Rep. Maloney Meets with Williamsburg/Greenpoint Small Businesses to Discuss Effects of COVID-19

Aug 13, 2020
Press Release

New York, NY – Today, Congresswoman Maloney (NY-12) met with Williamsburg and Greenpoint small business owners to discuss the difficulties their businesses faced during the COVID-19 crisis. Organized in partnership with the North Brooklyn Chamber of Commerce, the Congresswoman met with Row House, Bar Method, Bagel Point, and Slick Willie Table & Bar. She responded to concerns and put forth her efforts to pass relief and aid to small businesses, and its employees, in the COVID-19 stimulus packages.

“Small businesses and its employees are ingrained in the cultural and economic fabric of Williamsburg and Greenpoint,” said Rep. Maloney. “The meeting today brought to the forefront the tragic hand that small businesses, and its employees, were dealt during the COVID-19 crisis. I look forward to working with them further and bringing their concerns back to D.C. as we negotiate another round of COVID-19 relief. I was proud to be a part of the important negotiations for the CARES  and HEROES Acts, which provided much needed aid to small businesses and their hardworking employees. The pandemic has had a sustained impact on small businesses and the recent expiration of the $600 in additional unemployment benefits has made the situation increasingly difficult. It is clear that we have a lot more work to do to re-build and make owning and working at a small business - not only feasible – but sustainable. Small businesses will face issues including supply chain disruptions, paying rent, and processing PPP applications and EIDL loans well beyond the acute COVID-19 crisis.

"It is imperative to the long-term stability of both businesses and their employees to keep them on payroll. I remain committed to fighting to give an additional round of funding to the Paycheck Protection Program, as well as extend the $600 federal unemployment insurance in the Heroes Act. PPP was the most successful and the most popular relief program in the CARES Act. It helped small businesses who had to shut down — through no fault of their own — keep their employees on payroll and stay in business. It is critical that we reauthorize PPP and allow small businesses to take a second PPP loan. If we do not, we are at risk of millions of small businesses failing, and millions of employees laid off, which will only make the recession worse. This is dependent on the negotiations of the next COVID relief package. Additional funding is greatly needed for PPP as the remaining $145 billion won’t be enough to keep small businesses – and its employees - alive. Republicans want to restrict the eligibility for a second PPP loan to only those businesses that have suffered severe economic losses, but this is not feasible and will stand in the way of desperately needed relief. Congress must act to give small businesses stronger protections and the support they need to keep their doors open and their staff employed.  Our city is depending on them."

Background

During the COVID-19 crisis, Congresswoman Maloney has been a vocal champion of federal support for New York City small businesses.  She is a proud supporter of the CARES and HEROES Acts and has called for extensions and expansions of the Payroll Protection Program (PPP) and Economic Injury Disaster Loan (EIDL) program.

Throughout the pandemic, Congresswoman Maloney has had ongoing dialogues with the North Brooklyn, Brooklyn, Queens, and Manhattan Chambers of Commerce and participated in a March 29th virtual town hall hosted by the Queens Chamber of Commerce. She has also hosted several townhalls with NY-12 constituents and small business owners and has attended townhalls to discuss relief for small businesses in the district with the Queens Chamber of Commerce, Manhattan Community Board Five, Lower East Side Business Improvement District, the North Brooklyn Small Business Forum, the New York City Employment and Training Coalition, and others

These conversations convinced her of the vital need for business interruption insurance to include coverage for pandemics.  She introduced the Pandemic Risk Insurance Act (PRIA) modeling it off her successful post-9/11 Terrorism Risk Insurance Act.  PRIA would require insurance companies to offer business interruption insurance policies — including event cancellation — that include pandemics.

Additionally, Congresswoman Maloney has been a vocal supporter of efforts on the local and federal level to give relief to residential and commercial renters during the pandemic. She is a cosponsor of the Emergency Rental Assistance and Rental Market Stabilization Act of 2020 and the Rent and Mortgage Cancellation Act of 2020, legislation that would provide federal funding to cover rents during the pandemic.  She continues to fight for more federal funding for New York State and New York City so that local solutions such as Senator Gianaris’s and Senator Kavanaugh’s proposals for rent relief programs can be implemented.

On April 3, 2020, the Paycheck Protection Program started in order to fund small businesses with enough money to keep their employees on payroll for 2 months and required small businesses to spend all of their PPP loans within 8 weeks.

On April 24, 2020, after running out of money, Congress authorized an additional $320 billion for PPP.

On May 14, 2020, Congresswoman Maloney introduced the Pandemic Heroes Compensation Act of 2020, which would create a compensation fund for all essential workers, personnel, and their families across all industries that were required to leave their homes to perform their services and became ill or died as a result of COVID-19.

On May 26, 2020, Congresswoman Maloney introduced the Pandemic Risk Insurance Act of 2020, which would create a system of shared public and private compensation for business interruption losses resulting from future pandemics or public health emergencies.

On June 5, 2020, Congresswoman Maloney voted in favor of a bill to extend the amount of time, from 8 to 24 weeks, that small businesses have to spend the money.

On July 4, 2020, Congress reauthorized PPP funding through August 8, 2020.

On July 8, 2020, Congresswoman Maloney introduced the Made in America: Preparation for a Pandemic Act of 2020, which would require 25% of personal protective equipment (PPE) to be produced in the U.S. and create a tax credit to assist manufacturers with the costs of developing of expanding domestic sources for the end-to-end production of PPE goods within the U.S. This would promote a stronger manufacturing base in small business communities and strengthen our domestic supply chains.

Congresswoman Maloney is a strong supporter for Community Development Financial Institutions and introduced the Investing in America’s Small Businesses Act, which would increase funding for the CDFI Fund so that more loans can be extended to small businesses in underserved communities.

Congresswoman Maloney voted in favor of House COVID-19 stimulus packages, which included critical provisions that have helped small businesses, their employees, and the communities they serve including legislation to increase funding and improve the Paycheck Protection Program and the Emergency Economic Injury Grant program. It also included funding and resources for Small Business Development Centers and Women’s Business Centers, Minority Business Development Agency grants, and debt relief for current and new SBA borrowers.

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