If you are one of more than 100 million Americans who hoping for a promised $600-$1,200 government rebate checks, you could get them sooner than expected.
A new measure agreed upon by lawmakers worth $170 billion provides the rebates. The hope is that by getting the money into the hands of Americans, the faltering economy would get a shot in the arm.
Republicans and Democrats in the Senate agreed on a measure that adds rebates for some 20 million seniors and 250,000 disabled veterans. People in these categories would get $300 rebate checks.
The measure approved by the Senate ensured that illegal workers would not get any checks.
"We're on the verge here of an important bipartisan accomplishment," said Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky.
The agreement came only after measures to add 13 weeks of jobless benefits, home heating help and tax refunds for struggling companies and coal producers were dropped.
"We all have to acknowledge that the House bill has been improved significantly. We'll be back and do more things to help stimulate the economy," Majority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nev. said.
The measure in the Senate passed 91-6. It now heads back to the House where lawmakers will have to vote again to approve the rebates.