October 2, 2020: BREAKING—House Passes Updated COVID-19 Relief Package

Gusto Editors

October 2, 2020

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Relief in the works

On Thursday night, the House of Representatives passed a revised version of the Health and Economic Recovery Omnibus Emergency Solutions (HEROES) Act, a stimulus package meant to extend coronavirus relief. The new $2.2 trillion bill—down $1.2 trillion from the original proposal—aims to replenish relief funds for businesses and workers, CNBC reports:

The Democratic bill would:

  • Reinstate the $600 per week enhanced unemployment benefit through January
  • Send a second $1,200 direct payment to most Americans 
  • Give $436 billion in relief over one year to state and local governments 
  • Authorize more money for a second round of Paycheck Protection Program loans for the hardest-hit businesses and industries 
  • Send $25 billion to airlines to cover payroll costs 
  • Inject $75 billion into Covid-19 testing and contact tracing efforts
  • Put $225 billion into education and $57 billion into child care 
  • Set aside billions for rental and mortgage assistance

Notable for small employers is a potential new round of Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) loans that would be targeted at the businesses that need it most. While the bill is expected to face opposition in the Senate, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi has expressed optimism about reaching a deal.

Watch list: Everything you need to know about PPP forgiveness 

For many PPP borrowers, the covered period has recently ended and the window to apply for PPP forgiveness has begun. This comes with questions:

  • What information do I need to apply for forgiveness?
  • Which application should my business use?
  • How much forgiveness am I eligible for?

Gusto is partnering with COVID Loan Tracker and the Small Business Administration (SBA) to help answer these questions. Our upcoming webinar will walk through the PPP forgiveness application process, answer your FAQs, and cover the latest updates from the SBA.

The webinar date and time will be announced next week. Follow us on Twitter or sign up for notifications on our blog to make sure you don’t miss it.

Headlines from the week

Top relief options for the week

  • North Carolina Department of Administration has launched a $12 million grant program, RETOOLNC, to help North Carolina historically underutilized businesses (HUB) and disadvantaged business enterprise (DBE) firms impacted by COVID-19. 
  • City of El Paso, Texas is utilizing CARES Act funding to provide grants to small businesses and nonprofit organizations impacted financially by COVID-19. 
  • City of Davenport, Iowa has launched the Small Business Resiliency Project, providing $900,000 in Community Development Block Grant funds to help retain jobs and stabilize local businesses. 
  • See more relief options in our Small Business Relief Finder.

Want more small business news and resources? Check out past editions in our archive.

Gusto Editors Gusto Editors, contributing authors on Gusto, provide actionable tips and expert advice on HR and payroll for successful business management.
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