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Washington rolls out $135M relief package to help state through latest lockdown

A new aid package to help businesses and residents get through the state’s COVID-19 restrictions will total $135 million, Gov. Jay Inslee has announced.

The new aid comes as Washington has entered a new lockdown phase some 250 days after the start of the first restrictions in March. Officials hope the speed of the spread of the virus will slow to a point that the lockdown can be lifted by mid-December.

Inslee said the state is also considering ways to ease the burden from an expected increase in taxes on businesses to replenish the state’s unemployment-benefits fund, a possible “hundreds of millions of dollars” in relief to state businesses, the Seattle Times reports.

The state says the new funding breaks out across small business support, loans, and rental assistance

  • $70 million in business support grants. 
  • $30 million for the recovery loan program.
  • $20 million for rental assistance.
  • $15 million for energy bills for low-income households

State relief also includes a moratorium on commercial and residential evictions through at least the end of the year.

The City of Seattle has compiled information about available relief programs at seattle.gov/mayor/covid-19

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