ASAE and a coalition of more than 70 associations and nonprofits applauded the introduction of legislation last week to restore the employee retention tax credit (ERTC) for the last three months of 2021.

The ERTC was created by the CARES Act in 2020 to help companies and nonprofit organizations keep employees on payroll during the COVID-19 pandemic. Though it was set to run through 2021, Congress ended the ERTC early to help defray some of the costs of last year’s bipartisan infrastructure legislation.

Recognizing that small businesses and nonprofits are still reeling from the COVID-19 crisis, particularly as the omicron variant continues to impact the economy, the Employee Retention Tax Credit Reinstatement Act (S. 3625) was introduced Feb. 10 by Sens. Maggie Hassan (D-NH), Tim Scott (R-SC), Mark Warner (D-VA), Shelly Moore Capito (R-WV) and Ben Cardin (D-MD). The bill restores 2021 fourth-quarter access to the credit.

“The COVID-19 pandemic has had lasting effects on small businesses and nonprofits, including pressures on keeping workers employed,” said Sen. Cardin, who chairs the Senate Small Business and Entrepreneurship Committee. “I was proud to lead the establishment of the Employee Retention Tax Credit, which was extended and expanded through 2021. Since the credit was ended prematurely, we’ve heard from small businesses and nonprofits in Maryland who were counting on the credit’s support that have struggled to make ends meet. I’m proud to support this legislation and make good on our promise to support struggling employers.”

The legislation originated in the House (H.R. 6161) in December and has 54 bipartisan co-sponsors.

The coalition of organizations supporting the ERTC reinstatement bill is spearheaded by the National Automatic Merchandising Association (NAMA) and includes ASAE, NFIB, the International Franchise Association, National Restaurant Association, Independent Sector, National Council of Nonprofits and numerous other organizations.

“The American Society of Association Executives strongly supports restoring the Employee Retention Tax Credit (ERTC),” said ASAE President and CEO Michelle Mason, FASAE, CAE. “Employers across the economy relied on this important credit, but its desperately needed relief was cut short. Prematurely eliminating the ERTC harmed employers of all kinds, including thousands of associations and other nonprofits that were ineligible for the Paycheck Protection Program. ERTC provided them the only means to help retain their employees, pursue their missions and promote their members. Congress must restore the ERTC, and we applaud Senators Hassan, Scott, Warner, Capito and Cardin for introducing their critical legislation.”

Organizations interested in joining the coalition to restore the ERTC can contact Robert Jackson at NAMA at rjackson@namanow.org.