President Biden signed into law the American Rescue Plan Act today, a day ahead of schedule due to a speedy transmission of the legislation by the House. The $1.9 trillion COVID-19 relief bill forms the centerpiece of the Biden administration’s initial legislative agenda.

From a Fed tech standpoint, the biggest new investments in the bill include $1 billion for the Technology Modernization Fund (TMF) and $650 million for the Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Administration (CISA), as well as $7.17 billion for an emergency connectivity fund and $2 billion for state unemployment insurance infrastructure.

“In the weeks that this bill has been discussed and debated, it’s clear that an overwhelming percentage of American people – Democrats, independents, and Republican friends – people out there have made it clear they strongly support the American Rescue Plan. Yesterday was the final passage of the plan in the House of Representatives. Their voices were heard and reflect reflected in everything we have in this bill,” President Biden said at today’s signing.

“And I believe this is – and most people I think do as well – this historic legislation is about rebuilding the backbone of this country,” President Biden said.

The signing of the bill – passed by the Senate March 6 and the House March 10 – completes a month-long reconciliation process, and takes effect shortly before a variety of unemployment programs are due to expire.

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Lamar Johnson
Lamar Johnson
Lamar Johnson is a MeriTalk Senior Technology Reporter covering the intersection of government and technology.