Cooper Requests Guidance on Small Business Administration Loans
NASHVILLE – U.S. Rep. Jim Cooper (TN-05) sent a letter to the U.S. Department of the Treasury and U.S. Small Business Administration asking for more guidance from the Administration.
The CARES Act, which was signed into law last week, established a new program through the Small Business Administration called the Paycheck Protection Program for businesses affected by the Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic. This provides 100% guaranteed, low interest, no fee loans of up to $10 million with repayment deferred for at least six months and will forgive up to 100% of the loan if the borrower has retained the same number of employees as when they received the loan. Small businesses (up to 500 employees), nonprofits, independent contractors, and the self-employed are eligible. This includes churches but only to cover payroll costs of an associated business, like a thrift store.
So far, little to no guidance has been issued to SBA lenders from the U.S. Department of Treasury or U.S. Small Business Administration, so businesses are having difficulty accessing funding from lenders who are unclear how to proceed with the loans. A story ran in the The Washington Post earlier this week.
“This is everyone’s worst nightmare about government—it doesn’t work when you need it the most,” Rep. Cooper said. “Congress did its job; now the Administration should follow.”