Senate Passes Covid Relief Bill – $26.8B Grant Fund for Restaurants

US Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer successfully navigated President Biden’s Covid Relief Bill through the United States Senate. The bill provides direct payments of up to $1,400 for hundreds of millions of Americans, jobless aid of $300 a week to last through the summer, money for distributing coronavirus vaccines and relief for states, cities, schools and small businesses struggling during the pandemic.

The American Rescue Plan includes $28.6 billion for grants for restaurants, taverns, and bars and adds $1.5B to the $15B grant program for live venues passed in the relief billĀ  in December. The grants, limited to independent operators, are designed to cover the loss of income in 2020 compared to 2019. Senator Schumer fought hard for passage of this proposal for months and was ultimately successful adding $3.6B to the allocation approved in the House bill.

The bill still needs the approval of the House of Representatives, which is expected to pass it next week. We expect President Biden will sign it into law as soon as possible.

Thanks to Senators Schumer and Gillibrand and the many members of the New York State Congressional Delegation who have supported this initiative for the long haul. There more work to be done to get checks into hands but that day just got a lot closer.