WASHINGTON – As negotiations continue over a second COVID-19 relief package in Washington, Congressman Tom Reed (R-Corning) says state and local government funding remains a key sticking point in discussions, along with concerns over liability.
During a conference call on Wednesday, Reed said that lawmakers are keying in on a $908 billion spending plan that would focus in in several key areas.
“It would be focusing on relief for individuals and small businesses in particular, as well as providing for food security… and our housing area. There’s money in there for recognizing folks – don’t want to have people evicted but we also want to make sure rents are being paid so the small landowner can continue to get resources to keep their property in good condition,” Reed said.
Reed also noted that funding will also need to be included to assist with vaccination roll out.
But, the Corning Republican also said there remains disagreement between the House and Senate on a couple of issues.
“The issue of state and local government, tied with liability reform, in my opinion go hand-in-hand in regards to the traditional handshake deal that needs to happen to get this done,” Reed added.
Despite the ongoing differences, Reed feels an agreement is just around the corner and could be finalized as soon as early next week. On Thursday morning he joined 30 other Republican House Members in sending a letter to congressional leaders in both the House and Senate requesting a guarantee that a vote on a bipartisan emergency relief package take place.
“The $908 billion emergency relief framework outlined by a bipartisan group of House members and Senators is the framework that can pass both chambers and reach the President’s desk for a signature,” the letter stated. “We cannot leave Washington without reaching a bipartisan, bicameral deal. We respectfully request you guarantee a vote will be held on an emergency relief bill before Congress ends this legislative session. Let’s get this done.”