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Republicans want to send second round of PPP loans to hard-hit small businesses

By on March 23, 2021 0

The main authors of the popular small business lending initiative known as the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) want the next round of loans to focus on small businesses that have suffered heavy losses due to the coronavirus pandemic.

Senate Small Business Committee Chairman Marco Rubio (R-Fla.) and Sen. Susan Collins (R-Maine) released their plan Monday afternoon as part of a broader rollout of GOP proposals for the next phase of coronavirus relief legislation.

The plan would allow the hardest-hit small business owners to receive a second PPP forgivable loan.

Rubio and Collins say another round of PPP loans should be limited to businesses with no more than 300 employees, down from the 500-worker limit originally set in the third coronavirus stimulus bill passed in march.

The reform plan will also include an income test, limiting loans to companies that have lost at least 50% of their income compared to the previous year’s quarter.

It would also expand the list of expenses for which PPP loans would be forgiven to include investments to protect employees and customers such as masks, plexiglass screens and improved H-VAC climate systems.

“We are now starting to see that as PPP funds run out, some companies are once again having to deal with the possibility of having to lay off some of their workers. And that’s why it’s time for a second round of PPP aid,” Rubio told the Senate on Monday, unveiling the plan.

Part of the PPP loans will be reserved for companies with 10 employees or less.

“Some of these funds will be set aside for employers who have ten or fewer employees to make sure the money doesn’t run out without this group of small businesses getting the help they need,” he said. Rubio.

Collins, who is up for re-election in November, said the program had been essential for her home country’s economy.

“Over 76% of small businesses in Maine reported receiving a PPP loan. An estimated 76% of Maine’s jobs have been supported by this critically important program,” Collins told the Senate Monday afternoon.

Collins also revealed some of the details of the program during a Friday radio appearance.

“It would give another round of Paycheck Protection Program forgivable loans to our small employers who keep employees paid, retain them, call them back, or keep sending them paychecks,” Collins said when asked. she unveiled her plan Friday on Maine radio.

Collins noted that the eight-week Paycheck Protection Program set up by the CARES Act has expired.

She says the new GOP proposal “would allow for a second PPP loan for the hardest-hit businesses.”

“They would have to have less than 300 employees, they couldn’t be publicly traded, and they would have to show they had a 50% drop in revenue from the same quarter last year,” she said. declared.

“I can tell you, having spoken to countless restaurateurs and operators of bed and breakfasts, inns and hotels, that many of them will easily reach that threshold,” she said.

Collins said small business owners said the first round of PPP loans helped save their businesses, but they were still under threat.

“There are businesses that need a second loan to survive,” she said.

Rubio and Collins also offer special, longer-term, low-interest loans for businesses in low-income neighborhoods.