Gov. Lou Leon Guerrero today signed an executive order expanding the eligibility for a federally-funded local stimulus program to include local and federal government employees and retirees during the tax year 2020.
The original version of the Recovery Income Support and Empowerment (RISE) Act under P.L. 35-136 applied only to private-sector employees, who were making $40,000 and less. The program provides eligible individuals a one-time payment of $800 each and $1,600 for joint filers.
“Ultimately, aid to more families will have a greater impact on the financial well-being of our community," the governor said in announcing her administration's to the program.
The program will be funded through a grant from the American Rescue Plan.
“While I support the intent of the original RISE Act, the law expressly excluded individuals who had been employed by either the federal or local governments at any time during the 2020 tax year," the governor said.
"Unfortunately, this excluded members of our community who spent even just part of the year in government employment, including members of the Guam National Guard who were on military orders and individuals employed in the Department of Labor’s displaced worker programs,” she added.
According to a press release from Adelup, efforts are underway to identify the total amount needed to implement the All RISE Program.
"Once the amount is determined, the Department of Revenue and Taxation (DRT) will implement the program within 30 working days of identification of the required funds," the governor's office said. "As outlined in P.L. 35-136, eligible individuals will be required to register with DRT."
Lt. Gov. Josh Tenorio said the stimulus funds for Guam families will bridge the gap between pandemic response and the island's recovery.
"Our administration continues to look out for our most vulnerable, including our manåmko’ and retirees, many of whom incurred additional costs during this pandemic due to their health and increased risk of severe illness from Covid-19," Tenorio said.