DALLAS, March 12, 2021 - With this week’s passage of the American Rescue Plan Act, you might be wondering about the status of relief for the business events industry. While our industry is not specifically named, there are provisions in ARPA that will benefit many of us, and some behind-the-scenes activity that give us hope for passage of the Hospitality and Commerce Jobs Recovery Act, which will directly benefit business events. These include:
- Economic Impact Payments. The plan includes a third round of economic impact payments to qualifying Americans, which will benefit those individuals in our industry who have been out of work for so long.
- Unemployment Benefits. The extension of unemployment benefits will also provide added support for those of us who have not been able to return to work due to the pandemic.
- Paycheck Protection Program. The plan includes $7.25 billion in new funding for the small business loan program and would allow more nonprofits to apply. This program is vital to many small businesses and nonprofits in our industry. While it still requires a vote, it does appear that this program will be extended through May 31.
- Small Business Tax Credit. The plan allows employers experiencing a 20% year-over-year decline in gross receipts a credit based on qualified employee wages with a higher credit available for startup businesses. Additionally, the designation of Economic Injury Disaster Loan (EIDL) advances as exempt income, further supports small businesses on the road to recovery.
- Shuttered Venues. The plan provides $1.25 billion for the Small Business Administration's Shuttered Venue Operators Grant program. While an amendment from Senator Marco Rubio—which would have expanded access to the program to include trade show venue owners, operators and trade show service providers—did not come up for a vote, it demonstrated the impact of our collected advocacy and showed that elected officials are recognizing the needs of the industry.
- Public Health. The additional funding for vaccinations, testing and PPE is, of course, helpful to our industry, as increasing vaccination rates and decreasing cases of COVID-19 will be critical to our ability to reopen sooner.
Now that the American Rescue Plan Act has been passed, we expect Congress to turn their attention to the Hospitality and Commerce Jobs Recovery Act of 2021. And when they do shift focus to this legislation, we will need your support to share the message of its importance to our industry and to the economic recovery of our country. Be on the lookout for details on how you can let your Congress members know you support this bill.
In the meantime, the conversations we are all having are working as we are beginning to see traction with reopening plans in Maryland, Texas, Chicago, and Boston in recent weeks.
Please join our efforts in advocating for what we all already know to be true – nothing in the world will ever replace the power and the need for live events.
Let’s Go LIVE Together! #GoLiveTogether
Visit www.golivetogether.com to learn more information.