Press Release

McHenry Introduces Legislation to Confront the Impact of the Coronavirus With Innovative Solutions

Yesterday, Congressman Patrick McHenry (NC-10), the Republican Leader of the House Financial Services Committee, introduced three bills in the ongoing effort to combat the economic and public health impact of coronavirus (COVID-19) through innovation and technology. In response to President Trump’s call for a whole-of-government approach, McHenry is proposing these first steps to help businesses of all sizes, employees, and American consumers in the midst of this public health crisis.

“We can’t take on a new threat with old tactics,” said Congressman McHenry.  “We need whole-of-government solutions that embrace our technological capabilities and support what separates our nation from the rest—our small businesses, innovators, and entrepreneurs. By making small regulatory changes we can unleash the power of our private sector, providing support to job creators and American consumers in this uncertain time. We need to take a 21st century approach to combatting the impacts of a public health crisis in our modern world and these bills are a good start. I am hopeful Committee Democrats will work with us to move these swiftly through the Committee and to the House floor for a vote.”

Below are descriptions of the three bills McHenry introduced yesterday:

The Crowdfunding to Combat the Coronavirus Act

This bill creates a $1 billion prize for creating a COVID-19 vaccine that must be affordable and widely available. Additionally, it eliminates offering ceilings in Regulation Crowdfunding, Reg. A, and Reg. A+ for startups and small businesses working to combat COVID-19, providing support for job creators while encouraging medical innovation that could save lives.

The Relief for Small Businesses Through Micro-Offerings Act

This bill would create a new micro-offerings exemption to allow broader access to capital for entrepreneurs and small businesses. This provides necessary support to concerned job creators whose workforce or product may be negatively impacted by COVID-19 and any shortage in traditional bank lending. Micro-lending has a demonstrated track record for providing much-needed capital to entrepreneurs—often women and minorities—in underbanked communities, helping them start and grow their businesses.

The Gig Economy Infrastructure Act

This bill expands the category of workers that can be compensated with equity compensation to gig workers. Gig workers can be food delivery couriers, contract workers, or rideshare drivers, just to name a few, and are critical in our technology driven world. This bill provides support to these workers and ensures they can continue to serve our communities in this environment.