A relief program that paved a critical path for small businesses during the coronavirus pandemic is responsible for a “majority” of jobs created since May, according to Small Business Administration Administrator Jovita Carranza.
The $ 670 billion Paycheck Control Protection program, created when Congress passed the CARES Act in late March, officially closed to new applicants on Saturday.
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“I would say most of the 9.3 million jobs that are being held are attributed to small businesses,”; Carranza said in an interview with FOX Business’ Edward Lawrence.
Since the program launched in early April, more than 5.2 million loans worth about $ 525 billion have been disbursed, according to Carranza. The program has helped save about 51 million jobs.
“This Pay Protection Program kept the small business economy afloat,” Carranza said. “He also protected the wages of employers and employees. The Paycheck Defense program was essential to sustaining and mobilizing our national economy.”
There is about $ 135 billion left in the fund.
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As Democratic leaders and White House officials struggle to negotiate the next round of emergency aid, some lawmakers are debating what to do with the remaining PPP money amid a resurgence in COVID-19 cases and a new round of closures. businesses that are threatening to slow down – – or vice versa – the gradual recovery of the economy.
Under a $ 1 trillion stimulus proposal unveiled by Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell last week, the money would be revalued for more targeted aid to smaller businesses with stronger shocks, which would be eligible to apply. for a second loan for PPP.
Businesses that have seen their revenue decline by 50% or more in the first or second quarter of this year (compared to last year) may dive into PPP for a second loan.
Assistance would be limited to businesses with no more than 300 employees, from the original limit of 500 employees, set out in the CARES Act. A portion of the money would be allocated to businesses with less than 10 employees.
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The proposal, drafted by Senator Marco Rubio, R-Fla., And Sen. Susan Collins, R-Maine, would also ease some of the restrictions on taxpayer-funded money. For example, businesses would be allowed to use credit to purchase personal protective equipment for workers, investments that senators said are needed to ensure owners can run their businesses safely during the pandemic.
Rubio and Collins have urged Congress to act unanimously on the extension of the PPP as talks on a broader stimulus bill drag on together.
“I believe the president and cabinet are working diligently to provide another bailout, an urgent financial bailout for small businesses,” Carranza said.
There is a fear that once PPP money is diluted, small businesses may see a wave of holidays: According to a recent study released by the National Federation of Independent Businesses, 14% of companies that received PPP assistance are considering quitting employees, after impoverishing money. At least 70,000 of these businesses plan to lay off at least 10 workers.
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