Sen. Kelly Secures COVID-19 Relief for Arizona Seniors, Families, and Small Business Owners

Key priorities include funding for vaccines, tribal and local governments, nutritional assistance, and caregiver aid

Arizona Senator Mark Kelly secured funding for key Arizona priorities in the proposed COVID-19 relief package that will get families $1,400 direct checks, extend unemployment insurance, fund essential senior services, make a historic investment in emergency funding for tribal nations, provide additional funding for vaccine distribution, deliver aid to local and tribal governments, allocate money to help schools open safely, and get small businesses the support they need to keep their doors open. 

“I’ve talked with Arizona seniors, small business owners, educators, workers, mayors and others about how this pandemic has impacted them and their communities. It has been my top priority to get our state the resources we need to beat this virus and help those who need it most right now. This COVID-19 relief bill is going to provide immediate support to Arizona working families and small businesses, help reopen schools safely, get vaccines into peoples’ arms more quickly, and start getting our economy back on track,” said Senator Mark Kelly. 

In this COVID-19 relief package, Kelly successfully secured a proposal to allocate nearly $1.5 billion to continue providing essential services, ensuring continued federal support for seniors with $460 million for vaccination outreach and other programming, $750 million for nutrition services, $44 million for evidence-based disease prevention and health promotion services, $145 million for caregiver support services, $25 million to carry out demonstrations and evaluations under the Act, including funding to support multigenerational engagement, and $10 million for the long-term care ombudsman program.

Another Kelly-supported proposal in the COVID-19 relief bill establishes a grant program at the Small Business Administration to help local governments, chambers of commerce, and other business organizations create Community Navigator programs to assist small businesses with the application process for the Paycheck Protection Program and other small business relief. This would include grants to organizations that provide bilingual assistance and outreach to rural and tribal businesses.

Kelly has continued to focus on getting Arizonans the relief needed to tackle this public health and economic crisis. In addition to the investments above, see the breakdown of other key COVID-19 relief important to Arizonans:

Funding for Vaccine Distribution, Testing and Contact Tracing 

  • $50 billion for COVID-19 testing and contact tracing.
  • $20 billion for improved vaccine distribution and administration.
  • Nearly $8 billion for the public health workforce.
  • And $10 billion to procure PPE and other medical equipment.

Financial Relief for Families and Individuals 

  • The relief package will provide most families with a $1,400 direct payment per adult and an additional $1,400 per dependent, including for both children and non-child dependents. 
  • It will also give tax breaks to working families, extend enhanced federal unemployment benefits and provide additional funds for housing and nutrition assistance.

Support for Small Businesses

  • This package provides an additional $7.25 billion for the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) and adds $15 billion for the Targeted Economic Injury Disaster Loan (EIDL) Advance program to help the hardest-hit small businesses.
  • It establishes a $25 billion Restaurant Revitalization fund to help Arizona restaurants keep their doors open and their workers employed.
  • It also establishes a Community Navigator pilot program to improve access to COVID-19 relief, especially for underserved communities.

Funding to Safely Reopen Schools

  • $130 billion to help K-12 schools and institutions of higher education reopen safely for in-person learning and address students’ needs. 
  • It will also make significant public health investments that will slow the spread of COVID-19 and make communities safer for students and their families.

Support for Seniors 

  • Nearly $1.5 billion for the aging network to continue providing essential services, such as meal deliveries, vaccine outreach and programming, and caregiver support. 

Historic Emergency Funding for Tribal Nations

  • $31.2 billion investment into tribal nations.
  • The investment includes $20 billion for tribal governments to fight COVID-19 and support their communities.
  • $6 billion for the Indian Health Service.
  • $850 million for Native education programs. 
  • $500 million set aside under the Department of Health and Human Services to fund drinking water and wastewater projects in rural and tribal communities, critical to slowing the spread of COVID-19.