Home Relief in the American Rescue Plan Act of 2021 | Holland & Knight LLP
On March 11, 2021, President Joe Biden signed HR 1319, the American Rescue Plan Act of 2021, into law. The $ 1.9 trillion COVID-19 relief bill, which passed in the United States Senate by a narrow vote of 50-49 on March 6 and in the United States House of Representatives by a vote of 220 -211 on March 10, represents the first legislative achievement of the Biden administration with the Democratic majority in Congress to extend federal assistance to tenants, landlords, restaurants and small business owners, among others.
The legislation provides for $ 40 billion in rent and mortgage assistance, including $ 21.55 billion for emergency rent assistance, $ 5 billion for emergency housing vouchers, $ 750 million for dollars for tribal housing needs and $ 100 million for rural housing. The law is the first stimulus package to include direct aid to state, local and tribal governments, designating $ 350 billion to alleviate budget deficits induced by the pandemic. Of the $ 195.3 billion allocated to states, $ 500 million in aid will be distributed to each state and the District of Columbia, and $ 168.55 billion will be distributed based on each state’s share in the total. unemployed from October 2020 to December 2020. In addition, $ 10 billion has been earmarked for an infrastructure program to help local governments carry out investment projects.
For businesses, the law added $ 7.25 billion to the Paycheque Protection Program (PPP), which has already disbursed $ 662 billion in forgivable loans to help companies keep their workforces employed during the pandemic, although the P3 expires on March 31. With the $ 28.6 billion credit to the Restaurant Revitalization Fund, also administered by the Small Business Administration (SBA), eligible restaurants will receive assistance in the form of grants of up to $ 10 million for restaurant groups. restaurants and $ 5 million for individual restaurants. Additionally, restaurant and small business owners are eligible for long-term, low-interest loans through a $ 15 billion program. Disaster Emergency Loan Program (EIDL).
Although homeowners have remained among the groups most affected by the pandemic, they will not receive direct help from the law. However, direct federal rent assistance will eventually trickle down to landlords, as will restaurant assistance to owners of mixed-use properties. Homeowners will also find relief from long-awaited unemployment benefits and stimulus payments of $ 1,400 that Americans can use to pay for necessities such as rent. The law extends the main unemployment insurance programs created by the Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security Act (CARES), such as Pandemic Unemployment Assistance (PUA), Emergency Pandemic Compensation (PEUC), and Federal Pandemic Unemployment Compensation (FPUC) programs, all of which were scheduled to expire on March 14 but have now been extended to September 6.
The American Rescue Plan Act also provides $ 5 billion to help the homeless and $ 510 million for Federal Emergency Management (FEMA) Emergency food and shelter program (EFSP), which supports homeless service providers. However, the legislation does not address the federal moratorium on evictions in place before March 31. As with previous COVID-19 relief bills, the US Department of the Treasury is expected to communicate guidance and provide a timeline regarding the distribution of funds under the law.
For an in-depth look at the other parts of the bill, see Holland & Knight’s previous alert, “American Rescue Plan Act of 2021: summary“, March 10, 2021.
With assistance from Emma Hsu, Paralegal Holland & Knight