Today, Congresswoman Maxine Waters (D-CA), Chairwoman of the House Financial Services Committee, gave the following floor statement on the American Rescue Plan:
Thank you so very much, Mr. Speaker and Members. I would like to thank President Biden and all of the Democratic Leadership for this wonderful and historic piece of legislation that we are voting on here today. This indeed responds to the needs of the American people during this pandemic. This is why I came to Congress - to do this kind of work, and I am so proud to be a Democratic Member of Congress at this time. I want you to know that this bill not only supports education, gives stimulus checks to put food on the table, unemployment assistance, and small businesses will be able to reopen and to stay open, and then everybody will have access to the vaccine that will be made available because of this bill. It has been said more than once that this bill will take children out of poverty; they will be able to depend on regular assistance to them and their families every month. I’m so pleased that as the Chair of the Financial Services Committee, I had in my jurisdiction $77 billion to deal with some very critical issues.
The bill includes critical funding for emergency rental assistance, providing $21.5 billion to pay the back rent and future rent payments owed by millions of struggling families. And that is in urban communities, rural communities, Black, White, Asian, all folks will have access to this rental assistance. Combined with the funding for emergency rental assistance I negotiated in the December stimulus package, and the $5 billion for 70,000 new housing vouchers that are included in this package, this bill is truly historic, and will help people across the nation to remain safely housed. Thank you so very much and I yield back the balance of my time.