Congress Agrees to a New $900 Billion COVID-19 Relief Bill

Over the weekend, lawmakers in Congress came to a bipartisan agreement on a new $900 billion COVID-19 relief bill. The bill, which is expected to be passed by Congress and signed by President Trump on December 21, will provide more funding for the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP), increase unemployment benefits, and offer a second round of direct stimulus payments to more than 150 million Americans.

Here are some important details of the new legislation:

  • $284 billion for loans through PPP—and as part of the new legislation, businesses will be able to apply for a second PPP loan, even if they have already received a previous loan through the program; in addition, the application process for loans under $150,000 will be simplified to a one-page application and 501(c)(6) organizations will now be fully eligible for PPP funding
  • IRS language fix—the new bill clarifies language ensuring business expenditures made with PPP loans will be tax deductible
  • $300 per week in enhanced unemployment insurance benefits for 11 weeks after passage
  • $600 direct stimulus payment (and an additional $600 per child) to individuals making less than $75,000 a year
  • Tax credit for employees offering paid sick leave and extending the Employee Retention Tax Credit
  • Increase in funding for vaccine purchasing and distribution.

The eligibility of 501(c)(6) organizations for PPP funding and a legislative fix to clarify PPP business expenditures were both legislative priorities for NGWA and we are encouraged to see their inclusion in this bill.

NGWA will continue to monitor this legislation and provide updates to its membership and industry as they become available. NGWA encourage all of its members to utilize any of these programs if needed to keep its essential businesses open during these uncertain times.