Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer and House Speaker Nancy Pelosi filed a 2021 joint budget resolution on Monday to provide “urgently needed” funding for COVID-19 relief through Pres. Biden’s $1.9 trillion American Rescue Plan. The joint budget resolution offers instructions to relevant Congressional committees like providing “additional relief for nation’s small businesses and hard-hit industries” including “a dedicated grant relief program for restaurants” totaling $25 billion, along with other plans to help save entertainment and cultural institutions.
The proposed $25 billion restaurant recovery fund is largely based on the original RESTAURANTS Act proposal, which passed the Democrat-controlled House in October but was not considered in the then-Republican-controlled Senate.
“The announcement from Majority Leader Schumer and Speaker Pelosi of a $25 billion restaurant recovery fund has the potential to be a game-changer for tens of thousands of restaurants on the verge of closing,” National Restaurant Association executive vice president of public affairs Sean Kennedy said in a statement. “2020 ended with the industry slipping into a double-dip recession and losing nearly 400,000 jobs, highlighting the unique challenges restaurant owners and our employees are still facing.”