Over the weekend, President Trump signed a massive $2.3 trillion coronavirus relief and government funding bill, averting a government shutdown that was due to start on Tuesday if an agreement was not reached beforehand.
The bill includes a $900 billion COVID-19 relief package, which extends unemployment benefits for millions of United States workers. U.S. citizens will also receive $600 in stimulus payments. The package also contains several key benefits for construction firms. Here's the high points for your business:
- As stated above, all qualifying individuals will receive $600 stimulus checks.
- The funding measure includes $10 billion set aside to address shortfalls in state transportation revenues.
- The package also reaffirms that construction businesses that benefitted from the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) loans will not be subject to increased taxes in the coming year because of the loan amounts. Associated General Contractors of America Chief Executive Officer Stephen Sandherr said the following on the subject, "... Given that demand for many types of commercial construction projects is likely to remain soft in 2021, the administration’s plan to tax firms for their forgiven loan amount would have cost many construction jobs. Instead, the new recovery measure will preserve many of the original benefits of the Paycheck Protection Program, something our association has worked aggressively to ensure."
- The measure sets aside an additional $285 billion for PPP loans for businesses.
- The new legislation puts a maximum borrowable amount of $2 million on the loans, and they are only available to businesses with fewer than 300 employees that experienced at least a 25%drop in sales from a year earlier in at least one quarter.
- The measure extended unemployment assistance programs for an estimated 12 million Americans, but those beneficiaries will be receiving less as part of the new measure.
- The legislation sets aside $70 billion to fund the distribution and organization of vaccines to the public for state and local public health systems.
- Infrastructure was not left behind—$7 billion was set aside for expanding access to high-speed internet connections.