The White House and Senate leaders in the very early hours of this morning approved a $2-trillion (that’s $2,000,000,000,000) package to provide immediate stimulus to their economy. Following intense negotiations the package produced is one of the most expensive and potentially impactful measures in the history of the US Congress.
White House legislative affairs director Eric Ueland announced just after midnight “Ladies and gentlemen, we are done,” and then for good measure emphasised “We have a deal.”
The package will deliver an enormous injection of financial aid into the struggling US economy. It will help people already hit by job loss, with provisions to help impacted American workers and families as well as small businesses and major industries, including airlines, unlike the UK government. Chancellor Rushi Sunak yesterday told UK airlines that help was not available from government and to seek finance elsewhere.
While the full details are yet to be seen, many issues have been debated behind closed doors for days. This included passionate debate over the $500 billion proposal to provide loans to distressed companies, including circa $50 billion for US airlines.
Democrats argued that there was not enough insight or detail to how the dollars would be distributed, Republicans then agreed to create an oversight board and an inspector general position to review and oversee exactly how the money is spent.
Negotiators are also discussed providing four months of unemployment benefits, extending to self-employed workers, 5 million self-employed people in the UK, many of whom work in hospitality, will be hoping Chancellor Rishi Sunak is inspired.
The new bill ensures the US Government’s Small Business Administration could serve as a guarantor for loans of up to $10 billion for small businesses to enable them to maintain their payrolls and payment of debts.
These actions will undoubtedly benefit the US hospitality industry in the weeks and months ahead.
It is also being reported that all government officials, including Donald Trump, who have business interests outside of their role in government will be exempt.