WASHINGTON – U.S. Senators Maggie Hassan and Jeanne Shaheen are calling on Congressional leadership to provide specific relief to the restaurant and hospitality industries in the upcoming COVID-19 package.
“In order to protect workers’ paychecks and support major employers in New Hampshire communities, we write to urge you to prioritize direct economic relief that will help restaurants and hospitality businesses through the difficult months ahead,” wrote Senators Hassan and Shaheen.
The Senators shared that while the Paycheck Protection Program, Employee Retention Tax Credit, and additional federal programs have provided significant support for small businesses -- including restaurants and hospitality businesses -- more relief is needed.
The Senators specifically highlighted the impact of COVID-19 on these industries in New Hampshire: “From February to December 2020, New Hampshire lost 12,800 foodservice and hospitality jobs – representing over 26 percent of the workforce in these industries. As these extremely concerning statistics show, it is absolutely essential that the next COVID relief package target assistance to help struggling restaurant and hospitality businesses and their employees.”
The letter comes as the Senate debates the next COVID-19 relief package. The latest package that Senator Hassan and Shaheen helped pass into law included an extension of the Paycheck Protection Program. The package also included the bipartisan Employer Assistance Coordination Act, which Senator Hassan introduced with Senator Richard Burr (R-NC), to allow eligible small employers to both participate in the Paycheck Protection Program and also claim the Employee Retention Tax Credit to help keep workers on payroll and pay for their health care coverage.
Read Senators Hassan and Shaheen’s full letter here.