Congress approves COVID-19 relief package, spending bill; sending to Trump

WASHINGTON — The U.S. Senate and House late Monday passed an enormous year-end bill, combining $900 billion in COVID-19 relief with a $1.4 trillion omnibus spending bill, along with a host of fragmented legislation addressing taxes, energy, health care and education. The legislation now awaits President Donald Trump’s signature.

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Lawmakers reached an agreement in principle late Sunday, hours before a midnight deadline to avoid a government shutdown. Because the agreement did not yet meet legislative standards, both chambers had to approve the one-day stopgap spending bill that gave them an additional 24 hours to finalize the relief package and broader operational spending bill.

Once signed, the omnibus spending bill will fund the government through the remainder of the fiscal year, and direct COVID-19 relief payments could begin reaching bank accounts within one week.

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