PROVIDENCE, R.I. (WPRI) — Unemployment numbers remain high in Rhode Island as talks continue in the nation’s capital regarding more COVID-19 relief.
Rhode Island’s unemployment claim numbers, as of Oct. 18, stand at 578,843. Though the rate has dropped slightly from August to September, it’s still higher than the national average, which rests at 7.9%.
12 Responds continues to receive questions regarding additional economic stimulus payments, including one from a viewer asking: “Are we going to get another stimulus check?”
House Speak Nancy Pelosi continued talks Monday with Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin. She told CNN Sunday she’s “optimistic” the next coronavirus relief package will pass soon.
“We put pen to paper and have been writing the bill ─ based on what we hope will be the outcome – what they said they would get back to us on,” Pelosi said.
Pelosi went on to explain that lawmakers need to “follow the science.”
The bill is said to include funding for additional testing and vaccines, another round of one-time stimulus payments to adult Americans across the nation, bonus payments to Americans receiving UI benefits and additional aid to schools and local governments.
On Monday, White House National Economic Council Director Larry Kudlow said the more the assistance package narrows, “the more conditions come up on the other side.”
“We don’t need a gigantic bill with a lot of areas, and this is the issue, that have nothing to do with COVID or the economy, you see. We can fight that out over the election in a week. Or afterwards,” Kudlow said.
Since May, House Democrats have passed two bills. Pelosi is hoping for a $2.2 Trillion relief package before next Tuesday, but it’s unclear if both sides will agree.