Washington – As Congress negotiates COVID-19 rescue legislation, Business Roundtable President & CEO Joshua Bolten today issued the following statement:
“Business Roundtable welcomes efforts by the Biden Administration and members of Congress from both parties to rapidly enact COVID-19 rescue legislation. We urge Congress to pass a significant package that prioritizes measures to defeat the pandemic and to deliver economic support to the millions of Americans and small businesses hit hardest by COVID-19.
“This legislation should focus on resources needed to mount a national vaccination campaign, including in underserved communities, to identify and defeat new strains, ramp up testing and invest in the public health workforce. Congress should also prioritize emergency resources for the individuals, families and businesses that are most vulnerable. This should include targeted assistance for individuals and small businesses, support for the safe and timely reopening of schools and funding to bridge the digital divide.
“Measures designed to promote a stronger and more durable economic recovery—including infrastructure and worker training investments—can and should be taken up in a follow-on recovery package. And, while we continue to support an increase in the federal minimum wage, we believe that the increase should be thoughtfully designed to reflect regional differences in wage rates and to ensure that the increase does not undermine small business recovery. These issues would be better debated in later legislation so as to not delay this round of relief, which is essential to defeating the pandemic and providing emergency economic assistance.”