The movement to act swiftly to exempt Coronavirus Economic Relief for Transportation Services (CERTS) Act grants funds from federal taxation has shifted to the U.S. Senate. Three Senators are championing the cause which would give CERTS grants the same tax treatment extended to grants for shuttered venues and restaurants for their pandemic relief funds.
United States Senators Charles Grassley (R-IA), Robert P. Casey, Jr. (D-PA), and Marsha Blackburn (R-TN) are leading this effort seeking bipartisan support to get this tax fairness measure included in the first available legislative vehicle. The United Motorcoach Association is mobilizing its membership to urge every U.S. Senator to sign the letter spearheaded by Grassley, Casey, and Blackburn.
As of this afternoon, 300 industry advocates had sent 632 emails to their Senators, urging them to sign the bipartisan letter of support.
During October and early November, four U.S. Representatives rallied 89 of their colleagues to join them in calling for House leadership to exempt Coronavirus Economic Relief for Transportation Services Act grant funds from federal taxation in the next possible legislative vehicle. Representatives Jimmy Panetta (D-CA), Darin LaHood (R-IL), Albio Sires (D-NJ), and John Rose (R-TN) led the effort over the past two weeks, and motorcoach operators across the country did their part, emailing and calling their U.S. Representatives asking them to sign the letter.
Their bipartisan letter garnered 93 signatures, including the original signers.
The industry received $2B in funding late last year as part of an earlier aid package. President Trump signed the bill containing the CERTS Act last night bringing to rest uncertainty over a threatened veto.
The Consolidated Appropriations Act of 2021 contains $900 billion in additional coronavirus relief. This includes $2 billion for the Coronavirus Economic Relief for Transportation Services (CERTS) Act.