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CDFA Legislative and Federal Affairs Update - September 1, 2020

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Legislative and Federal Affairs Update
September 1, 2020
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Legislative and Federal Affairs Update

Legislative Features

RESTAURANTS Act Gains Momentum
A bi-partisan bill to aid restaurants is gaining momentum, with over 180 co-sponsors and additional endorsements announced in the past few weeks.  The bill is officially titled the Real Economic Support That Acknowledges Unique Restaurant Assistance Needed To Survive Act of 2020, but is better known as the RESTAURANTS Act of 2020 ("the Act"). The Act was introduced in the Senate and in the House of Representatives. The Act currently has 182 co-sponsors in the House.

Local and Regional Farmer and Market Support Act Introduced in Congress
Congresswoman Alma Adams (D-NC-12) introduced the Act to provide meaningful support to farmers, ranchers, and critical local and regional food systems businesses. The Local Farmer Act would provide direct payments to local and regional food producers based on their historic revenue, and help their local markets as they both cope with the economic impacts of the coronavirus pandemic.

Sacramento, CA School District Installs 10 Broadband Towers for Students
The Patterson Joint Unified School District in Sacramento is partnering with Motorola to install 10 broadband towers across the district's eight campuses, with the more rural schools both receiving two. The district already had money set aside for 1-2 new towers, so CARES Act funding is enabling them to install all 10 in the next few months.

Legislation Introduced to Create New Soil Health Transition Loan Program
U.S. Representative Abigail Spanberger — Chair of the U.S. House Agriculture Committee's Subcommittee on Conservation and Forestry — announced the introduction of her legislation to establish a "Soil Health Transition Loan Program" at the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) to support farmers and producers looking to start or strengthen existing conservation efforts on their farms.

Senate Finance Chairman Introduces Bill to Extend CARES Act Spending Deadline
Senate Finance Committee Chairman Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa) and Sen. Maggie Hassan (D-N.H.) introduced the State and Local Coronavirus Relief Fund Extension Act on Tuesday to lengthen CARES Act funding for municipalities by one year to the end of 2021. The deadline to use COVID-19 funding is by the end of 2020.

$50B Bill to Fund Clean Energy Economy Proposed by Illinois Senator Dick Durbin
U.S. Sen. Dick Durbin, D-Ill., has introduced America's Clean Future Fund Act, a bill that would spur job creation by investing in a clean energy economy, achieve critical reductions in greenhouse gas emissions, facilitate a fair transition for workers from declining energy sectors and renew the U.S.' commitment to technology, innovation, and a sustainable future.

House Passes FY 2021 Spending Bill that Includes $50.6B for HUD, $273M for CDFI Fund
The House of Representatives passed H.R. 7616, which bundles the fiscal year 2021 spending bills for several departments. The bill includes $50.6 billion for HUD, including $25.7 billion for tenant-based rental assistance and $13.1 billion for project-based rental assistance.

Upcoming Events
Intro Infrastructure Finance WebCourse

CDFA Brownfields Financing Webinar Series: Brownfields and Opportunity Zones
Septermber 10, 2020 - 1:00 PM Eastern
Join CDFA as we closely examine the current regulations of Opportunity Zones, how communities are preparing themselves for Opportunity Zone investments, and how this tool can fit into the captial stack of a brownfield site in your community.

CDFA // BNY Mellon Development Finance Webcast Series: Understanding The Municipal Liquidity Facility
Tuesday, September 15, 2020 - 1:00 PM Eastern
During this installment of the CDFA // BNY Mellon Development Finance Webcast Series, finance experts will discuss the Municipal Liquidity Facility's requirements, market trends since the MLF's launch, and what can be done to make the MLF an attractive option for issuers.

CDFA-Bricker PACE Webinar Series: PACE Program Capitalization
Tuesday, September 22, 2020 - 11:00 AM - 1:00 PM Eastern
PACE program financing can be provided through private third parties, public bonds, or a combination of both, and within those options, there are many creative approaches being implemented across the nation. In 2017, The Kresge Foundation made a $3 million program-related investment into the St. Paul Port Authority's "Trillion BTU" and "MinnPACE" loan programs. This was a first of its kind PRI to help the community on-board PACE. This webinar will explore this and other creative methods that communities can utilize to capitalize their PACE program.

Federal Features

White House Releases Initial Assessment of Opportunity Zones Report
This report from the White House' Council of Economic Advisers compares the advantages of OZs with those of other Federal antipoverty programs and documents the characteristics of the nearly 8,800 low-income communities designated as OZs. It also quantifies the effect of OZs investment and finds that a large increase is already benefiting OZ residents while potentially having only a small effect on the Federal budget.

Rural Development Invests $46M in Rural Community Facilities in 16 States
The United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) is investing $46 million to improve critical community facilities to benefit 363,000 rural residents in 16 states. The investments can be used to build or upgrade schools, libraries, clinics, and public safety facilities.

HUD Issues Guidance for Coronavirus Relief Funds
HUD provided guidance and additional flexibility to states and units of local government who are utilizing their existing federal disaster recovery funds to support low- and moderate-income persons and vulnerable populations for disasters occurring in 2015, 2016, 2017, 2018, and 2019 during the coronavirus outbreak. The August 17 Federal Register notice grants extensions and clarifies submission deadlines for CDBG-DR grantees.

MTA Is Poised to Test Whether Fed Loans Beat Wall Street
The municipal-bond market will soon get a test of whether the Federal Reserve's decision to lower the price of its loans will draw governments to its virtually unused $500 billion lending program. New York's MTA, among the agencies hardest hit financially by the coronavirus shutdowns, is planning to auction off $465 million of three-year notes.

USDA Rural Development Invests $371M to Improve Rural Electric Infrastructure in 11 States
USDA Rural Development is investing $371 million to build and improve critical electric infrastructure that will benefit more than 222,000 rural residents and commercial customers in 11 states.

U.S. Department of Transportation Awards $464M in Grants to Revitalize National Bus Infrastructure
The Federal Transit Administration will award $464 million in transit infrastructure grants nationwide to improve the safety and reliability of America's bus systems and enhance mobility for transit riders. A total of 96 projects in 49 states and territories receive funding from FTA's Grants for Buses and Bus Facilities Program.

Fed to Lower Rates for Cities, States Seeking Short-Term Loans
The Federal Reserve said it would reduce the rates it charges cities and states seeking short-term loans from an emergency lending program that has seen little takeup so far. Changes to the program must be agreed upon by the Treasury Department, which has approved $35 billion to cover losses on up to $500 billion in loans extended by the Fed.

SBA Issues Additional PPP Loan Forgiveness Guidance
The SBA has published additional guidance regarding the forgiveness of Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) loans. The new FAQs clarify previous SBA guidance, provisions of the CARES Act, and the PPP loan forgiveness application.

HUD Awards $472M to Public Housing Authorities to Help Keep Residents Housed
HUD announced $472 million in CARES Act funding to help low-income families during the coronavirus pandemic. This funding can be used by Public Housing Authorities to help families assisted by Housing Choice Vouchers and Mainstream vouchers prevent, prepare for, and respond to the coronavirus. The funding, made available by the CARES Act, will be awarded to Public Housing Authorities across the Nation.

President Signs Executive Orders To Extend COVID-19 Economic Relief
President Trump has signed executive orders to extend economic relief after lawmakers were unable to reach an agreement on a new stimulus package. The orders include extending enhanced unemployment benefits and the federal eviction moratorium, imposing a payroll tax holiday, and further suspending federal student loan payments.

Federal Financing Clearinghouse Spotlight

CDFA's Federal Financing Clearinghouse is the only online resource cataloging the development finance programs offered by the federal government. Check out our featured agencies and programs below. >>> Learn More

Agency Seal Appalachian Regional Commission (ARC)

ARC Project Grants
ARC awards grants to projects that address one or more of ARC's five identified goals: Business Development and Entrepreneurship, Education and Training, Health Care, Physical Infrastructure,...

Agency Seal Delta Regional Authority (DRA)

DRA Local Development Districts
As front-line project managers, the local development districts within the DRA footprint provide technical assistance, application support and review, and other services to DRA and those entities in...

Agency Seal Denali Commission

Village Infrastructure Protection (VIP) Program
Village Infrastructure Protection (VIP) Program to assist rural Alaskan communities that are threatened by erosion, flooding and permafrost degradation. The goal of the VIP Program is to mitigate the...

Agency Seal Export-Import Bank of the United States (EXIM Bank)

Finance Lease Guarantees
EXIM supports competitive medium-term financing structured as finance leases in addition to financing structured as installment loans.

New Additions to the Online Resource Database

Transportation Infrastructure Investment as Economic Stimulus: Lessons from the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009
Bond Finance | Disaster Recovery & Relief | Economic Development | Infrastructure Finance | Legislative
Congress is considering federal funding for infrastructure to revive an economy damaged by COVID-19. Congress previously provided infrastructure funding for economic stimulus in the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009. This Congressional Research Service report examines approximately a decade or more of program data and observations that can be made with regard to the economic effects of ARRA funding for transportation infrastructure.

The Impact of Opportunity Zones: An Initial Assessment
Access to Capital | Community Development | Economic Development | Federal | Opportunity Zones
This report from the White House' Council of Economic Advisers compares the advantages of OZs with those of other Federal antipoverty programs and documents the characteristics of the nearly 8,800 low-income communities designated as OZs. It also quantifies the effect of OZs investment and finds that a large increase is already benefiting OZ residents while potentially having only a small effect on the Federal budget.

The Council of Development Finance Agencies is a national association dedicated to the advancement of development finance concerns and interests. CDFA is comprised of the nation's leading and most knowledgeable members of the development finance community representing public, private and non-profit entities alike. For more information visit CDFA.net or email info@cdfa.net

Council of Development Finance Agencies
100 E. Broad Street, Suite 1200
Columbus, OH 43215
(614) 705-1300


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