We are writing on behalf of the Board of the Partnership for New York City, which represents the leaders of the city’s business leadership. We have surveyed our members and come up with the following recommendations as the most important actions the federal government can take to address the COVID-19 crisis and give New York and other commercial centers around the country the best tools for economic recovery:
- Provide resources required by the healthcare system and first responders, including both equipment and increased Medicare reimbursement rates to cover extraordinary costs and permit hiring of additional personnel.
- In addition to the proposed aid to the airline industry, the stimulus bill must provide an immediate cash infusion to mass transit operations serving America’s major commercial centers. The Metropolitan Transportation Authority and New Jersey Transit need at least $5.2 billion to solve the precipitous decline in ridership and revenue as a result of federal and state response to the pandemic. Operating aid is necessary to keep those agencies in service and ensure mobility of essential personnel and sustain some level of economic activity.
- The stimulus should make capital immediately available to small business (SMEs) for the purpose of keeping workers employed and eligible for benefits for two months. SBA disaster loans do not effectively address the immediate issue of meeting payroll and, absent federal action, many of these businesses are likely to close and never re-open.
See the complete survey results. We appreciate all you are doing to combat this crisis and assure you that New Yorkers are committed to winning the battle against COVID-19 and a rapid recovery.
Steven Swartz, President & CEO, Hearst
Bill Ford, CEO, General Atlantic
Kathryn Wylde, President & CEO, Partnership for New York City