughed, and are struggling to provide for their families.
Tim Ryan (D-OH) and Ro Khanna (D-CA) introduced the Emergency Money for the People Act, which, if passed, would provide monthly cash payments to millions of eligible Americans until things return to normal.
Congresswomen Rashida Tlaib (D-Mich.) and Pramila Jayapal (D-Wash.) proposed a similar plan called the Automatic BOOST to Communities Act (ABC Act) that introduced “digital dollars.” Under the plan, each American would swiftly receive $2,000.
The plan would authorize the U.S. Federal Reserve to create FedAccounts so that money could be directly deposited into bank accounts of those in need and who meet the criteria.
This system would efficiently bypass check printing, which is time-consuming, and bank account wire transfers, which has resulted in the deceased accidentally receiving stimulus checks.
"No later than January 1, 2021, the Secretary shall offer all recipients of BOOST payments the option to receive their payments in digital dollar wallets," the bill read, according to Forbes.
Digital dollars are only a minor part of the bill. The reps also want those that have FedAccounts to have access to “debit cards, online account access, automatic bill-pay, mobile banking and automatic teller machines maintained in conjunction with the United States Postal Services at its physical locations.”
In Ryan and Khanna’s bill, anyone over the age of 16 making less than $130,000 annually would qualify for $2,000 a month. Married couples earning less $260,000 would get $4,000 per month.
The idea of creating a digital dollar first appeared in the “Take Responsibility for Workers and Families Act” introduced by House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) to eliminate coronavirus recession, but it was cut from the final bill.