Hotel industry seeks more federal funding to keep workers during pandemic

Posted at 6:27 AM, Apr 28, 2020
and last updated 2020-04-28 07:29:47-04

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WTVF) — With the coronavirus outbreak, less people are staying at hotels. Despite getting help from the federal government, hotel owners are still worried about their future.

The industry is asking for more funding through the Paycheck Protection Program to help them retain their staff during the crisis.

The American Hotel and Lodging Association sent a long letter to prominent members of Congress asking them for more funding and updates to the CARES act to help keep workers. The letter includes 74 pages of signatures, including two full pages of hotel owners from Tennessee.

With revenues down, AHLA is asking to increase the loan limit from 250% average payroll to 800% of all their covered costs.

While PPP loans are designed to help business owners pay labor, mortgage, rent and utilities, there's much more that business owners say needs to be covered somehow. With more funding, they say, it’ll help avoid layoffs.

To put it in perspective of how hard Nashville's hotel industry has been hit during this pandemic, in March, occupancy was down 45% compared to the same month last year.