While PPP Oversight Efforts Stall in the Senate, Small Business Group Calls on the SBA to Release PPP Demographic Data
Washington, DC – Today, John Arensmeyer, Founder and CEO at Small Business Majority, issued the following statement after the Transparency and Oversight of COVID-19 Small Business Assistance Act, which would require the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) to provide Congress and the public with timely, detailed data on the agency’s COVID-19 small business relief programs, was blocked from advancing on the U.S Senate floor.
“For the past month questions of equity have plagued the Payroll Protection Program (PPP). First, banks favored larger firms with previous banking relationships, then over a billion dollars intended for small businesses ended in the hands of 300 publicly traded companies, and now reports indicate that certain minority populations are not being approved for PPP at the same rate as other applicants.
Today, however, the Senate had a chance to adjust course and set PPP on the path to equity by voting to advance legislation to require the SBA to provide a breakdown of where funding was allocated by geography, demographics and industry. Instead, Republican Senators blocked the measure. While this is a setback for women and minority entrepreneurs, we call on the SBA to do the right thing and move forward with releasing this important information on a rolling basis—whether it is compelled by Congress or not. For America’s small business community to have a shot at a full recovery, funding must be distributed equitably,” said Arensmeyer.
Despite representing the fastest growing populations of business owners, women and minority entrepreneurs are approved for small business lending at a significantly lower rate. In fact, women-owned businesses receive just 4.4% of all conventional small business loans and minority-owned firms received a scant 5.5%. Additionally, people of color are three times more likely to get denied a loan than non-minority businesses.
About Small Business Majority
Small Business Majority was founded and is run by small business owners to ensure America’s entrepreneurs are a key part of a thriving and inclusive economy. We actively engage our network of more than 58,000 small business owners in support of public policy solutions and deliver information and resources to entrepreneurs that promote small business growth. Our extensive scientific polling, focus groups and economic research help us educate and inform policymakers, the media and other stakeholders about key issues impacting small businesses and freelancers. Learn more about us on our website and follow us on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram.