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Insurance Premiums Considered ‘Essential’ in Small Business Comeback Act

Jul 27, 2020

Recently, Rep. Filemon Vela (D-Texas) and Rep. Lance Gooden (R-Texas) introduced the "Small Business Comeback Act." This legislation would create the Small Business Recovery Fund. The America's Recovery Fund Coalition, which the Big “I” is a member of, supports this legislation.

The Small Business Recovery Fund would provide federal grants for operational expenses to help businesses reopen and stay open during the COVID-19 pandemic. The fund would be operated within the Treasury Department by a special administrator. Businesses would apply for a grant online through an easy-to-access form, entering data on operating costs and revenue.

An applicant's grant would be based on the average monthly expense payments by the applicant during the year prior to the date on which an application is made and could cover up to four months of expenses. The decision would be made almost instantly, and money would be distributed quickly, helping businesses recoup lost revenue due to social distancing and forced shutdowns.

Funds would help cover essential operating expenses including rent, utilities, payroll, insurance premiums and state and local taxes to give businesses financial certainty and confidence to reopen. The Big “I” pushed to make sure that insurance premiums were considered an essential operating cost for businesses.

Importantly for Big “I” state and local associations, 501(c)6 organizations such as trade associations would be eligible to participate in the small business recovery fund. The Big “I" has consistently advocated for trade associations to have access to any COVID-19 relief funds that are made available to businesses.

Wyatt Stewart is Big “I” senior director of federal government affairs.