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Congress Reaches Agreement on Massive Coronavirus Relief Package
Travel Advisors Will Have Access to $25 Billion Airline Assistance Funds, Multiple Other Options for Relief Under Bill
Today, Congressional leadership and the Trump Administration came to agreement and released the text of a massive $2 trillion coronavirus relief package, the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act. While it is expected to pass both chambers of Congress and be signed into law by President Trump in the coming days, it is possible that additional changes might be made before then.
Over the past few weeks, we have worked hand-in-hand with our 13,000 members to secure the maximum amount of relief for the travel agency community in this package. Thank you to our members who sent more than 28,000 grassroots messages to legislators through ASTA.org. We are thrilled that travel agencies are included in the airline assistance portion of the bill -- it is a huge win because it means that Congress heeded our call to include our members in the targeted relief for the travel industry. Our efforts made a significant difference in the size and scope of relief options in the bill.
Among the provisions of the CARES Act that will provide relief to the travel agency industry, its employees and independent contractors (ICs) are:
In the coming days, ASTA will be analyzing the entirety of the relief package for provisions impacting its members, and will explore key questions such as how the new SBA loan program interacts with the Administration's existing Disaster Relief programs. ASTA will also monitor closely SBA and Treasury/Transportation Department announcements with regard to how they plan to distribute this relief.
In the meantime, members are encouraged to stay tuned to ASTA.org and subscribe to ASTA's Travel Advisor Daily newsletter for the latest information. Finally, given the scale of the crisis, ASTA expects Congress will consider additional relief legislation in the coming weeks and months and if so we will be heavily engaged to secure members access to further relief.
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