The House of Representatives has approved President Joe Biden's huge stimulus plan, which could provide the City of Fontana with $52 million and the Fontana Unified School District with $101.8 million if it is passed by the Senate in its current form, according to Rep. Pete Aguilar (D-31st District).
"In addition to providing resources to ramp up vaccine distribution and establish new community vaccination sites, the legislation also provides direct stimulus checks of up to $1,400 for most Americans, provides funding to help safely reopen schools, and gives critical assistance to small businesses," according to a press release sent by Aguilar on Feb. 27.
The bill includes nearly $350 billion for state, local and tribal governments and more than $130 billion for city and county governments, Aguilar said. San Bernardino County would receive $430 million under the plan.
Fontana Mayor Acquanetta Warren has been hoping that the legislation would pass because the city has lost millions of dollars as a result of the coronavirus crisis.
“Right now, Inland Empire residents, families and small businesses are working to make ends meet during a once in a generation crisis, and they deserve relief," said Aguilar, whose district includes part of Fontana. "The American Rescue Plan delivers the funding and resources our community needs to get more residents vaccinated, get money into the pockets of those who need it, get our kids safely back in school, and keep our small businesses operating. This is a key step forward in President Biden’s plan to build back better, and I will continue to work with the Biden Administration and my colleagues in Congress to deliver additional relief to help the Inland Empire bounce back from this crisis."
Rep. Norma Torres (D-35th District), who also represents part of Fontana, praised the relief package, which was approved by a vote of 219-212.
She said that she hopes the bill can be approved quickly by the Senate so that it could reach Biden for his signature no later than March 14. However, there is expected to be opposition to the bill by Senate Republicans.
“Congress delivered a down payment of COVID relief in December, and today we passed a package that would make it whole,” Torres said. “The American Rescue Plan fulfills President Biden’s commitment to provide $2,000 to every struggling American, and delivers urgently-needed resources to distribute vaccines, keep our first responders on the job, and reopen our schools safely. This is exactly the kind of investment that can help Los Angeles and San Bernardino counties continue their decline in case rates, and allow us to finally emerge from the most restrictive COVID tiers in California.”