Small Business Hardships Don’t Stop for Elections

November 6, 2020

Today, NSBA is urging lawmakers to focus on the road ahead and how to address the massive losses facing America’s small businesses. NSBA congratulates all of the winners of the 2020 elections and looks forward to a productive nonpartisan working relationship that can address the many issues that face the small-business community. Unfortunately, many needed actions have been paused or “grid-locked” while electioneering took center stage.

NSBA’s small-business members are pragmatic and—first and foremost—believe in the rule of law and want the elections process to work. However, many are barely treading water at this point, due in-part to politicians’ nonstop electioneering taking a front-seat to legislating. It’s time to get back to business.

America’s small-business community has been extremely hard-hit by the pandemic and ensuing economic downturn, and now—more than ever—we need policymakers to move past the tribalism that has taken over our political process and reach across the aisle.

There are near-term actions that Congress must take, top among them is to pass another stimulus bill which would allow the small businesses hardest hit to qualify for a second Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) loan. Specifically:

  • Allow forgiven PPP expenses to be deductible as ordinary business expenses;
  • Payroll tax relief that addresses both employer and employee rates;
  • Expand, update and improve the Employee Retention Tax Credit;
  • Allow small businesses to qualify for both a PPP loan and an ERTC but prevent “double dipping”;
  • Provide temporary liability protections for businesses that work to follow applicable public health guidelines;
  • Enable forgiveness funds to be used for PPE and other necessary safety modifications.
  • Ease regulatory impediments by extending filing deadlines where possible and create “grace periods” and/or an enforcement moratorium for rule violations that do not immediately endanger health and safety.

Congress must also deal the rapidly-approaching deadline of the current federal spending approval and pass a more long-term spending bill by Dec. 11 to avoid what could be a catastrophic government shutdown.

There is no shortage of legislative fixes Congress can busy themselves with. Small businesses need more affordable and accessible health care; we believe in paying our fair share of taxes—but it must be fair and it should be easy to do it; we need our leadership to develop pragmatic guidelines and protocols to bolster cybersecurity when it comes to technology, finances and infrastructure; we need pragmatism and restraint when it comes to regulations; and we need security and sustainability when it comes to our transportation and communications infrastructure.

COVID-19 continues to wreak widespread economic hardship and insecurity among small businesses and the 70 million people in the U.S. who run or work for a small business. Small business desperately needs our elected officials to carve a path forward from this pandemic, one that invites confidence in our economy and our collective ability to right this ship.

But first: we need our elected officials to simply do their jobs. Small-business owners rarely get a day off, and we’re not asking you to work 24/7, we just want you to pause the incessant interviewing for your next job which is at least two years away.

Please click here to view NSBA’s statement congratulating President-Elect Joe Biden.