The Senate has postponed a bipartisan proposal to extend the small business paycheck protection program and other changes to the initiative before setting off for a week-long hiatus on Thursday.
A bill from Senator
The measure would also allow borrowers to use proceeds on personal protective equipment and ensure that lenders are not held liable for the certification and documentation that borrowers present during the loan process.
Some senators unanimously asked for quick approval on Thursday. It was not immediately clear whether the Senate would approve the measure during a pro forma session on recess or wait for members to return to Washington in June.
Timing matters as the first companies to get credit after the PPP program opened on April 3 will see the eight-week lending deadline expire late next week and early June.
Republicans and Democrats alike have heard from business owners concerned about running out of money to pay their employees.
“We want most of the money to go to the workers,” Mnuchin said Thursday at an online event from The hill Newspaper. “We believe the 75% matched exactly how the program was designed.”
The Paycheck Protection Program, at the heart of the $ 2.2 trillion aid package passed by Congress in March, enables loans of up to $ 10 million that can be waived if a company does within eight weeks on payroll and certain other expenses such as rent.
The idea was to help companies retain workers while they were closed during stay-at-home orders and be ready to reopen after the bans were lifted. However, restaurants and other small businesses have indicated that they will need more time to spend the funds as they will not reopen or be fully operational after eight weeks.
“We are in the 10th week of the pandemic and I think it will be some time before our restaurants and our owners are back up to capacity and pre-Covid traffic.”
The $ 3 trillion Democratic bailout package passed by the House of Representatives last week and rejected by Republicans would extend the lending deadline to 24 weeks.
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