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Industry Representatives Urge Congress to Pass COVID-19 Relief

home buildersThe House passed a $2.2 trillion COVID-19-relief bill Thursday, but that reportedly is unlikely to move through the Republican-led Senate. As negotiations continue, the National Association of Home Builders (NAHB) are among housing-industry professionals urging the White House and Republican and Democratic leaders to, as the association puts it in a statement, "move swiftly to advance a bill that will provide relief to American home owners and renters, create a streamlined, simplified forgiveness process for Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) loans, and provide state and local home builders associations (HBAs) access to PPP loans."

In a letter sent to said leaders, the NAHB promised that housing will create jobs and lead the economy forward, but can only do so if relief-geared legislation is put into place, specifically, laws to "help struggling renters with dedicated rental assistance; legislation that provides relief for small businesses from burdensome loan forgiveness requirements; and action that assists HBAs that have largely been excluded from previous relief measures. "

NAHB asked for "immediate emergency rental assistance to prevent a massive housing crisis," noting that eviction moratoriums though the end of the year do not exclude tenants back-rent payments, which, in cases date back to March.

“Emergency rental assistance will provide a solution for residents and housing providers alike, and is necessary to help those with financial hardships, without undermining the stability of the housing market and the financial health of our communities,” NAHB’s letter to lawmakers stated.

NAHB also called on Congress to make the PPP loan forgiveness process simpler, “to ensure small businesses can focus their time, energy, and resources back into their business and communities instead of allocating significant time and resources into completing complex forgiveness forms.”

NAHB reportedly is "pleased that House and Senate leadership recognize the important need for 501(c)(6) organizations (that include state and local HBAs) to access small business loans under the PPP by including this provision in both the HEALS Act and the HEROES Act."

“It is critically important that these non-profits receive the help they so desperately need in the next COVID-19 recovery package,” NAHB told lawmakers. “We strongly urge Congress to work in a bipartisan fashion to pass COVID recovery legislation without delay.”

About Author: Christina Hughes Babb

Christina Hughes Babb is a reporter for DS News and MReport. A graduate of Southern Methodist University, she has been a reporter, editor, and publisher in the Dallas area for more than 15 years. During her 10 years at Advocate Media and Dallas Magazine, she published thousands of articles covering local politics, real estate, development, crime, the arts, entertainment, and human interest, among other topics. She has won two national Mayborn School of Journalism Ten Spurs awards for nonfiction, and has penned pieces for Texas Monthly, Salon.com, Dallas Observer, Edible, and the Dallas Morning News, among others. Contact Christina at christina.hughesbabb@thefivestar.com.
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