Stimulus Update: 21 States Are Issuing Stimulus Funds. Is Yours on the List?
- The federal government has no plans to issue a stimulus check this year.
- Multiple states are taking stimulus matters into their own hands and issuing payments to residents.
A state stimulus check could be on its way.
For months on end, Americans have been struggling in the wake of rampant inflation. Many people have been forced to dip into their savings accounts, rack up debt, and cut back on spending to cover higher living costs. And while the rate of inflation thankfully dipped in July compared to June, it's still unbelievably high.
Given how costly it's become just to function, you'd perhaps think lawmakers would be invested in dishing out more stimulus aid at the federal level. But so far, there are no plans to issue another round of federal stimulus checks, and understandably so.
For one thing, the U.S. labor market is quite strong -- so strong that all of the jobs that were lost in the course of the pandemic have since been recovered. That alone makes it difficult to justify a round of stimulus aid.
Also, a big reason inflation has been so rampant is that stimulus funds were pumped into the economy at a time when supply chains had slowed down, creating a huge disconnect between supply and demand. The fear is that if another stimulus round is issued, it could worsen the problem rather than solve it.
But while the federal government has no intention of making stimulus dollars available to the public, that doesn't mean everyone is out of luck. Some states are taking stimulus matters into their own hands and are issuing checks to residents. And those in line for those paydays could soon have relief.
States are sharing the wealth
States that have the money in their budgets to dish out stimulus aid are taking that step to help residents cope with the blow of inflation. If you're a resident of one of these states, you may have a modest windfall coming your way:
- New Jersey
- New Mexico
- South Carolina
Keep in mind that even if you live in one of these states, eligibility for aid could hinge on your income. If you're a higher earner, you may not be in line for a payday. It's a good idea to check your state's tax department website for more information about stimulus payments (commonly being referred to as rebate checks) and to see if you qualify.
What to do with your state stimulus check
If you receive a state stimulus check, it's important to put that money to good use. First, if you lack the funds to cover basic expenses like rent or food, you can (and should) use your money for that purpose. Otherwise, you may want to use your payday to shore up your finances -- namely, by adding to your emergency fund (or starting one if you have no savings) or paying down costly credit card debt.
A big reason so many states are able to issue these stimulus payments is that they're sitting on extra money in their budgets. But you can't assume that state stimulus checks will happen on a yearly basis. So if you're getting a windfall, take advantage of that opportunity while you can.
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