Motorcoach Industry on Track to Receive Major Economic Relief

HARWICH – The United Motorcoach Association has announced that the motorcoach industry is on track to receive major economic relief.

The “Coronavirus Economic Relief for Transportation Services Act” was introduced to congress by Maine Senator Susan Collins and Rhode Island Senator Jack Reed.     

“Some of our New England senators from Maine and from Rhode Island are putting forward a bill to support the motorcoach industry. Specifically it’s called the CERTS Act,” Cape Destinations President Peggy Garrahan.  

“I think it’s for about $10 billion to try to help through grants and loans to keep the motorcoach industry afloat through the end of the year, so we are hopeful about that.”

The motorcoach industry has been severely impacted by the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic.

In the spring, over 1,000 buses from different motorcoach companies took to Washington D.C. to raise awareness about how the industry had been impacted up to that point.

If the act gets approved it would provide $10 billion in emergency economic relief funding in the form of grants and other economic assistance to motorcoach operators, school bus companies, U.S. flag passenger vessel operators, and other U.S. transportation service providers designated by the U.S. secretary of the Treasury.

“It’s to help us hold onto our employees until business can pick back up,” continued Garrahan.

“If things don’t happen soon it’s going to be hard to keep this going.”

Garrahan added that Cape Destinations business is down roughly 95 percent from last year.

“From April through June last year to April through June this year our charter business is down 95 percent,” she said.

“It’s getting pretty dire for the motorcoach industry.”

Though times are tough, Cape Destinations is actively providing services with precautions in place.

“We are operating, we have put a lot of procedures in place, we work with all of our customers with what our expectations and what their expectations are, we’ve purchased a lot of new equipment that helps with the sanitizing of all of our vehicles, we do a complete COVID cleaning of every vehicle,” said Garraham.  

“Drivers are all in masks, we keep some distancing, especially on any of our coaches, we keep the first row closed off so there is distance between drivers and the passengers.”

Garraham said that Cape Destinations has been providing services to workers coming to the Cape to work for the summer at hotels and restaurants.

However she noted that the motorcoach industry is dependent on being able to provide services to larger groups.

“Whether it’s sporting events, weddings, nights out, until that can happen we are at a standstill,” said Garraham.

For more information on Cape Destinations, click here.

About Luke Leitner

Luke Leitner grew up in Watertown Massachusetts and now lives in West Yarmouth on the Cape. He has been a part of the news team in the CapeCod.com News Center since the spring of 2019. He studied business communications at Western New England University.



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