In this Capitol Report:
Colorado Chamber Requests Extension of Paycheck Protection Program
The CARES Act which was adopted by Congress and signed by President Trump included a Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) which provides for loans to businesses that have been financially impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic. Unfortunately, this loan program is running out of funding while hundreds of thousands of small businesses across the nation continue to need financial support.
We know that many of our members that are small businesses still need these loans and we would recommend reaching out to the Colorado congressional delegation members to make that request. The National Association of Manufacturing (NAM) has developed a simple electronic message that can be sent directly to delegation members. If your business is interested in receiving a PPP loan, please use this linked tool to send a prewritten message to our delegation to continue the critically needed PPP program.
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National, State and Local Chambers Lobby to Extend Paycheck Protection Program to All Non-Profits
The CARES Act which was recently passed by Congress and signed by President Trump included the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) which provides loans to businesses that need financial support as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. However, the Act does not currently accept applications from all non-profits, including 501(c)(6) chambers of commerce. Many chambers of commerce are in need of this financial support, and are asking Congress to allow ALL non-profits to obtain access to the PPP funds.
The U.S. Chamber has created a letter that local chambers across the State can sign and submit to have their voice heard. If your Chamber is interested in this opportunity, we encourage you to read and sign this letter in support of this effort by a deadline of Thursday, April 23, 2020 at 2p.m. MST. Click here to read and sign the letter.
Please contact Loren Furman at email@example.com or at 303-866-9642 with any questions.
Common Sense Roundtable Releases Study – Is Colorado’s Budget Ready for a Recession?
This week, our partners at the Common Sense Roundtable released an economic study on whether the State is prepared for a recession as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. Prior to this crisis, the State’s budget forecast indicated high revenues, but in a short period of time due to business closures, loss of tax revenue and social distancing requirements, the State will experience a potential revenue loss of $2 billion to $3 billion. This shortfall will have dramatic effects on the State’s services including Medicaid services, Unemployment Insurance, PERA, public health and transportation. It will also impact legislation that created new programs or required funding for existing programs.
Highlights of the study are provided below:
- The current state General Fund reserve amounts to roughly $1 Billion, just above the statutorily required rate of 7.25%;
- The economic fallout caused by COVID-19, has overshadowed the potential economic impacts from the rapid drop and volatility in oil and gas prices. That fallout translates to a significant cut in oil and gas property tax revenues to local government;
- Recently passed revenue line items, including an increased general fund contribution to PERA ($225M annually) and the state funding of full-day kindergarten ($200M annually) will add pressure to other state budget items such as transportation and higher education in order to make up for lost revenues;
- A majority of the estimated $2.5 Billion in federal stimulus will not able to cover losses in revenue, and will go directly to help state departments cover new costs related to the current crisis, such as expenses related to transitioning education from the classroom to online;
- A significant reduction in state revenue between $2 Billion to $3.2 Billion dollars over the next months. For additional perspective, this decline is equivalent to the total budgets for both Transportation and Human Services.