On April 21, the Senate passed an interim package to provide worth $484 billion to small businesses and hospitals. The House is expected to pass the bill, and the President has promised to sign the legislation. The bill includes:
- $310 billion for the Paycheck Protection Program
- $30 billion PPP set aside for small banks and credit unions
- $30 billion PPP set aside for Community Development Finance Institutions
- $75 billion for reimbursement to hospitals and healthcare providers to support the need for COVID-19 related expenses and lost revenue
- $25 billion for COVID-19 testing
State and local governments will need to wait until the next bill to get financial relief from the federal government. Discussions about including the Coronavirus Community Relief Act or using the funds from the Coronavirus Relief Fund in the CARES Act to offset lost revenue did not come to fruition in this bill.
Senate and House leadership have stated that at the "top list" in a fourth package will be robust funding for state and local governments. This is consistent with what GMA and city officials have heard from Senator Perdue, Senator Loeffler and other members of Georgia’s congressional delegation. The Administration is also supportive of this action in the fourth bill. On Twitter, President Donald Trump said: "After I sign this Bill, we will begin discussions on the next Legislative initiative with fiscal relief to State/Local Governments for lost revenue from COVID 19."
The discussions on the next package will start immediately, but a final bill could take until Memorial Day to get to the floor.
GMA is also continuing to push HR 6467, the Coronavirus Community Relief Act and the Senate companion bill, which creates a pot of $250 billion for cities, towns and villages with a population of less than 500,000. This legislation will help cities that did not get direct aid from the Coronavirus Relief Fund in the CARES Act.
Finally, in terms of GMA’s work on the fourth package, we will update our request and continue to work with Congressional offices as they propose solutions.
GMA is grateful for the advocacy of our city leaders over these last few weeks. Your hard work has helped lay the groundwork for support of state and local assistance for communities of all sizes. Through your stories, Congress members are starting to understand what your cities are going through, that you are facing this crisis head on and it is imperative that the federal government provide support for our nation’s cities. However, our work is far from over. Please continue to stay in touch with delegation members in the coming weeks, use the GMA template letter and talking points, which are linked below, and contact Becky Taylor of the GMA staff for any questions or assistance.
The link to the new guidance for the Coronavirus Community Relieve Act is available here.