Movie Theater Owners Launch Lobbying Effort for Federal Loans

The National Association of Theatre Owners (NATO) has launched an effort dubbed “#SaveOurCinemas” with the goal of convincing members of Congress to pass the “RESTART Act” which would provide forgivable seven-year loans to theaters.

“Without your help, we could lose our beloved cinemas and a cherished American pastime. I urge you to support the RESTART Act (S. 3814/H.R. 7481), and to please press Treasury and the Federal Reserve to implement more relief measures for cinemas of all sizes,” reads a pre-written text which users can send to their representatives at saveourcinemas.com.

The bipartisan bill currently sits with 13 sponsors in the House and 11 sponsors in the Senate. It expands the Paycheck Protection Program and established a new program that provides up to seven-year long loans for businesses with less than 5,000 full-time employees.

AMC Theaters, the nation’s largest theater chain, employed 3,952 full-time and 34,920 part-time employees as of December 31, 2019.

NATO represents over 35,000 domestic screens and also organizes the annual CinemaCon convention, which was cancelled this year.

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