House and Senate leaders announce COVID/Funding bill

December 20, 2020

Federal policymakers announced an agreement on an omnibus spending bill Sunday that would fund the federal government through Sept. 30, 2021, and provide long-awaited pandemic relief for consumers and businesses.

Though text of the bill has not yet been made public, several CUNA-sought provisions are anticipated, including language delaying the current expected credit loss (CECL) standard, Troubled Debt Restructuring (TDR) and Central Liquidity Facility (CLF) extensions, Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) forgiveness, and funds to community and minority-focused credit unions.

Topline relief provisions announced Sunday evening include:

  • $600 economic support payments for those who earned up to $75,000 in 2019. The payments  decrease for those earning more than $75,000 and disappear for those earning over $99,000;
  • A $300 extension in unemployment benefits  through at least mid-March 2021;
  • A one-month extension of the eviction moratorium and $25 billion in emergency assistance to renters.

Credit union-supported policies expected to be in the legislation include:

  • CUNA/League-supported legislation sponsored by Sen. Kevin Cramer (R-N.D.) that would simplify PPP loan forgiveness.
  • Reauthorization of the PPP;
  • A one-year delay of implementation of the CECL standard;
  • A one-year extension to TDR and CLF provisions;
  • Additional funds for Community Development Financial Institutions (CDFI), with a set aside specifically for the Treasury’s CDFI Fund; and
  • Funds for Minority Depository Institutions.

Congress also passed an additional 24-hour continuing resolution to avoid a shutdown as both chambers handle procedural matters. The House is expected to vote on the omnibus legislation Monday with additional procedural accommodations to be made at that time for Senate rules.