President Trump Issues Four Executive Actions August 13,2020

Last week Congress met to discuss and negotiate the next COVID-19 relief package. Due to partisan tension, the House and Senate were unable to agree on a package before the week’s end. In response, President Trump announced four executive actions he has taken in an attempt to provide relief to businesses and citizens. It is unclear whether these actions will be implemented -- please know that these are preliminary summaries, and we are working closely with the National Restaurant Association to understand what the impacts of these actions will be and will update you with more information as we receive it. 

  • Enhanced Unemployment Benefits: President Trump announced his desire to continue the federal enhanced unemployment benefits with a $400 weekly benefit for eligible individuals. States will be asked to cover 25% of the cost using existing funds, and the federal government will cover the remaining 75%. 
  • Payroll Tax Holiday: President Trump signed an Executive Order for a payroll tax holiday for those earning less than roughly $100,000 per year. He issued a directive instructing the Treasury Department to allow employers to defer a certain portion of payroll taxes from August 1 or September 1, with more details to follow. The payroll tax holiday applies to individuals whose compensation during any bi-weekly pay period generally is less than $4,000 calculated on a pre-tax basis, or the equivalent amount with respect to other pay periods. 
  • Eviction Moratorium: The President signed a directive instructing the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) to place a moratorium on evictions to ensure renters and homeowners can stay in their homes. He did not provide details on how this moratorium would be structured. Additionally, he directed HUD to provide financial assistance to renters and homeowners, but did not offer specifics as to how that assistance would be funded. 
  • Student Loan Relief: The President signed a directive that proposed extending the policy of 0% interest rates and suspended payments on most federal student loans through the end of the year. 

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