Detroit Regional Chamber > COVID-19 Federal Relief Package Becomes Law

COVID-19 Federal Relief Package Becomes Law

December 28, 2020
Six days after Republicans and Democrats in both chambers in Congress and the Trump Administration reached a long-delayed compromise to provide extended COVID-19 relief to American families and businesses, President Trump last night finally signed this legislation into law. In addition to the assistance covered in the bipartisan legislation, this bill includes a broader federal budget agreement, averting a federal government shutdown which would have begun Tuesday. With the President’s signature, the compromise legislation will be enacted without any alteration.

Key provisions include:

Expanded Paycheck Protection Program (PPP)

  • Businesses that previously received, and utilized, a PPP loan are eligible to apply again for a new loan.
  • Maximum PPP loan amount is reduced from $10 million to $2 million for all applicants.
  • Loan forgiveness processes for existing and new PPP loans have been streamlined.
  • 501(c)(6) entities are now eligible.
  • Total available funds limited to $284 billion, far smaller than the initial PPP loan fund and with specific dollars set-aside for very small businesses and minority-owned businesses.
  • Application forms are still being developed – your financial institution will have updated information in the days to come.

New Stimulus Payments to Individuals

  • One-time $600 payments to individuals (e.g. $1,800 for a couple with one child).
  • Limitations mirror the first round of stimulus payments in the Spring (2019 income of $75,000 or less, joint filer of $150,000 or less, with decreasing payments up to individuals of $99,000, and joint filer of $199,000).
  • Payments should begin processing within 10 days, with the bulk of the distribution to occur in Q1 2021.

Expanded Unemployment Benefits

  • Continues extended eligibility of unemployment benefits for those unemployed for an extended period.
  • Continues extended eligibility of unemployment benefits for independent contractors (gig economy workers).
  • Implements an additional $300 weekly federal unemployment benefit, in addition to existing state unemployment payments.
  • The delay in signing the legislation will result in the loss of these unemployment benefits for the past week.

Other Notable Elements

  • $25 billion in rental assistance.
  • One-month extension of federal eviction moratorium.
  • $82 billion to help educational institutions adapt to the COVID-19 environment.
  • $15 billion to support theaters, museums, and other live venue establishments.
  • $10 billion in child care assistance.
  • Expanded federal food assistance programs (e.g. SNAP and EBT programs) and aid to food banks.
  • $15 billion to support airline industry payroll and an additional $1 billion to support airports.
  • Support for other public transit entities and energy programs.
  • $20 billion to states specifically for vaccine distribution and COVID-19 testing and additional funds available for hospitals and health care providers.

For more information view the U.S. Chamber’s guide to emergency loans for businesses.

For companies interested in applying for a new PPP loan, the Chamber strongly urges you to promptly consult with your financial institution and tax advisor to ensure you have the latest information as elements are still evolving, and are prepared to act once the loan funds become available.