Inslee’s $40M For Undocumented is 4X More Than Small Business Relief
Gov. Inslee announced this week that $40 million dollars has been set aside to help what he referred to as "undocumented workers" in WA who do not have access to Federal help, because of their immigration status.
He put this quote on his Facebook page:
"COVID-19 does not care about your immigration status."
This comes as a stark contrast to the almost insulting Working Washington Small business grants, which back in May doled out about $10 million dollars to small businesses across the state. It was done in two $5 million phases. According to the figures we saw, the grants helped a total of about 11-1200 businesses.
According to Business Insider, back in May, there are approximately 608,000 small businesses in WA state. about 1.4 million people are employed by these outfits. Some are larger (a ten man plumbing outfit, or 25 construction workers) or a 3 person espresso stand. Those figures break down to an average of 2.3 workers for each business. But you get the point. That figure is based upon business licenses with the state.
To be fair, regardless of who the Governor or legislative officials are, you cannot expect the state to fork over, say, 1 billion dollars to 'bail out' every small business.
But, this $40 million for basically illegal workers is four times the amount set aside to help many of the businesses that some of these workers probably work for.
Months ago, legislators and critics said Inslee trumpeted these Working Washington grants as a political ploy, to make it look like efforts were being made.
It's worth noting this $10 million is the ONLY direct WA state aid that has been made to small businesses since the COVID lockdown in late March. There have been other relief efforts and grants, but they have come from Federal origins and sources.
An interesting note: Working Washington grants, $10 million. The amount the Benton Franklin Health District could exceed it's budget by due to COVID and Contact Tracing programs? $3 million.