Support for Bipartisan RESTAURANTS Act Grows in the Senate

Support for Bipartisan RESTAURANTS Act Grows in the Senate; 12 More Bipartisan Senators Cosponsor Bill, Including Sens. Murkowski, Brown, Manchin, King, Booker and Gillibrand

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House Bill Is Cosponsored by 194 U.S. Representatives.

Support for Bipartisan RESTAURANTS Act Grows

WASHINGTON, D.C. — Today, the Independent Restaurant Coalition (IRC), released the following statement regarding the recent addition of 12 senators to the cosponsor list for the bipartisan RESTAURANTS Act:

“Forty percent of the Senate, representing more than half of the country, has spoken: independent restaurants need to be saved right now. The surge in bipartisan support in the Senate for the RESTAURANTS Act is an indication of the dire situation neighborhood restaurants and bars face. As summer winds down and outdoor dining becomes more difficult, restaurants will lose one of their few remaining lifelines for survival. The 16 million Americans whose livelihoods are supported by independent restaurants are now counting on Congress to pass the RESTAURANTS Act before it’s too late.”

The senators signing on to the RESTAURANTS Act in the past week include:

  • Cory Booker (D-NJ)
  • Sherrod Brown (D-OH)
  • Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY)
  • Angus King (I-ME)
  • Joe Manchin III (D-WV)
  • Robert Menendez (D-NJ)
  • Lisa Murkowski (R-AK)
  • Jack Reed (D-RI)
  • Jacky Rosen (D-NV)
  • Brian Schatz (D-HI)
  • Jeanne Shaheen (D-NH)
  • Jon Tester (D-MT)

In a tweet thread supporting the bill today, Sen. Murkowsi (R-AK) said: “The impact of #COVID19 on the restaurant industry has been far-reaching, causing many to unfortunately close for good. These struggling businesses are in dire need immediate financial assistance… That’s why I’m cosponsoring the RESTAURANTS Act, a bill led by @SenatorWicker in which would provide certain restaurants with upfront capital to keep their businesses going and Alaskans employed.”

Independent restaurants and bars have been fighting for the inclusion of the RESTAURANTS Act in this round of federal relief. The bill would establish a $120 billion fund for small restaurants and bars to cover costs such as payroll, rent, supplies, and PPE. Originally introduced in June by Sens. Roger Wicker (R-MS) and Kyrsten Sinema (D-AZ), alongside Reps. Earl Blumenauer (D-OR 3) and Brian Fitzpatrick (R-PA 1), the RESTAURANTS Act now has 194 cosponsors in the House and 39 cosponsors in the Senate.

About The IRC:

The Independent Restaurant Coalition was formed by chefs and independent restaurant owners across the country who have built a grassroots movement to secure vital protections for the nation’s 500,000 independent restaurants and the more than 11 million restaurant workers impacted by the coronavirus pandemic.