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Exhibitions Mean Business is focused on issues and legislation that impact our industry, our members and our communities. These issues will evolve and change over time, but it’s up to all of us as an industry to ensure that our voice is heard.
Over the past 7 years, Exhibitions Mean Business has lent its voice to issues that affect business events. Below you will find updates on key legislative action items and their progress to date.
Our Voices Mattered: Success Stories
Watch this space as we report on wins and successes at the federal, state and local levels. Let us know what’s happening in your community.
Our industry is reeling from the impact of COVID-19. As our world works toward recovery, so do our members. Individuals and businesses need support. A strong exhibitions and events industry will play a key role in the recovery of our global economy. Watch this space for more details on recovery efforts and how we are amplifying our voice for the health of our industry.
Watch this space for more information and let us know your experience and contacts around these issues.
The exhibition, meetings, and events industry recognizes the need to protect public health, build confidence in the American people that when the time is right we will be ready with safety and sanitation measures and to establish a reopening of our industries economy.
1. Incentivize a safe restart of the exhibitions, meetings, and events economy: Create a temporary travel tax credit, allow businesses to fully deduct food and entertainment expenses, provide tax breaks for personal protective equipment (PPE) and sterilization of facilities, and enact tax measures to help revitalize U.S. trade shows and exhibitions.
2. Extend and enhance economic relief: Enable destination marketing organizations (DMOs) to receive Small Business Administration (SBA) Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) loans, increase maximum loan amounts and flexibility, extend the covered period through 2020, and build on other critical provisions in the CARES Act.
3. Support community-based economic recovery: Provide $10 billion in Economic Development Administration grants for DMOs and small businesses to promote healthy travel practices and encourage travel where it is safe.
4. Protect businesses that protect public health: Enact targeted and temporary safe harbor from liability for businesses that follow proper health and safety guidelines to protect against COVID-19.
See Legislative Priorities 4 & 5 for more details
5. Enable safe and healthy economic activity: Expand the federal role in the White House “Testing Blueprint” to strategically position COVID-19 tests to support travel, convention centers, and venue sites as well as significant funding for implementation.
Why this matters to you:
Congressional Bill Number: H.R.6697. Official title: To amend the Small Business Act to expand the Paycheck Protection Program for certain organizations, and for other purposes.
Status as of May 2020: Introduced on May 5, 2020 by Reps. Pappas (D-NH), Fitzpatrick (R-PA), Cisneros (D-CA) and Steube (R-FL). Referred to the House Committee on Small Business.
Why this matters to you:
Our Call to Action: We urge House members to sign on (cosponsor) H.R. 6697 Local Chamber, Tourism, and 501 (c) (6) Protection Act of 2020, to provide Paycheck Protection Program funding to 501(c)(6) organizations or destination marketing organizations (DMOs).
Overview: This bill modifies the Paycheck Protection Program implemented by the Small Business Administration in response to COVID-19. Specifically, the bill expands the program to encompass organizations with 300 or fewer employees that (1) operate under section 501(c)(6) of the Internal Revenue Code, or (2) are a destination marketing organization (DMO) engaged in promoting communities and facilities to businesses travelers.
Our message: Both 501(c)(6) and destination marketing organizations (DMOs) play a critical role in a phased reopening of the economy, which will be increasingly more difficult if they do not have Paycheck Protection Program funding to sustain their operations. The lack of investment will cost the U.S. economy millions in revenue and jobs.
Congressional Bill Number: H.R.6800. Official title: Health and Economic Recovery Omnibus Emergency Solutions Act
Status as of May 2020: Introduced on May 12, 2020 by Reps. Lowery (D-NY-17) and 10 additional reps. (See list here.) House passage on May 15, 2020 by 208 Yeas to 199 Nays. See how they voted. The bill moves to the Senate for consideration.
Why this matters to you:
Our Call to Action: We urge Senators to vote yes on H.R. 6800, the Health and Economic Recovery Omnibus Emergency Solutions Act, to provide Paycheck Protection Program funding to all associations and nonprofits.
Overview: The bill expands the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) implemented by the Small Business Administration to all associations and nonprofits. Many of these organizations will need this source of financial protection to withstand the loss of revenue due to cancelled or postponed exhibitions and events.
Our message: In these extraordinary financial times, it is critical for the federal government to use whatever fiscal means they have at their disposal to prop up the economy. The lack of investment will cost the U.S. economy millions in revenue and jobs and prolong the recovery.