Senate Wants EIDL Money Spent

Last week, as the Small Business Administration (SBA) announced that it would be releasing the remaining $180 Million in the Restaurant Revitalization Fund (RRF), the Small Business Committee in the US Senate was reiterating a call for the SBA to also release the remaining $800 Million still available in the Economic Injury Disaster Loan Program.…

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Senate Vote Kills RRF

Yesterday, the U.S. Senate voted 52-43 for closure on the Small Business COVID Relief Act of 2022 (S.4008). Unfortunately, the bill was being filibustered and therefore needed 60 votes to begin debate on the floor for a vote on passage. S.4008 reallocated $5 billion from previously appropriated COVID funds however, the funding for the remaining…

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Senate Readies Budget Bill, Adds PRO Act

One vehicle that may be used to replenish the RRF program is the $3.5 trillion budget bill, which Majority Leader Schumer plans to pass without republican support through the budget reconciliation process. The framework for that budget bill was unveiled last week in the Senate and it includes penalties on employers deemed to be interfering…

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Paycheck Fairness Act Fails in Senate

This week, the U.S. Senate failed to advance the Paycheck Fairness Act by a vote of 49 – 50. The legislation, which required 60 votes to clear the upper chamber, did not come close to reaching that threshold, without any Senate Republicans voting in favor. A declared priority of Senate Majority Leader Chuck Shumer (D-NY),…

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And, Then There’s the PRO Act

If that weren’t enough union saber-rattling, organized labor has been pulling out all the stops to create additional momentum for the passage of the Protecting the Right to Organize Act (PRO Act). Toward that end, AFL-CIO affiliates along with their allies are planning as many as 200 rallies up and down the East Coast next…

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It Ain’t Over ‘Til It’s Over!

The late New York Yankee hall of Fame catcher Yogi Berra is credited with first uttering that now well-known phrase, but it seems Congressional democrats are scheming to take it to the next level. Despite a majority in the US Senate being opposed to a $15 federal minimum wage, and prior rulings by the Senate…

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A Rose by Any Other Name

Parliamentarian rulings be damned, Senate democrats are looking at different options to circumvent the ruling of the Senate Parliamentarian last week that a provision in the House-passed American Rescue Act of 2021 (Covid-19 relief bill) is ineligible for passage under budget reconciliation rules (which only require 50 democratic votes for passage rather than 60 votes…

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Senate Parliamentarian Spikes Minimum Wage

Last night, Elizabeth MacDonough, the Senate Parliamentarian, ruled that a federal minimum wage increase would be ineligible under reconciliation rules, effectively killing it as a component of the American Rescue Plan Act of 2021. To be eligible for action in the US Senate via reconciliation under the so-called Byrd Rule (authored by and named for…

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Senate Blocks “Skinny Bill”

Senate democrats voted as one yesterday to block the latest coronavirus relief bill put forth by Senate leadership. All 47 democrat Senators voted against advancing the coronavirus relief bill while 52 of 53 republican senators voted to advance the legislation (Kentucky Senator Rand Paul was the lone republican in opposition). Under Senate rules, 60 votes…

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Senate Committee Hears from FTC Commissioners

The US Senate Committee on Commerce, Science and Transportation held a hearing this week specifically on the Federal Trade Commission, the federal agency charged with oversight of franchising across the country. The panel of witnesses at the August 5 hearing included all five of the FTC Commissioners, including Commissioner Rohit Chopra, who specifically highlighted some…

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