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In early September 2020, Representative Carolyn B. Maloney (D-NY), senior member of the House Financial Services Committee, was joined by stakeholders from the business community, including BCC members from the Independent Film & Television Alliance, Nareit, National Multifamily Housing Council, and the National Retail Federation, along with representatives from the insurance industry to emphasize the need for Congress to act quickly, and on a bi-partisan basis, to create a framework for insurance companies to offer business interruption insurance policies that cover future pandemics and government-mandated shutdowns.

The Federal backstop would make certain that these business interruption policies are both widely available and affordable for small businesses, and maintain marketplace stability.

Comments during the roundtable focused on Rep. Maloney’s legislative proposal, H.R. 7011, the Pandemic Risk Insurance Act of 2020 (PRIA), which she introduced in May 2020.

The following BCC members provided their perspectives during the conversation:

· Jean Prewitt, President and CEO, Independent Film & Television Alliance (IFTA)

· Steven A. Wechsler, President and CEO, Nareit

· Kevin Donnelly, Vice President for Government Affairs, National Multifamily Housing Council (NMHC)

· Leon Buck, Vice President for Government Relations, Banking and Financial Services, National Retail Federation

Video of the Sept. 10 roundtable discussion is available below:

Rep. Steve Stivers (R-OH), the Ranking Member on the House Financial Services’ Subcommittee on Housing, Community Development and Insurance, was interviewed by The Real Estate Roundtable’s President and CEO Jeff DeBoer on Sept 22 on the prospects for developing and enacting a federal pandemic risk-business continuity insurance program. Rep. Stivers played a key role in last year’s reauthorization of the Terrorism Risk Insurance Act (TRIA), and has expressed a strong interest in establishing a federal business continuity insurance program before there is a recurrence of pandemic or government-ordered shutdown in response to a different natural catastrophe. Rep. Stivers said he believes the upcoming Lame Duck session may consider a pandemic relief bill that, in his opinion, would require bi-partisan support in order to be successful. Mr. DeBoer mentioned to Rep. Stivers that the Roundtable is working with industry partners such as Nareit and other stakeholders through the newly formed Business Continuity Coalition (BCC) to develop with policymakers an effective federal insurance program that provides the economy with the coverage it needs to provide business continuity coverage in the face of pandemic risk.

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