Takeaway #1 – Individuals
Provides economic support to individuals in response to the economic distress caused by the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic; includes one-time payments for certain individuals and couples ($1,200 and $2,400 respectively) as well as $500 per child; creates a temporary Pandemic Unemployment Assistance program to provide payments to those not traditionally eligible for unemployment benefits; waives the 10% penalty on early withdrawals from retirement plans; provides relief from student loan debt.
Takeaway #2 – Small Businesses
Establishes a program where eligible small businesses and nonprofit organizations can apply for business interruption loans for expenses covering the period beginning Feb. 15, 2020, through June 30, 2020. In addition, the SBA’s Economic Injury Disaster Loan program is revised to include to sole proprietors, cooperatives and ESOPs.
Takeaway #3 – Higher Education
Provides temporary relief for federal student loan borrowers; enables employers to provide a student loan repayment benefit to employees on a tax-free basis; authorizes the Secretary of Education to modify current allowable uses of funds for institutional grant programs so colleges and universities can re-deploy resources and services to COVID-19 efforts.
Takeaway #4 – Businesses, States and Municipalities
Provides $500 billion to Treasury’s Exchange Stabilization Fund to provide loans, loan guarantees, and other investments to businesses and state and local governments; $46 billion is available for passenger air carriers, air cargo carriers, and businesses important to maintaining national security; $454 billion may be used to support lending to eligible businesses, states, and municipalities. Also provides $150 billion to states, territories, and tribal governments to use for expenditures incurred due to the public health emergency with respect to COVID-19.
As the CARES Act and related programs are evolving, the SBA and other federal agencies are making determinations around qualification, administration and deployment of the $454 billion in funds for businesses. We are in the process of understanding such implications for entities that would be deemed mid-market or larger (more than 500 employees) and we will be keep you informed of developments in real-time.
Takeaway #5 – Telehealth
Expands telehealth services in Medicare, including services unrelated to COVID-19 treatments.
Takeaway #6 – Medical Devices and Pharmaceuticals
Requires the strategic national stockpile to include certain types of medical supplies; provides permanent liability protection for manufacturers of personal respiratory protective equipment; requires drug manufacturers to submit more information when there is an interruption in supply; requires manufacturers to maintain contingency plans to ensure back up supply of products.
Takeaway #7 – Defense Production Act
Increases access to materials necessary for national security and pandemic recovery under the Defense Production Act.