AIA joins call for more COVID-19 recovery funds

The Aerospace Industries Association and 80 government contracting executives have asked congressional leaders to include more funds for covering costs related to the COVID-19 pandemic in a potential next round of economic relief legislation.

This latest message dated for Wednesday comes within a week since an initial group of eight CEOs wrote and signed a separate letter asking the White House and Defense Department to push for those funds. Industry and Pentagon leaders have said Congress did not set aside extra money for COVID-19 costs and are needed to cover other items beyond those of covering sick or paid leave.

Under one section of the first CARES Act stimulus law signed in late March, contractors can get reimbursement from DOD of the estimated costs to keep paying employees who cannot get to their designated work sites because of the pandemic.

First reported by Politico, the new letter signed by AIA CEO Eric Fanning and the other 80 executives said those authorities from CARES Act Section 3610 will expire Sept. 30 but need an extension to Dec. 31.

As that date approaches, the letter also says “expenses and claims are becoming clearer” and piling up for items such as facility closures, social distancing within those facilities, cleaning and sterilization procedures, the purchase of personal protective equipment and managing supply chain disruptions.

DOD acquisition chief Ellen Lord told the House Armed Services Committee in June that the department could need up to $10 billion for covering COVID-19 claims from companies as major programs get slowed down.

AIA sent the letter to House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-California), Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Kentucky), House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-California) and Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-New York).

About the Author

Ross Wilkers is a senior staff writer for Washington Technology. He can be reached at Follow him on Twitter: @rosswilkers. Also connect with him on LinkedIn.

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