Weekly Legislative Update March 29, 2021

Death Tax Repeal Act Reintroduced

Recently, the Death Tax Repeal Act of 2021 was reintroduced (S. 617 & H.R. 1712) by Congressmen Smith (R-MO) and Bishop (D-GA) in the House and Senate Minority Whip Thune in the Senate.

 
TIA strongly supports the legislation.
 
TIA signed on to a letter supporting the legislation along with 154 organizations.
 
While we don’t expect repeal to pass under a Biden administration, this year we will be fighting against a death tax increase and our friends on the hill tell us that a strong offense helps them play defense on this issue.
 
The House bill already has 121 cosponsors and the Senate has 25. TIA has been working to gather cosponsors on the legislation.
 
Last Congress, Senate Democrats proposed rolling back the doubled exemption to partly pay for their infrastructure package.
 
With another reconciliation bill likely this year, TIA is on high alert for any changes to the estate tax, capital gains due at death, step up in basis changes, and technical changes to the estate tax like disallowing valuation discounts and disallowing the use of certain trusts that family businesses use to plan for succession. 
 
TIA Signs onto Stakeholder Support Letter- PPP Extension Act of 2021
 
Dear Senators Cardin, Collins and Shaheen and Representatives Velazquez, Luetkemeyer, Bourdeaux and Kim:
 
The undersigned organizations are writing to thank you for your bicameral leadership and swift bipartisan action to provide relief to America’s small businesses through this economic emergency. We strongly support the PPP Extension Act of 2021, which will extend the Small Business Administration’s (SBA) Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) application period beyond the March 31, 2021 sunset date.
 
While we realize the Small Business Administration (SBA) is under tremendous time constraints and is struggling with internal resource issues, our members are highly concerned by the lack of progress on major Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) processing issues, including hold/error codes and application rejections due to Taxpayer Identification Number (“TIN”) issues or mismatches, in addition to many unresolved technical problems with the current PPP process. These delays and denials may put many applicants in danger of not making the March 31st authorization deadline.
 
Nearly one year into the COVID-19 pandemic, the continued liquidity challenges of the small business sector are acute, especially for those business limited by dramatic capacity restrictions and other critical health and safety protocols in place to protect the public, consumers and workers from COVID-19.
 
Thank you for extending the window of opportunity for pandemic programs to effectively impact the affected small business sector, especially those traditionally under-invested and underserved groups which must also be given the chance to succeed.
 
We stand ready to work with you during this critical moment, and thank you for considering our views.
 
Sincerely,
 
TIA and other trade associations
 
(read below to see the outcome)
 
Senate Approves Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) Extension
 
In good news for the country’s small businesses, last week the Senate passed (by a vote of 92 to 7) the PPP Extension Act of 2021 (H.R. 1799) – which will extend the time for businesses to apply for, and the Small Business Administration (SBA) to grant, Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) loans.
 
TIA had supported the legislation and signed onto the above letter.
 
While the latest COVID relief package signed into law by President Biden on March 11 included an additional $7.2 billion for PPP loans and opened the program up to additional tax-exempt entities and online news organizations, the SBA was still facing a looming March 31, 2021 deadline for approving PPP loans.
 
The PPP Extension Act of 2021 extends the deadlines and provides businesses until May 31, 2021 to apply for a first or second PPP loan and allows the SBA until June 30 to review and approve loan applications submitted before June 1.
 
The PPP Extension Act of 2021 was already passed in the House on March 16, 2021 and President Biden is now expected to sign it into law. The passage of this legislation is a welcome development that the TIA actively supported.
 
We continue to encourage all small businesses to take full advantage of the PPP program and other relief programs, including the Employee Retention Tax Credit (ERTC) if they have not done so already.