April 05, 2020

As Small Business Assistance Program Launches, NH Delegation Calls for Trump Administration to Issue Better Guidance to Lending Institutions

**SHAHEEN, HASSAN, KUSTER, PAPPAS: “As this program is rolled out, the Administration must stand ready to anticipate, adjust and resolve potential problems in order to ensure efficient and effective utilization of this important loan program.”**

(Washington, DC)—U.S. Senator Jeanne Shaheen (D-NH), a senior member of the Senate Small Business Committee and a lead negotiator of the small business assistance provisions in the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act, U.S. Senator Maggie Hassan (D-NH) and U.S. Representatives Annie Kuster (NH-02) and Chris Pappas (NH-01) sent the following letter to the Small Business Administration Administrator Jovita Carranza and Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin urging their respective agencies to provide better guidance to lending institutions so that they can issue loans through the newly-enacted Paycheck Protection Program. This new program launched on Friday and was established through the CARES Act to help small businesses keep employees on payroll and stay financially afloat through the COVID-19 crisis.

 

The New Hampshire Delegation’s letter reads in part, “Unfortunately, several lenders have delayed their participation in the Paycheck Protection Program, expressing concern that the Administration has not provided the necessary guidance on how this program will be administered. The desired impact of this program – to help small businesses weather this current public health and economic emergency – must not be hindered as potential borrowers complete an application only to have it denied or remain in processing while a lender waits for additional guidance.”

 

Their letter continues, “Banks, credit unions and other lenders require clarity on their expectations for supporting Paycheck Protection Program loans to ensure that resources are provided to small businesses as quickly as possible. This includes information on timing of loan processing and disbursement, flexibility on potential technical errors or mistakes on paperwork, the likelihood of potential delays on underwriting and processing and the extent to which loans are truly guaranteed. As this program is rolled out, the Administration must stand ready to anticipate, adjust and resolve potential problems in order to ensure efficient and effective utilization of this important loan program.”

 

The letter can be read in full here.

 

The nearly $350 billion Paycheck Protection Program provides eight weeks of cash-flow assistance to small businesses through 100 percent federally guaranteed loans to employers who maintain their payroll during this emergency. If employers maintain their payroll, the loans are forgiven, which would help workers to remain employed and affected small businesses and our economy to quickly snap-back after the COVID-19 crisis. 

 

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