NGA Applauds Bipartisan Pandemic Relief Package

December 15, 2020

Independent grocers urge Congress to pass legislation by year’s end

The National Grocers Association (NGA), the national trade association representing the independent supermarket industry, applauds the bipartisan efforts by lawmakers toward pandemic relief efforts and urges Congress to pass a relief package before the end of the year.

A bipartisan group of negotiators has released a long-awaited compromise package in two parts: a $748 billion package boosting the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP), nutrition programs, unemployment compensation and other funding; and a more controversial $160 billion add-on of state and local funding married with a liability protection provision.

“This is an encouraging sign after months of deadlock,” said Chris Jones, NGA’s senior vice president, government relations and counsel. “Although the proposal isn’t perfect, that is the nature of compromise, and we are particularly encouraged by the strong liability protections. On behalf of independent grocers across the U.S., we urge Congress to act quickly to protect independent grocers from frivolous lawsuits.”

Top priorities of NGA’s membership for COVID relief include tax relief to reward essential frontline grocery workers; limits on liability exposure for essential businesses; and strengthening of federal nutrition programs to feed hungry Americans.

The association recently reaffirmed these priorities in a letter to Congressional leaders as legislators continued to negotiate a package of pandemic relief measures before the end of the year.

“The independent grocery community appreciates your ongoing leadership throughout the COVID-19 pandemic, and we stand ready to continue our work in ensuring that Americans’ most basic needs are met during this unprecedented time,” NGA President and CEO Greg Ferrara wrote in the letter.

The full text of the letter can be read here.