The application window for a small business assistance program will close at the end of the day on Saturday, with negotiations on another relief bill in the event of an accident.
The Paycheck Protection Program (PPP), created as part of the CARES Act of March, provides loans to companies with less than 500 employees.
The application window was initially set to run by the end of June. After briefly closing its doors, Congress passed legislation that reopened and extended the application period through August 8th.
The program is seen as one of the most successful parts of the $ 2.2 trillion bill of March, which also included direct payments to individuals and hundreds of billions in relief for affected sectors such as airlines.
Under PPP, a company can forgive its loan, as long as the money is used to keep employees on paychecks. Congress has appropriated about $ 650 billion for the program.
Lawmakers have made a few tweaks since March, including changing an initial requirement that 75 percent of the loan should be used on payment transactions and 25 percent could be used on expenses such as rent in a ratio of 60-40. They extended the window that company had to spend the money and still qualify for loan forgiveness.
As of August 6, the Small Business Administration had approved nearly 5.16 million loans, for a total of $ 523.4 billion spent on the money that was green-lighted by lawmakers.
But the PPP outage has suffered glitches, including an overwhelming SBA website and confusion over the rules for applications.
The Associated Press reported that hundreds of millions went to companies owned by large donors President TrumpDonald John TrumpJoe Arpaio loses bid for his old position as Sheriff Trump blames opinion that Russia denigrates Biden: ‘No one is harder on Russia than I am’ Trump truncates executive orders over economy but will not yet report, and several companies affiliated with lawmakers received assistance. Big chains also revealed that they could use snooping to get PPP funding.
Lawmakers and the administration are interested in doing a second tranche of PPP. But the program is tied in larger talks over a fifth coronavirus package that crashed on Friday with negotiators failing to reach a compromise.
Mnuchin, on Friday, pointed to PPP as an area where there was “broad bipartisan agreement.”
Lawmakers want to use the roughly $ 127 billion not spent on the first round of PPP funding to be used to get the hardest-hit small business owners a second forgivable loan.
The House of Representatives’ GOP package, introduced late last month, would limit funding to companies with no more than 300 employees, compared to the cap of 500 workers in March. It would also include an income test, which would limit loans to companies that have lost at least 50 percent of turnover compared to a quarter of a year earlier.
Sen. Ben CardinBenjamin (Ben) Louis CardinCongress sees stricter restrictions on next round of aid to small business First Chamber announces extension of application time for PPP loans to small business 1,700 troops will support Trump ‘Salute to America’ parties July 4: Pentagon MAY (D-Md.), The top Democrat on the Small Business Committee, said talks with Republicans about the final language for the program were in “pretty good shape,” but they did not agree. Cardin notes that Democrats specifically want more funds for loans for disasters for economic damage.
As the deadline for the application window ran out, Republicans in the House of Representatives this week went on to force a vote on a stand-alone PPP plan, in an effort to put Democrats on the record. But that was kicked off by GOP fighting.
“Senator Johnson wanted to submit an amendment to steal money from PPP recipients, even if they showed a profit, which, in my opinion, would completely destroy the program. …. “It would kill the loan, knock out a bench and put that in, so you know with that kind of requirements, there is no point in even having a second round,” Sen said. Marco RubioMarco Antonio RubioThe Campaign Report of the Hill: US officials say Russia, China are trying to sow discord in elections. US intelligence says Russia is trying to “denigrate” Biden from a Republican donor to the House of Representatives (R-Fla.).
“There had to be one, but when a few members insist on it … something that would destroy the program, it’s not even worth it to have that vote,” Rubio said.