News from Representative Luria

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Dear Friend,

I had another productive week advocating for Coastal Virginians! This week, I introduced a bill to provide student loan relief to educators, announced the winner of our Congressional Art Competition, pushed for transparency and accountability from the Small Business Administration, and more.


Teacher Loan Forgiveness Improvement Act


Across Coastal Virginia and our country, teachers are facing rising levels of student debt. After the Institute for College Access found that the average debt of graduates from the class of 2018 was $29,200, it became clear that we must update current legislation to support educators.

On Friday, I introduced the Teacher Loan Forgiveness Improvement Act, which provides a much-needed update to the Teacher Loan Forgiveness Program (TLFP). Under TLFP, highly qualified teachers may have up to $17,500 forgiven, while teachers without the distinction only qualify to have $5,000 forgiven. My bill would increase TLFP’s loan forgiveness amount to $30,000 for math, science, and special education teachers and $5,000 for other teachers.


Announcing the Winners of Our Congressional Art Competition


Recently, I announced the winner of our second annual Congressional Art Competition. The winning submission, entitled “Distorted by Disease” came from Christina Liu of Princess Anne High School in Virginia Beach.

 

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Distorted by Disease by Christina Liu of Princess Anne High School

 

It is always an honor to showcase the gifts of our talented students from Coastal Virginia. I thank all the participating students and the panel of judges from the Eastern Shore, Peninsula, and Southside who made this possible. To view all our impressive submissions from the Congressional Art Competition as well as our regional winners, please view our VA-02 Art Gallery page.


Pressing the IRS to Address Accessibility Issues Impacting Stimulus Payments


It is unacceptable that the IRS does not provide a telephone line to allow constituents to receive or provide updates on their Economic Impact Payments (EIP). As a result, people without internet access must wait until next year’s tax filing season to claim their child add-on payment.

As rural and urban communities alike are struggling to make ends meet during this pandemic, it is critical that the IRS and the Treasury Department provide equal access to families without reliable access to broadband. That’s why I joined Congressman Troy Balderson (OH-12) in calling upon Commissioner of the IRS Charles Rettig and Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin to address these accessibility issues. Our letter asks Secretary Mnuchin and Commissioner Rettig if they can consider several options to help constituents who lack internet access to update their information for their EIPs.


Demanding Transparency and Accountability from the Small Business Administration


In March, I voted for the CARES Act, which requires the Small Business Administration to provide grants of up to $10,000 in the form of Economic Injury Disaster Loans (EIDL). Unfortunately, the Small Business Administration’s (SBA) rollout of this program has been marred by complications and delays. Many businesses across Coastal Virginia have been waiting for nearly a month without updates on the status of their grant applications. It is unacceptable that many local businesses have yet to receive this necessary assistance and remain uncertain of the status of their application.

Recently, I joined Congressman Brad Schneider (IL-10) to urge the SBA to quickly and transparently process EIDL applications and provide updates to small businesses that applied for an EIDL. This effort requests that the SBA implement certain features to improve the implementation of EIDL and to ensure relief for small businesses. These include creating an application queue and providing applicants with status updates on their EIDL application.

 

In the News

Please know that during this trying time, my team and I stand ready to serve our community. For helpful resources to help you and your family navigate through this public health emergency, please see here. If you have any questions, feel free to reach out to our offices via the numbers below.

Sincerely,

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