Washington, D.C. – U.S. Senator Catherine Cortez Masto (D-Nev.) wrote to Senate leadership to call on them to pass additional comprehensive, bipartisan COVID-19 relief to support the hard-hit Nevada economy. The priorities she outlined in the letter include more funds to shore up the health care system, rental and mortgage assistance, additional pandemic unemployment benefits, nutrition assistance, support for small businesses, including Nevada’s vital travel, tourism, and hospitality industries, and funding for state, local, and tribal governments.
“Across the country, communities continue to battle the twin public health and economic crises brought on by the coronavirus. Nevada has been particularly hard hit: our world class tourism industry is the economic engine of our state, and the necessary measures to limit travel and public gatherings have devastated the state’s economy. . . . It’s past time for Congress to act to bring relief to struggling communities in my state and across the country.”
The full text of the letter is available here.
Senator Cortez Masto has voted for all four COVID-19 relief packages that have been enacted into law since the start of the pandemic. She has repeatedly called on Senate leadership to support further coronavirus relief, and she has introduced or cosponsored multiple bills to provide additional support to Nevada’s hard-hit travel, tourism, and hospitality industries. Those bills include the Hospitality and Commerce Job Recovery Act of 2020 to provide comprehensive relief and recovery measures for the convention, trade show, entertainment, travel and hospitality industries and their workers; the STEP Act to provide economic support for organizations involved in promoting and hosting tourism, travel, or other special events; the RESTAURANTS Act, which would establish a temporary Restaurant Revitalization Fund in the Department of Treasury; and the Save Our Stages Act, which would provide Small Business Administration grants for independent live music venue operators affected by COVID-19.
In her letter to leadership, Senator Cortez Masto called for funding for the following priorities:
- additional health care provider relief funding, including comprehensive support for long-term care facilities and nursing homes;
- federal support to state Medicaid programs that provide critical safety net health coverage to millions of families across the country;
- subsidies for COBRA continuation coverage for those who have lost work or been furloughed due to the pandemic;
- resources for COVID-19 testing and for vaccine distribution;
- an extension of the $600 per week pandemic unemployment benefits, including for ITIN filers;
- expanded nutrition assistance programs to prevent children and families from going hungry;
- housing assistance for renters and homeowners;
- robust supports that will enable small businesses to continue to operate safely, maintain their workforces, and emerge from the pandemic;
- additional funding for state, local, and tribal governments of all sizes that are managing the COVID-19 response in their communities.