With PPP Funds Mostly Exhausted, Congress Must Make More Small Business Grants Available
Statement from John Arensmeyer, Founder & CEO of Small Business Majority, on what lawmakers should do next to help more small businesses access capital as funding available through the Paycheck Protection Program runs out
“Although Congress intended the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) to last through May 31, most of the funding has been exhausted except for a small amount allocated as a set aside for community financial institutions. While PPP has been a critical short-term lifeline for many businesses, the program was always fundamentally flawed as it was based on an unequal traditional banking system. At the same time, we know small businesses, particularly those owned by women, entrepreneurs of color and immigrants, are still struggling one year into the pandemic. They desperately need additional relief. This is why we are calling on Congress to consider other assistance options for vulnerable businesses that have been left behind by PPP.
We must ensure that existing programs like the Shuttered Venues Operators Grant, the Restaurant Revitalization Fund and other federal relief funds are distributed quickly and efficiently to reach the hardest-hit small businesses, particularly those in underserved areas. What’s more, we're hearing from small business owners who are calling for forgiveness of EIDL loans under $150,000, which is critical for those who were left behind by PPP and found greater success through the EIDL program. Providing this forgiveness will also provide parity with PPP.
And, we need additional grant programs for other hard-hit small businesses that haven’t received any prioritized grant or loan relief thus far, like those in the personal care industry, travel, event planning, and others.
There is no shortage of solutions that Congress can enact to further aid struggling small businesses, only a shortage of time. Policymakers must continue to put small businesses front and center in relief efforts before more Main Street businesses close their doors for good.”
About Small Business Majority
Small Business Majority is a national small business organization that empowers America's diverse entrepreneurs to build a thriving and equitable economy. We engage our network of more than 85,000 small businesses and 1,000 business and community organizations to advocate for public policy solutions and deliver resources to entrepreneurs that promote equitable small business growth. Our deep connections with the small business community along with our scientific research enable us to educate the public about key issues impacting America’s entrepreneurs, with a special focus on advancing the smallest businesses and those facing systemic inequalities. Learn more about us on our website and follow us on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram.