Norton Calls for Critical Fix to Senate Coronavirus Bill to Keep D.C. from Losing Hundreds of Millions of Dollars

Mar 25, 2020
Press Release

March 25, 2020

Contact: Sharon Eliza Nichols


WASHINGTON, D.C. – Congresswoman Eleanor Holmes Norton (D-DC) said that the third coronavirus response bill, which is expected to pass the Senate today, would deprive the District of Columbia of hundreds of millions of dollars because it treats D.C. as a territory instead of as a state under the $150 billion relief fund for states and territories established by the bill. She has been in touch with Senate Democrats to seek the usual treatment of D.C. as a state for federal funding.

The District pays more in federal taxes than 22 states and more per capita than any state, has a larger population than two states, and is almost always treated as a state for federal funding, including in the other provisions of the Senate bill.

“I have asked the Senate to fix what I believe was an oversight,” Norton said. “If this was not an oversight by Senate Republicans, who are in the majority, I have asked Senate Democrats to demand that it be fixed before the vote.”

Under the fund, each state is entitled to a minimum of $1.25 billion. D.C. and the territories will split $3 billon, which will be allocated based on population. D.C. will receive an estimated $750 million less under the fund by being treated as a territory.