BOSTON - Around 330,000 low-income workers in Massachusetts will receive $500 payment in June as part of the COVID-19 Essential Employee Premium Pay program. Funding for the program comes from the $4 billion spending plan for the American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) funds.
The total cost for this round of funds is $165 million. Those who received a payment in the first round, or received unemployment compensation in 2021, are not eligible.
Payments for the first round, delivered to 480,000 Massachusetts residents, were distributed in March 2022. The two rounds of payments will combine to spend over $400 million of the $460 million allocated to the program.
Residents are eligible for the program if their 2021 Massachusetts tax return showed income of at least $13,500 and their total income was not over 300 percent of the federal poverty line. The lower bound of this range equates to working 20 hours a week for 50 weeks at minimum wage as of 2021 ($13.50)
The upper limit of eligibility is as follows:
For questions about eligibility, a dedicated call center is available at (866) 750-9803 and is open Monday through Friday, 9 AM to 4 PM.
For additional information and a FAQ, visit the Mass.gov website.