Rep. Deutch Statement on Passage of Heroes Act
This evening, the U.S. House of Representatives passed the Heroes Act to address the ongoing coronavirus public health crisis and provide desperately needed support for struggling families and essential workers, including funds for testing and tracing measures, funding for South Florida’s cities and counties, additional funding for the Paycheck Protection Program, and extended unemployment benefits.
Congressman Ted Deutch (FL-22) voted in favor of the Heroes Act. Upon its passage, he issued this statement:
"Every week, I speak with frontline workers, first responders, business owners, non-profit leaders, local officials, and students to find out what they need from Congress and the federal government.
"Especially as Florida takes its first steps to reopen, we cannot lose sight of the pandemic's continued threat to our health and the lasting financial impact felt by families and businesses.
"Our nation will feel the effects of this pandemic for months and years to come. Congress must not only meet the needs of today but also look ahead to the challenges to come. This bill invests in the frontline responders who are leading the fight against this virus as well as those who bear the brunt of its impact.
"This plan directs $75 billion to build out our testing, tracing, and treatment plans, which must be a foundational element of any plans to resume our lives.
"The Heroes Act expands the Paycheck Protection Program to support the local non-profits that play such a vital role in our communities.
"With an unprecedented number of Americans out of work, the Heroes Act extends unemployment assistance to maintain the safety net for tens of millions of Americans.
"We double down on the direct stimulus payments as an effective way to get money in to the hands of those who need it, and out into our local businesses as they begin to reopen their doors.
"House Democrats are fighting for $1 trillion to help state and local governments to cover coronavirus-related expenses, replace losses in revenue, and pay vital workers like first responders, health workers, and teachers.
"Tens of millions of Americans have lost their jobs, millions of small businesses and non-profits are on the brink of closing their doors, and tens of millions of students have had their studies and lives disrupted – all at no fault of their own. Two months into our national coronavirus response, the extent of our needs have become clearer and more urgent.
"The Heroes Act is the bold response our country needs to this unprecedented national emergency to support our fellow Americans."
The Heroes Act provides local communities on the frontlines of this crisis with robust, desperately needed funding to cover coronavirus-related outlays and revenue loss and pay our health care workers, police, fire, transportation, EMS, teachers and other vital workers who keep us safe and are in danger of losing their jobs.
An analysis prepared by the Congressional Research Service estimates that the Heroes Act will provide $26.6 billion over two years in state funding for Florida in addition to urgently needed funding for FL-22 communities, including:
o Broward County - $1.124 billion over two years;
o Palm Beach County - $843 million over two years;
o Fort Lauderdale - $113 million over two years;
o Pompano Beach - $74 million over two years;
o Boca Raton - $32.2 million over two years; and
o Coral Springs - $57 million over two years.