On Wednesday, Congressional management and the Trump Administration got here to settlement and launched the textual content of an enormous $2 trillion coronavirus aid bundle, the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act. While it’s anticipated to go each chambers of Congress and be signed into legislation by President Trump within the coming days, it’s doable that extra adjustments is perhaps made.
For the time being, provisions of the CARES Act that can present aid to the journey company business, its staff and impartial contractors (ICs) embrace:
- Travel Agencies Eligible for Airline Economic Stabilization Loans ($25 billion) – Under the invoice, the Treasury Secretary is permitted to make as much as $25 billion in loans, mortgage ensures and different investments in help of passenger airways, “ticket agents” (the statutory time period for journey businesses) and different associated aviation companies.
- Small Business Interruption Loans/Paycheck Protection Program ($349 billion) – Under this new U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) mortgage program, loans of as much as $10 million will probably be accessible to U.S. companies below the present SBA dimension requirements ($22 million in annual income) or with 500 or fewer staff. Independent contractors and the self-employed are eligible. There aren’t any collateral or private warranty necessities for these loans. The portion of those loans that covers the enterprise’ payroll, mortgage, lease or utility bills from February 15 to June 30 could also be eligible for forgiveness in complete or partly.
- Economic Stabilization Loans for Severely Distressed Sectors ($425 billion) – Under the invoice, the U.S. Treasury Department can be approved to increase low- or no-interest loans and mortgage ensures to U.S. companies that incurred losses straight or not directly on account of coronavirus. This aid is just open to a “business that has not otherwise received adequate economic relief in the form of loans or loan guarantees provided under this Act,” indicating that companies couldn’t additionally apply for the brand new SBA program (see above).
- Unemployment Benefits for the Self-Employed – The CARES Act would additionally present as much as 39 weeks of unemployment insurance coverage advantages to individuals not in any other case eligible for normal unemployment compensation (together with the self-employed and people who have exhausted their common advantages).
“The coronavirus pandemic has proved to be the biggest challenge ever faced by ASTA and its members,” stated Zane Kerby, president and CEO ASTA. “Over the past few weeks, we have worked hand-in-hand with our 13,000 members to secure the maximum amount of relief for the travel agency community in this package. The fact that travel agencies are included in the airline assistance portion of the bill is a huge win and means that Congress heeded our call to include our members in any targeted travel industry relief.”
In the approaching days, the American Society of Travel Advisors (ASTA) says it’ll analyze the whole lot of the aid bundle for provisions impacting its members and can discover key subjects, reminiscent of how the brand new SBA mortgage program interacts with the Administration’s present Disaster Relief applications. ASTA says it’ll additionally monitor SBA and Treasury/Transportation Department bulletins with regard to how they plan to distribute this aid.
ASTA provides that it despatched over 28,000 grassroots messages to legislators by means of its advocacy web page. It may also maintain a member webinar on Friday, March 27 at three p.m. ET to offer members with a preliminary evaluation.