WHILE MANY IN the hotel industry welcome the $2.2 trillion Coronavirus Aid, Relief, & Economic Security Act, several organizations are still pressing for more federal relief. The U.S. Travel Association has a list of modifications it would like to see included in future stimulus legislation.
The USTA proposals include:
- Expanding eligibility for the Payroll Protection Program to destination marketing organizations that are classified as 501(c)(6) non-profits or “political subdivisions” of their local governments, as well as small businesses that operate multiple locations with fewer than 500 employees per location.
- Appropriating another $600 billion for the PPP and extending the coverage period, currently set to expire on June 30, through December.
- Raising the PPP maximum loan calculation to eight times a business’ monthly outlays and allowing it to cover both payroll and non-payroll expenses. Currently the formula is 2.5x and covers payroll only, not other expenses.
- Providing loan forgiveness to large businesses under the Exchange Stabilization Fund rather than just loan guarantees and clarifying ESF eligibility for 501(c)(6) non-profits.
- Increasing Economic Injury Disaster Loan funding to $50 billion, raising the loan cap from $2 million to $10 million and allowing a second EIDL if a business is still unable to meet its ordinary expenses.
“Congress must move swiftly to correct and supplement the CARES Act with additional rounds of aid,” said Roger Dow, USTA president and CEO. “Travel-related small businesses will be vital leaders of an economic recovery, but first they need to survive until the point when travel demand returns. In order to make it, these businesses need to be able to access the resources that will enable them to keep the lights on and retain their employees.”
USTA also has prepared a detailed treatment of its proposals for subsequent rounds of coronavirus relief legislation.
AAHOA and the American Hotel & Lodging Association also are pressing for more money to be added to the program. Both supported a plan put forward by Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell and House Speaker Nancy Pelosi to add $250 billion to the PPP and other loan programs in the stimulus package.