If the goal of the latest round of Paycheck Protection Program loans was to get more help to small businesses, it appears to be working.
According to statistics released by the U.S. Small Business Administration, the share of PPP loans going to small businesses is up some 60%, with other similar statistics also trending up.
In a release issued Monday, SBA officials said the Biden administration is taking steps to “further promote equitable relief for America’s mom-and-pop businesses.”
The latest round of Paycheck Protection Program funding opened one month ago and officials say the administration has “succeeded in making major improvements” to the program’s implementation:
- For businesses with fewer than 10 employees, the share of fuding is up nearly 60%.
- For businesses in rural communities, the share of funding is up nearly 30%.
- The share of funding distributed through Community Development Financial Institutions and Minority Depository Institutions is up more than 40%.
“The SBA is a frontline agency working to create an inclusive economy, focused on reaching women-owned, minority-owned, low- and moderate-income, rural, and other underserved communities in meaningful ways,” said SBA Senior Advisor Michael Roth. “While reported data illustrates we have made real strides in ensuring these funds are reaching underserved communities, we believe we can still do better.
“The important policy changes we are announcing further ensure inclusivity and integrity by increasing access and much-needed aid to Main Street businesses that anchor our neighborhoods and help families build wealth,” Roth added.
Officials said steps taken by the administration “demonstrate the commitment to racial and gender equity, reaching low and moderate-income, rural, urban, and other underserved areas.”
The SBA will:
- Establish a 14-day, exclusive PPP loan application period for businesses and nonprofits with fewer than 20 employees.
- Allow sole proprietors, independent contractors, and self-employed individuals to receive more financial support by revising the PPP’s funding formula for these categories of applicants.
- Eliminate an exclusionary restriction on PPP access for small business owners with prior non-fraud felony convictions, consistent with a bipartisan congressional proposal.
- Eliminate PPP access restrictions on small business owners who have struggled to make federal student loan payments by eliminating federal student loan debt delinquency and default as disqualifiers to participating in the PPP.
- Ensure access for non-citizen small business owners who are lawful U.S. residents by clarifying that they may use Individual Taxpayer Identification Number (ITIN) to apply for the PPP.
The 14-day exclusivity period starts at 9 a.m. Wednesday, while the other four changes will be implemented by the first week of March. The SBA is working on the program changes and will communicate details throughout this week.
Officials said these actions will “help to lay the foundation for a robust and equitable recovery for small businesses across the country.”
According to the SBA, small businesses employ nearly half of the American workforce; they create 2-out-of-3 net new private-sector jobs; they reinvest 68% of revenues to build and sustain communities.
Borrowers can apply for the Paycheck Protection Program by downloading the First Draw PPP loan application or Second Draw PPP loan application and working with a participating PPP lender through the SBA Lender Match tool. Updated PPP information, including forms, guidance, and resources is available at www.sba.gov/ppp and www.treasury.gov/cares.