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Cortez Masto seeks to expand nonprofits eligible for loans

U.S. Sen. Catherine Cortez Masto (D-Nevada) sent a letter to Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell of Kentucky and Minority Leader Charles Schumer of New York, asking them to work with her to ensure local community nonprofit organizations, particularly those uniquely hit by the COVID-19 crisis, such as organizations involved in tourism and hospitality, are able to access relief under the Small Business Administration’s loan guarantee program.

“As you know, the CARES Act expanded eligibility for the SBA’s loan guarantee program to 501(c)3 nonprofits with under 500 employees,” Cortez Masto wrote. “However, other types of nonprofit entities, such as 501(c)4 and 501(c)6 organizations, remain ineligible for relief under the PPP.

“I am deeply concerned that without access to any relief, many of these nonprofits, which are often professional organizations, small business associations, tourism and hospitality leagues, local chambers of commerce and social welfare groups, may be forced to shut down operations and payroll.”

Cortez Masto told the Senate leaders that Nevada’s businesses rely on local chambers of commerce and destination marketing organizations, types of nonprofits that are currently ineligible for SBA loans under the CARES Act.

“Nevada is uniquely reliant on a robust tourism, hospitality, recreation and entertainment economy,” Cortez Masto continued. “Many of these ineligible nonprofits in my state are involved in travel and hospitality promotion and outreach, the industries hardest hit by the COVID-19 crisis. Nevada’s businesses heavily rely on our local chambers of commerce and destination marketing organizations who can respond to their unique needs in our diverse urban areas and remote rural communities.”

Cortez Masto acknowledged the need to ensure relief is used for operating costs and payroll, rather than lobbying or other extraneous expenses.

”I look forward to working with you and our local community organizations to address these concerns constructively and in a way that ensures economic relief measures will assist our hardest hit nonprofits and those that play critical roles in supporting local economies and communities,” she wrote.

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