Local Economists Discuss Coronavirus Aid Relief as Politicians Spar Over Decision

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Certain industries continue to wait in limbo, hopeful that lawmakers can strike a deal on a coronavirus package supported by both democrats and republicans before it’s too late.

On Thursday, the Democratic bill passed in the House of Representatives, garnering a 214-207 vote. Some people figured the House vote meant a coronavirus relief package would now be within grasp for millions of Americans, but lawmakers couldn’t be further apart on a deal.

The $2.2 trillion package has the backing of democrats but is likely to fail in the GOP-led Senate. Democrats and republicans remain divided on the details of the package.

Regina Trevino, an economics professor at the University of San Diego, said it all comes down to dollars and cents.

“And with this new package that’s about to be approved, if it’s approved, that debt would only increase right and at this level, would be a burden in future generations,” she told NBC 7.

A burden that only adds to an already piling national debt, she said.

The current relief package under consideration is a slimmed-down version of the Heroes Act, which first passed in May. The original bill came with a $3.4 trillion price tag and was scoffed by republicans. The bill also passed in the House but failed the minute it reached the Senate.

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi told MSNBC Friday that an agreement will be reached, despite the difficult back-and-forth sparring unfolding publicly between both sides. Pelosi told MSNBC she will not back down and that republicans need to loosen their purse strings to help people navigate a trying time.

It's a bill with provisions that includes another round of $1,200 stimulus checks, extending the $600 weekly unemployment benefits and offering aid money to help struggling industries like the airlines.

Airlines continue to stand by, hoping a firmed-out coronavirus relief package manifests.

This week, NBC 7 spoke with Alan Gin, who works as an economics professor at the University of San Diego. He said the relief bill could only help the industry’s teetering situation so much.

"It will give airlines a little bit of a lifeline for a while, but they aren’t going to recover until the public starts traveling again," he said.

Gin said the industry has taken a substantial hit, with airlines seeing a sharp 180-degree turn with the onset of COVID-19. He also warned that furloughs are just the beginning.

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