Vol. XIX, Issue 31

May 28, 2020

CARES Act Update—House Passes PPP Changes with Broad Bipartisan Support

Today, the U.S. House of Representatives passed the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) Flexibility Act, H.R. 7010, by a vote of 417-1 (a rare level of bipartisan consensus). The bill was passed under a procedure called "suspension of the rules," which requires a 2/3 vote. Though to become law the bill would still need to pass in the Senate, the overwhelming bipartisan support in the House may foretell good prospects in the Senate. However, a similar pending Senate bill differs from the House version.

The House bill has changed slightly from the introduced text (H.R. 6886), which Wespath described in the May 21, 2020 On Board Express (“CARES Act Update—Congress Contemplating PPP Modifications”). One significant change from the earlier version eases requirements for full-time employees:

In addition, H.R. 7010 would make the following changes:

If approved, these changes would be effective as of the date of enactment of the Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security Act (CARES Act)—March 27, 2020.

We are closely watching legislative developments and will keep you informed as events progress. In addition, we are working on UMC-tailored guidance summarizing the loan forgiveness regulations issued by the Small Business Administration late last week, and hope to publish it soon.

REMINDER: Benefits Access Updates Coming Soon

Updates to Benefits Access are scheduled to take place as early as Saturday, June 6. Communication to participants about these updates will continue via our Wespath Weekly Update e-mails. This week's e-mail includes a preview of the new login and homepage screens.

With an updated Benefits Access, participants will find the site:

The Benefits Access website address and participants' personal login information remains the same. All the tools and information participants are accustomed to are still there—likely with fewer clicks to get there.

All documents on wespath.org will be updated to reflect new Benefits Access site navigation. After June 6, we encourage you to check your conference websites and offices for materials that may contain old navigation directions and replace them. Please note the navigation and design of the Benefits Access Portal for Plan Sponsors and the Benefits Access App remains the same.

If you have any questions about the updates to Benefits Access, please contact Tony Prestipino at 1-847-866-4560 or tprestipino@wespath.org or your conference liaison.

Weekly Updates to Participants

This week's participant e-blast communication was sent yesterday, May 27. It follows up our series on security risks with a list of things to do if your accounts have been compromised. The update also includes a sneak peek of the new login and homepage screens that will be implemented with the BA enhancement in June and a video developed to address a participant question about the reliability of annuity payments. Click here to view the version sent to HealthFlex participants; click here to view the non-HealthFlex email.

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