Residents of Wilkes-Barre Will Receive Pandemic Stimulus Money if They Qualify | Check Now!
Stimulus checks worth $300 were distributed to eligible homes in the city on Monday, as part of Mayor George Brown’s intention to disburse millions of dollars in federal aid from the American Rescue Plan, which he announced last year.
The one-time payments come from the $37.1 million in ARP financing Wilkes-Barre received in 2020 as part of a broader $1.9 trillion financial relief package targeted at helping the country recover from the ongoing COVID-19 outbreak.
The initiative was developed in collaboration with the Commission on Economic Opportunity. Berkheimer Tax Innovations, the company in charge of the city’s earned income tax filings, was also engaged. On the website wilkesbarrestimulus.org, you can learn more about the program.
The city outlined the conditions for tax-filing, resident families in a press release:
• Everyone living in a single home unit, regardless of relationship, is considered a household.
• Residency begins on March 13, 2020, the day the epidemic began and must be maintained until the end of the pandemic.
• Financial eligibility is determined using the 2020 tax filing, which validates that gross income is at or below 80% of the Area Median Income for the year. The AMI for a one-person household is $40,150; for two, $45,900; for three, $51,650; for four, $57,350; for five, $61,950; for six, $66,550; for seven, $71,150; and for eight and up, $75,750.
• Someone in a tax-filing household has either filed their 2020 earned income taxes, had their 2020 income tax taken from their paychecks, or paid their 2020 Per Capita Tax. Berkheimer Tax Innovations is in charge of filing taxes.
Brown set aside $3.5 million for stimulus payments, the greatest portion of the ARP funds for the three partnered programs. A total of $1 million has been awarded to the Greater Wyoming Valley Chamber of Commerce for economic development support for new enterprises. The United Way of Wyoming Valley was given another $1.1 million to disburse to nonprofit human service groups.
According to ARP guidelines, each of the partners was authorized to keep 10% of the funds to operate the programs.
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Residents who believe they are qualified should be patient and wait for the checks to arrive, according to the city.
A cheque will be mailed to eligible residents whose tax information is on file with Berkheimer.
Residents who have already paid their Per Capita Tax to Berkheimer will get a letter with additional application instructions.
Residents who did not get a check or information in the mail will have the option to inquire about their eligibility at a later date. Until then, contacting the mayor, the CEO, or Berkheimer will yield no results.