APA Advisory - COVID Stimulus Relief Bill Update

July 31, 2020

TO:                , 

SUBJECT:  Association Members Urged to Continue Contacts With Elected Officials

While Congress continues to work through the details of preparing a stimulus relief bill that will satisfy the needs of the nation, we wanted to provide an update on where things stand to-date and once again, urge our members to continue interaction with your elected representatives. This is a long and complicated process and we need to keep the pressure on Congress to act and include small business relief that extends through the end of the year in whatever stimulus package is ultimately negotiated.

Currently, the two primary bills under consideration are HEROES Act and HEALS Act. It is unlikely that either one will end up being the final bill. There are several other ancillary bills that are related as well. The House and Senate are engaged in conversations, discussions and negotiations. It is very unlikely that anything will be delivered over the next few days. 

Earlier this month the APA formally endorsed the RESTART Act in both the House and Senate. RESTART has gained a lot of support but, at the moment, is not included in either the HEROS or HEALS bills. There are 44 Senators and 45 Representatives signed on as sponsors. 

Under the HEALS Act, additional PPP would be funded for 10 weeks which is not sufficient.  We are advocating for 20 weeks of PPP to carry small businesses to the end of the year. There is also a maximum loan value of $2 million dollars and that is simply too small. The HEROES Act does not extend PPP at all. Liability indemnity and enhanced unemployment insurance are also being discussed.   

Far bigger players than our industry are leading these charges and our time and efforts are best spent working toward additional funding. Review this chart to help you understand the offerings of the original CARES Act, HEROES Act and HEALS Act. Please keep in mind that it is very likely that the final bill will be parts of both as well as provisions from other bills, including RESTART. Here is an updated version of the “Why RESTART?” document, with a refreshed list of endorsing business groups.

Call to Action
Please continue the outreach and dialogue with your elected representatives. It is of utmost importance that our legislators are well informed and that our industry is not left behind and is taken care of in the best possible way. We need you to take action immediately as Congress is making decisions now. Here is a  template letter  that you may use to send to your elected representatives. Alternatively, you can send a simple email directly to your representatives stating:

Dear Senator / Representative (name),

We are writing to you about the current stimulus package now being negotiated and we urge you to support financial relief that extends through the end of the year to small family businesses most affected by the COVID-19 pandemic. Help is needed to sustain our family business and bridge the gap to recovery.  We are grateful that Congress boldly provided vital, short-term assistance with the PPP program; however, businesses such as ours are facing prolonged closure and need additional help in the form of long-term, forgivable loans, grants and flexibility in the use of funds to truly meet the unprecedented needs of this time. Your assistance is more important now than ever before.  Thank you for your assistance.

Sincerely, (your name and company)

Thank you to all APA member companies who continue this important congressional outreach and dialogue with your representatives. Our strength is in numbers and we are partnering with numerous organizations representing the live entertainment industry to make certain that we are heard.  

Advisory #2020-36