My inbox is chock full of people asking me to verify rumors – some of them quite specific and I have to say, just a little bit humorous – that a new stimulus package has been approved. In fact, I’ve been getting these questions for a couple of months now. But the requests for information have recently increased.
Let me just say this: I don’t have any more information than you do. But if you base the answer on information from Congress and the White House instead of chain emails and word of mouth, the result is that there is no news. The status, so far as I know, is exactly as reported before.
Remember, the first round of stimulus checks has not yet been completed. Despite calls from the media and politicians, the White House (and most Congressional officials, it seems) believes that we should wait and see what happens before introducing additional stimulus legislation. In fact, as recently as August 1, White House spokesperson Perrino said: I think the president is not inclined to move forward on a second stimulus package right now.
Part of the energy surrounding this second wind of rumors has to do with Obama’s proposed “emergency economic plan” which proposed an additional check by “fast tracking” a tax credit. Some people believe that the plan has already become law; it has not. It is a proposal from Obama to continue to boost a sagging economy. Let’s just say that Obama wins in November and takes office in January – the bill still must pass Congress before it takes effect. So, despite what you’ve heard or read that reference this “emergency” plan as taking effect before the holidays, it is simply not true.
Likewise, there are no “replacement” checks for college students or those who made too much money to qualify this year. That is, I am sorry to say, wishful thinking. Additionally, seniors and returning vets will also not be receiving bonus checks.
I know that many of you want to believe the rumors and many of you feel that they come from reliable sources (if your accountant really did tell you that another check was coming, shame on him or her!) but so far, nothing has changed from before. It could happen – though I still don’t think it will. I think that any economic stimulus package that is introduced at this point will focus on infrastructure and not rebates. But, of course, I could be wrong.