Tuesday, March 31, 2020
Dear ICSC Members,
As we shared last week, ICSC viewed the passage of the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act and the extraordinary actions taken by the Federal Reserve, while historic in scope, as only first steps. Given the enormous scale of this crisis, we believe more must be done to address the unprecedented economic challenges facing our nation. Without additional urgent federal action, long‑term damage to the financial markets, rampant unemployment, and irreparable harm to communities are a near certainty.
Today, ICSC joined a broad coalition of the business community in urging the establishment of the COVID‑19 Business and Employee Continuity and Recovery Fund ("Recovery Fund"). This letter was delivered to Administration and Congressional Leaders. The Recovery Fund would be underwritten by the federal government and operate under the authority of a special federal administrator. We believe the establishment of the Recovery Fund is the most holistic approach that has been offered to address the economic impact of this crisis, without choosing industry winners or losers. The continuity of cash flow provided to businesses will enable their efforts to retain and rehire employees and emerge better positioned to advance an economic recovery. We believe this framework can assist all businesses impacted by COVID‑19 regardless of size, industry or location.
ICSC also delivered a second letter today requesting that appropriate federal government officials coordinate rules for a temporary forbearance of secured and unsecured debt obligations underlying the shopping center industry, including amounts owed to commercial banks, life insurance companies, holders of commercial mortgage‑backed securities (CMBS) and publicly traded bonds. We also requested inclusion of CMBS in the Federal Reserve's recently introduced Term Asset‑Backed Secured Loan Facility (TALF).
With the majority of the estimated $6.7 trillion of consumer activity generated by the retail, food‑and‑beverage, entertainment and consumer service industries occurring within America's shopping centers, the future of the U.S. economy is very much intertwined with the fate of our industry. Working with our members and collaborating with relevant groups, ICSC will continue to tirelessly advocate and represent our industry. Thank you for your continued support and we hope you are safe and healthy.
President & CEO
Founder & CEO
Raider Hill Advisors