Trump company seeks help from UK, Ireland to pay golf course workers after furloughing staff in US
The Trump Organization has reportedly sought bailout funds from the UK and Ireland to help pay the salaries of the workers at three of its goal courses in Scotland and Ireland. The reports emerged after the organization was legally barred in the US from seeking such aid. The firm, owned beneficially by President Donald Trump, reportedly has furloughed 2,000 employees in America.
Run by President Trump's two eldest sons, the Trump Organization does not appear immune to the economic crisis resulting from the coronavirus linked shutdowns. The company's core hotel and gold businesses, which are heavily dependant on travel and tourism for income, have been hit hard, losing an estimated $1 million per day in revenue, according to the Wall Street Journal.
The federal law governing the national bailout in the United States particularly prohibited the Trump Organization from seeking any government aid, including loans to cover its employees' payroll during the coronavirus shutdown. Trump properties have hence furloughed more than 2,000 workers without pay.
The Trump Organization, however, does not face any such legal restrictions on aid in Europe, where it operates golf courses and resorts in Aberdeen and Turnberry in Scotland, and Doonbeg in Ireland. The firm is now seeking government aid to pay salaries of bartenders, bagpipers, and other employees at the European locations, Bloomberg reports. The firm, however, has drawn criticism from some for seeking aid in Europe.
An elected official in Aberdeen and a Trump critic, Martin Ford, told the outlet: "The huge tab for this will be borne throughout the whole population through higher taxes. If what he says about his personal wealth is true, Trump doesn't need the money, and I don't see why UK taxpayers of the future should be helping him out."
A program was officially launched in the UK on Monday, April 20, to cover nearly 80 percent of workers' salaries capped at 2,500 pounds ( nearly $3,100). The program, ever since its launch, has been flooded with applications. A similar program has been running in Ireland for several weeks, which covers 70 percent of furloughed staff's weekly take-home pay as long as they are on a payroll. The payments, however, are subject to a cap.
To apply for the benefits, companies must reach out on behalf of their workers, and are encouraged to make up the difference between the aid received and the workers' regular salary. It is not yet clear whether the Trump Organization has committed to pay for the difference while applying for aid.
Trump Organization recently asked the US federal government to alter the terms of the long-term lease it holds on the Trump International Hotel in Washington, DC. The company reportedly pays nearly $268,000 a month, or $3 million a year, to the Government Services Administration for using the federally owned building for its hotel, the New York Times reported. Now, the firm is asking the government for any relief that it might be providing to other federal tenants of the building.
The president's son, Eric Trump, in a statement on Tuesday, April 21, said: "Just treat us the same. Whatever that maybe is fine."