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Passenger Vessels at all. This decision also had an impact on our local com- sist many PVA members, and the agency should be able to munity and the people we employ. But stories like this are accept applications almost immediately. unfortunately not limited to just my company or my town. The legislation contains a set-aside of $14 billion for
Even ferry operations that are considered essential are public transit systems. PVA members that operate publicly struggling. Island communities throughout the U.S. rely owned ferries will be able to access this fund, as they did in on dependable ferry service, particularly during a pandem- the previous round of aid last spring.
ic when necessary supplies are limited. Also included in the bill is the CERTS (Coronavirus
Those operators that have been open, and offering ser- Economic Relief for Transportation Services) Act; fund- vice at a dramatically limited capacity, are faced with the ed at $2 billion. This would be a new program of grants extraordinary challenge of balancing the need to continue through the Department of the Treasury to most U.S.- to provide services to their communities while also manag- ? agged passenger vessel operators. ing the unprecedented health and safety risks. My company was fortunate to receive ? rst-round PPP funds and used up all of it on the seasonal employees we had on the payroll for the short time that we had a staff.
Financial relief: PVA advocacy efforts pay off
PVA has always been the voice of the passenger vessel This additional funding throws a lifeline to our company industry in Washington D.C. This year, PVA has worked and others like ours.
For businesses, like mine, that have been forced to pause tirelessly to seek needed federal emergency stimulus fund- operations, it may seem like time is standing still. Yet in- ing for the industry and its efforts have paid off.
In addition to ? ghting for emergency stimulus funding side the D.C. beltway deadlines, hearings, rule changes, and legislation that impact our businesses still continue. and loans for the passenger vessel industry early in the pan-
The PVA team is speaking out for us, because when we demic, PVA continued to urge Congress to provide addi- tional emergency funding throughout the year. This effort, do reopen, we will also face these new proposed rules and policy changes. PVA keeps our voice in the conversation. and that of other organizations, culminated in recently en- acted economic relief legislation. This legislation provides
NTSB and the M/V Conception another round of the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) for small businesses; funded at $284 billion. These forgiv- Also looming over our industry is the collective soul able loans from the Small Business Administration will as- searching and regulatory aftermath following the tragic 22 | MN January 2021