Coalition urges Congress to pass Covid-relief legislation 'now'

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Washington DC Capitol government [Credit: Tupungato/Shutterstock.com]
The U.S. Capitol building. A broad coalition of organizations urged federal lawmakers to move on pandemic relief. Photo Credit: Tupungato/Shutterstock.com

A coalition made up of public- and private-sector organizations, including the American Hotel and Lodging Association and the U.S. Travel Association, renewed its call to Congress to take immediate action on Covid-19 relief legislation.

Lawmakers need to pass a relief bill now, not wait until 2021, according to the group, the Covid Relief Now Coalition.

"With Election Day well behind us and most races settled, we renew our urgent request for action to help stave off further job loss on Main Street, especially as spiking coronavirus cases put economies across the country at further risk," the coalition wrote.

The coalition said it surveyed more than 1,800 cities, counties and industry associations, and 80% of respondents said their financial health was impacted by Covid, and 91% believe their condition will worsen without additional financial aid.

Since the Cares Act was passed in March, many groups have called for additional aid, including ASTA and U.S. Travel. Congress has remained at an impasse. But some reports indicated Friday that lawmakers were moving quickly toward a deal.

"The time to advance the next round of Covid-related economic relief is now, during the 2020 lame-duck legislative session," the coalition said.

The coalition specifically pointed out how hard-hit the travel industry has been by the pandemic, stating it currently accounts for more than one-third of all U.S. unemployment, with 4.5 million jobs projected to be lost by the end of the year.

"Each passing moment guarantees more job losses and a hamstrung recovery," the coalition wrote. "We urge you to finalize, pass and enact a Covid relief package into law this year."

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