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  • Ensuring Our Safety and Security through a 90-Day Suspension of the Direct Access Program for U.S.-Affiliated Iraqis

    Ensuring Our Safety and Security through a 90-Day Suspension of the Direct Access Program for U.S.-Affiliated Iraqis | site |


    (Information contained in U.S. Department of State press release dated: January 22, 2021)


    January 22, 2021
    Press statement
    Daniel B. Smith, Acting Secretary of State


    Ensuring Our Safety and Security through a 90-Day Suspension of the Direct Access Program for U.S.-Affiliated Iraqis


    Effective January 22, 2021, the United States is suspending the Direct Access Program for U.S.-Affiliated Iraqis for 90 days. As the result of a joint investigation by the U.S. Department of State’s Diplomatic Security Service and the Department of Homeland Security’s Office of the Inspector General, the Department of Justice is prosecuting individuals for stealing U.S. government records from the Department of State’s Worldwide Refugee Admissions Processing System to take advantage...
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  • DHS Statement on the Suspension of New Enrollments in the Migrant Protection Protocols Program

    U.S. Department of Homeland Security Statement on the Suspension of New Enrollments in the Migrant Protection Protocols Program | site |



    (Information contained in U.S. Department of Homeland Security [DHS] press release dated: January 20, 2021) Today, DHS is announcing the suspension of new enrollments in the Migrant Protection Protocols (MPP) program. Effective tomorrow, January 21, the Department will cease adding individuals into the program. However, current COVID-19 non-essential travel restrictions, both at the border and in the region, remain in place at this time. All current MPP participants should remain where they are, pending further official information from U.S. government officials. Please note: Individuals outside of the United States will not be eligible for legal status under the bill President Biden sent to Congress today. The legalization provisions in that bill apply only to people already living in the United States....
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  • SBA says 60,000 Paycheck Protection Program Loans Approved in First Week

    SBA says 60,000 Paycheck Protection Program Loans Approved in First Week

    U.S. Small Business Administration says 60,000 Paycheck Protection Program Loans Approved in First Week | site |



    SBA says its dedicated access to community financial institutions helped underserved small businesses



    (Information contained in U.S. Small Business Administration [SBA] press release dated: January 19, 2021) Washington - - Today, the U.S. Small Business Administration announced that it has approved approximately 60,000 PPP loan applications submitted by nearly 3,000 lenders, for over $5 billion, between the program’s re-opening on Monday, Jan. 11, at 9 a.m. ET through to Sunday, Jan. 17. Last week, the PPP provided dedicated access to community financial institutions that specialize in serving underserved communities, including minority-, women- and veteran-owned small businesses from Monday through Thursday, joined Friday by smaller lenders. As of today, Jan. 19, the Paycheck Protection Program is open to all participating le...
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  • USDA Offers Additional Assistance for Certain Producers Through Coronavirus Food Assistance Program

    USDA Offers Additional Assistance for Certain Producers Through Coronavirus Food Assistance Program | site |


    (Information contained in U.S. Department of Agriculture press release dated: January 15, 2021) (Washington, D.C., January 15, 2021) – U.S. Secretary of Agriculture Sonny Perdue announced the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) will provide additional assistance through the Coronavirus Food Assistance Program (CFAP), expanding eligibility for some agricultural producers and commodities as well as updating payments to accurately compensate some producers who already applied for the program. Producers who are now eligible and those who need to modify existing applications due to these updates can contact USDA’s Farm Service Agency (FSA) between Jan. 19 and Feb. 26. Some of these changes are being made to align with the recently enacted Consolidated Appropriations Act of 2021 while others are discretionary changes being made in response...
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  • U.S. Department of Labor Revises Interpretation, issues new Guidance clarifying Filing, Compliance Requirements in H-1B Visa Program

    U.S. Department of Labor Revises Interpretation, issues new Guidance clarifying Filing, Compliance Requirements in H-1B Visa Program | site |




    (Information contained in U.S. Department of Labor press release dated: January 15, 2021)

    Washington, DC - - The U.S. Department of Labor’s Employment and Training Administration (ETA) and Wage and Hour Division (WHD) today announced a new interpretation of their regulations and accompanying guidance in ongoing efforts to protect American jobs and ensure employers pay temporary foreign workers admitted under the H-1B visa program as the law requires.

    ETA’s Office of Foreign Labor Certification (OFLC) is revising its interpretation of its regulations concerning which employers of H-1B workers must file a Labor Condition Application (LCA). OFLC now interprets its regulations to require all common-law employers of H-1B workers, including any secondary employers who meet the common-law test,
    ...
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  • NHTSA Requests Public Comment on New Car Assessment Program Modernization

    National Highway Traffic Safety Administration Requests Public Comment on New Car Assessment Program Modernization | site |


    Proposed Upgrades to Five-Star Safety Ratings Program Would Address Advanced Driving Features, Pedestrian Safety


    (Information contained in National Highway Traffic Safety Administration [NHTSA] press release dated: January 14, 2021)

    January 14, 2021 | Washington, DC - - The U.S. Department of Transportation’s National Highway Traffic Safety Administration today issued a request for public comment on proposed upgrades to the New Car Assessment Program. “Thanks in part to NCAP, new vehicles today are much safer than a generation ago,” said NHTSA Deputy Administrator James Owens. “Even so, there are still too many fatalities and serious injuries in crashes every year, so it is critical that vehicles keep getting safer in the future, and a modernized NCAP will better enable American families to select v
    ...
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  • United States to Host World Data System’s International Program Office

    United States to Host World Data System’s International Program Office

    United States to Host World Data System’s International Program Office | site |


    (Information contained in U.S. Department of State's Office of the Spokesperson press release media note: January 14, 2021)

    The Department of State is proud to see that the World Data System (WDS), a non-governmental body for norms and standards for scientific data, has selected the Oak Ridge Institute at the University of Tennessee (ORI at UT) to host its International Program Office for a five-year term starting in 2021. The Office will promote U.S. leadership in values-based international norms and standards for data and scientific research over the next five years. With the strong support of the Department of State, this selection is a testament to American scientific leadership and innovation, reflecting U.S. universities’ and laboratories’ long-standing tradition of excellence, freedom, openness, and transparency in science and technology. The Department ...
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  • SBA Re-Opening Paycheck Protection Program to Small Lenders on Friday, January 15

    U.S. Small Business Administration Re-Opening Paycheck Protection Program to Small Lenders on Friday, January 15 and All Lenders on Tuesday, January 19 | site |



    Lenders with $1 Billion or Less in Assets Will be Able to Submit First and Second Draw PPP Applications on Friday – Continuing Dedicated Access for Community-Based Lenders


    (Information contained in U.S. Small Business Administration [SBA] press release: January 13, 2021)

    Washington - - The U.S. Small Business Administration, in consultation with the U.S. Treasury Department, will re-open the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) loan portal to PPP-eligible lenders with $1 billion or less in assets for First and Second Draw applications on Friday, January 15, 2021 at 9 am ET. The portal will fully open on Tuesday, January 19, 2021 to all participating PPP lenders to submit First and Second Draw loan applications to SBA. Earlier in the week, SBA granted dedicated P...
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  • SBA says 1.1 Million Paycheck Protection Program Loans Forgiven So Far Totaling Over 100 Billion Dollars

    U.S. Small Business Administration says 1.1 Million Paycheck Protection Program Loans Forgiven So Far Totaling Over $100 Billion | site |



    SBA says Small borrowers make up vast majority of forgiveness applicants


    (Information contained in U.S. Small Business Administration [SBA] press release: January 12, 2021) Washington - - The U.S. Small Business Administration has already forgiven more than 1.1 million Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) loans for over $100 billion, providing an extraordinary amount of critical relief to America’s small businesses just 3 months since the earliest PPP borrowers’ covered periods ended. “Today’s news is a key indicator that the PPP is working for all small businesses across our Nation,” said SBA Administrator Jovita Carranza. “For any eligible small business continuing to struggle due to the coronavirus pandemic, the Program has re-opened for new and certain existing PPP borrowers, and we encou...
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  • U.S. Small Business Administration Re-Opens PPP to Community Financial Institutions First

    U.S. Small Business Administration Re-Opens Paycheck Protection Program to Community Financial Institutions First | site |



    Community Financial Institutions get dedicated access starting today



    (Information contained in U.S. Small Business Administration [SBA] press release dated: January 11, 2021)

    Washington - - The U.S. Small Business Administration, in consultation with the U.S. Treasury Department, re-opened the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) loan portal today at 9 am ET. SBA is continuing its dedicated commitment to underserved small businesses and to addressing potential access to capital barriers by initially granting PPP access exclusively to community financial institutions (CFIs) that typically serve these concerns.

    When the PPP loan portal re-opened today, it initially accepted First Draw PPP loan applications from participating CFIs, which include Community Development Financial Institutions (CDFIs),
    ...
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  • IRS says Eligible Paycheck Protection Program expenses now Deductible

    IRS says Eligible Paycheck Protection Program expenses now Deductible

    U.S. Internal Revenue Service says Eligible Paycheck Protection Program expenses now Deductible | site |



    (Information contained in U.S. Internal Revenue Service [IRS] press release: January 6, 2021)

    Washington - - The Treasury Department and the Internal Revenue Service issued guidance today allowing deductions for the payments of eligible expenses when such payments would result (or be expected to result) in the forgiveness of a loan (covered loan) under the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP).

    Today's guidance, Revenue Ruling 2021-02, reflects changes to law contained in the COVID-related Tax Relief Act of 2020, enacted as part of the Consolidated Appropriations Act, 2021 (Act), Public Law 116-260, which was signed into law on December 27, 2020. The COVID-related Tax Relief Act of 2020 amended the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act (CARES Act) to say that no deduction is denied, no tax attribute is reduced, and no basi
    ...
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  • Federal Emergency Management Agency Announces Reinsurance Program to Manage Future Flood Risk in 2021

    Federal Emergency Management Agency Announces Reinsurance Program to Manage Future Flood Risk in 2021 | site |



    (Information contained in Federal Emergency Management Agency [FEMA] press release: January 5, 2021) Washington - - FEMA has announced its 2021 traditional reinsurance placement for the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP), continuing its risk management practice against catastrophic flood losses. Reinsurance is a financial risk management tool used by private insurance companies and public entities to protect themselves from large financial losses. If a qualifying catastrophic flood event occurs, reinsurance companies cover a portion of the NFIP’s losses to enhance FEMA’s ability to pay flood insurance claims without borrowing from the U.S. Treasury. FEMA transferred an additional $1.153 billion of the NFIP’s financial risk to the private reinsurance market. This annual reinsurance agreement is effective throughout 2021 with 32 private re...
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  • U.S. Department of Transportation Announces Research Topics for Upcoming Small Business Innovation Research Program Solicitation

    U.S. Department of Transportation Announces Research Topics for Upcoming Small Business Innovation Research Program Solicitation | site |


    Six Department Operating Administrations are expected to issue a total of 13 topics for this year’s SBIR Solicitation, totaling $1.9 million


    (Information contained in U.S. Department of Transportation press release dated: January 7, 2021)

    Washington - - The U.S. Department of Transportation (the Department) has issued its Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) program Fiscal Year 2021 pre-solicitation to provide a preview of the 13 topics expected to be featured in this year’s solicitation. The pre-solicitation also includes an opportunity to submit questions via the Department’s SBIR Q&A website. Information on the proposed topics and how to participate in the Q&A can be found here. “Small businesses are responsible for two-thirds of net new jobs created in America; this small busin
    ...
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  • U.S. Department of the Treasury Launches 25 Billion Dollars Emergency Rental Assistance Program

    U.S. Department of the Treasury Launches $25 Billion Emergency Rental Assistance Program | site |


    Opens Portal to Begin Disbursement of Funding to State, Local, and Tribal Governments



    Washington - - On January 5, 2021, the U.S. Department of the Treasury launched the $25 billion Emergency Rental Assistance Program (ERAP) established by the Consolidated Appropriations Act, 2021. The ERAP assists households that are unable to pay rent and utilities due to the COVID-19 pandemic. The funds are provided directly to States (including the District of Columbia), U.S. Territories, local governments with more than 200,000 residents, the Department of Hawaiian Home Lands, and Indian tribes (defined to include certain Alaska native corporations) or the tribally designated housing entity of an Indian tribe (collectively, “eligible grantees”). Eligible grantees must use the funds to provide assistance to eligible households through existing or newly...
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  • FCC seeks Public Input on New 3.2 Billion Dollars Emergency Broadband Benefit Program

    Federal Communications Commission seeks Public Input on New $3.2 Billion Emergency Broadband Benefit Program | site |


    Initiative to Connect Low-Income Households Funded Through Recent Congressional Appropriation Responds to FCC’s Call to Keep Americans Connected


    (Information contained in Federal Communications Commission [FCC] press releasd dated: January 4, 2021) Washington, January 4, 2021 - - The Federal Communications Commission’s Wireline Competition Bureau today issued a request for comment on how best to administer a new $3.2 billion Emergency Broadband Benefit Program created by Congress to help low-income consumers access the Internet. The Consolidated Appropriations Act of 2021 directed the Commission to create the program, which would reimburse participating companies for providing discounted broadband service and connected devices to eligible households during the COVID-19 pandemic. “We’re excited to get to work on thi...
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  • Staff Reporter 1
    Ensuring Our Safety and Security through a 90-Day Suspension of the Direct Access Program for U.S.-Affiliated Iraqis
    by Staff Reporter 1
    Ensuring Our Safety and Security through a 90-Day Suspension of the Direct Access Program for U.S.-Affiliated Iraqis | site |


    (Information contained in U.S. Department of State press release dated: January 22, 2021)


    January 22, 2021
    Press statement
    Daniel B. Smith, Acting Secretary of State


    Ensuring Our Safety and Security through a 90-Day Suspension of the Direct Access Program for U.S.-Affiliated Iraqis


    Effective January 22, 2021, the United States is suspending the Direct Access Program for U.S.-Affiliated Iraqis for 90 days. As the result of a joint investigation by the U.S. Department of State’s Diplomatic Security Service and the Department of Homeland Security’s Office of the Inspector General, the Department of Justice is prosecuting individuals for stealing U.S. government records from the Department of State’s Worldwide Refugee Admissions Processing System to take advantage...
    01-23-2021, 04:16 AM
  • Staff Reporter 1
    DHS Statement on the Suspension of New Enrollments in the Migrant Protection Protocols Program
    by Staff Reporter 1
    U.S. Department of Homeland Security Statement on the Suspension of New Enrollments in the Migrant Protection Protocols Program | site |



    (Information contained in U.S. Department of Homeland Security [DHS] press release dated: January 20, 2021) Today, DHS is announcing the suspension of new enrollments in the Migrant Protection Protocols (MPP) program. Effective tomorrow, January 21, the Department will cease adding individuals into the program. However, current COVID-19 non-essential travel restrictions, both at the border and in the region, remain in place at this time. All current MPP participants should remain where they are, pending further official information from U.S. government officials. Please note: Individuals outside of the United States will not be eligible for legal status under the bill President Biden sent to Congress today. The legalization provisions in that bill apply only to people already living in the United States....
    01-21-2021, 02:06 AM
  • Staff Reporter 1
    SBA says 60,000 Paycheck Protection Program Loans Approved in First Week
    by Staff Reporter 1
    U.S. Small Business Administration says 60,000 Paycheck Protection Program Loans Approved in First Week | site |



    SBA says its dedicated access to community financial institutions helped underserved small businesses



    (Information contained in U.S. Small Business Administration [SBA] press release dated: January 19, 2021) Washington - - Today, the U.S. Small Business Administration announced that it has approved approximately 60,000 PPP loan applications submitted by nearly 3,000 lenders, for over $5 billion, between the program’s re-opening on Monday, Jan. 11, at 9 a.m. ET through to Sunday, Jan. 17. Last week, the PPP provided dedicated access to community financial institutions that specialize in serving underserved communities, including minority-, women- and veteran-owned small businesses from Monday through Thursday, joined Friday by smaller lenders. As of today, Jan. 19, the Paycheck Protection Program is open to all participating le...
    01-20-2021, 08:48 AM
  • Staff Reporter 1
    USDA Offers Additional Assistance for Certain Producers Through Coronavirus Food Assistance Program
    by Staff Reporter 1
    USDA Offers Additional Assistance for Certain Producers Through Coronavirus Food Assistance Program | site |


    (Information contained in U.S. Department of Agriculture press release dated: January 15, 2021) (Washington, D.C., January 15, 2021) – U.S. Secretary of Agriculture Sonny Perdue announced the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) will provide additional assistance through the Coronavirus Food Assistance Program (CFAP), expanding eligibility for some agricultural producers and commodities as well as updating payments to accurately compensate some producers who already applied for the program. Producers who are now eligible and those who need to modify existing applications due to these updates can contact USDA’s Farm Service Agency (FSA) between Jan. 19 and Feb. 26. Some of these changes are being made to align with the recently enacted Consolidated Appropriations Act of 2021 while others are discretionary changes being made in response...
    01-19-2021, 12:27 PM
  • Staff Reporter 1
    U.S. Department of Labor Revises Interpretation, issues new Guidance clarifying Filing, Compliance Requirements in H-1B Visa Program
    by Staff Reporter 1
    U.S. Department of Labor Revises Interpretation, issues new Guidance clarifying Filing, Compliance Requirements in H-1B Visa Program | site |




    (Information contained in U.S. Department of Labor press release dated: January 15, 2021)

    Washington, DC - - The U.S. Department of Labor’s Employment and Training Administration (ETA) and Wage and Hour Division (WHD) today announced a new interpretation of their regulations and accompanying guidance in ongoing efforts to protect American jobs and ensure employers pay temporary foreign workers admitted under the H-1B visa program as the law requires.

    ETA’s Office of Foreign Labor Certification (OFLC) is revising its interpretation of its regulations concerning which employers of H-1B workers must file a Labor Condition Application (LCA). OFLC now interprets its regulations to require all common-law employers of H-1B workers, including any secondary employers who meet the common-law test,
    ...
    01-19-2021, 11:59 AM

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