U.S. House expected to pass $484 billion bill for relief efforts

April 23, 2020

Mark Schremmer


Congress is expected to pass a $484 billion bill on Thursday, April 23, that will provide additional relief funding for the Paycheck Protection Program and Emergency Economic Injury Disaster Loans.

The Senate passed the measure on Tuesday, and the House is expected to do the same on Thursday. The bill includes $321 billion for PPP loans, with $60 billion reserved for credit unions and other community banks in order to better reach smaller businesses. In addition, the bill includes $50 billion for the disaster loans and another $10 billion for EIDL advances.

OOIDA sent an update about the relief legislation to its more than 160,000 members on Wednesday, April 22.

The Association prepared a document with information about the programs, including how to apply.

“For PPP loans, please reach out to your bank or lender as soon as possible in anticipation of the program reopening,” OOIDA wrote. “For EIDL, you can apply here once the new funding is approved.”

OOIDA also would like feedback regarding what experiences its members have had with these programs.

“If you have applied, or tried to apply, to the Small Business Administration’s PPP or EIDL programs, what has been your experience,” OOIDA asked. “Have you been successful in obtaining assistance? Are there any specific issues you have had with the SBA programs, or any specific improvements you would recommend?”

Feedback can be sent to Questions@OOIDA.com.

OOIDA relief efforts

OOIDA has been focused on providing relief to truck drivers in terms of health and the economy during the COVID-19 pandemic.

On April 22, it was announced that about 800,000 masks would be distributed to truck drivers for free. The announcement comes after OOIDA sent a letter to President Donald Trump asking for “urgent and immediate” action to help keep truck drivers safe.

OOIDA issued a Call to Action to its members on April 16, asking them to call their members of Congress and make the following requests:

Waive the 2020 payment of the Heavy Vehicle Use Tax.
Include more funding for the Paycheck Protection Program and the Emergency Economic Injury Disaster Loan program.
Allow trucking companies to account for additional business expenses, when applying for a PPP loan, including truck payments and insurance costs.
Provide more COVID-19 testing and protective equipment at weigh stations and rest areas.

The Association said it remains diligent in its efforts to achieve all of those goals.

“As emergency response efforts continue, small-business truckers are delivering for the American people despite facing intensifying operational challenges,” OOIDA wrote. “In recent weeks, OOIDA has been tracking the plummeting freight rates across all markets and has demanded immediate economic relief for those struggling to stay in business. These efforts include waiving the annual Heavy Vehicle Use Tax and UCR fees, supporting hazard pay for frontline workers that would go directly to drivers, and making federal loan programs more accessible to truckers by allowing them to cover additional payment/insurance costs in their applications.”