The federal government’s small business fund re-opened on Monday, offering businesses a second shot at forgivable “Paycheck Protection Program” funds.
Last week, Congress approved $310-billion for the program, which exhausted nearly $350-billion in the weeks before.
“Friday afternoon I heard from my bank and by end of day Friday I actually had the funds in my bank,” said small business owner Valeria Lewis-Gunn.
Lewis-Gunn was among those whose applications from the first round was waiting in the cue and was quickly approved. Industry experts believe businesses who missed out the first time have a better than decent shot of being approved in the second wave of relief but if you are just now starting an application, your odds of success are likely greatly reduced.
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“There’s going to be a lot of people left out and I’m optimistic guy but it is going to require further action by congress,” SMU Proffesor John Terry said.
Terry, SMU’s Cox Entrepreneurship Professor, believes it will likely take in the neighborhood of $400-billion more to help all American small businesses in need. Terry said the banks have become more efficient at processing PPP loans in recent weeks and recommends those who are just starting an application consider credit unions and community banks, which received $60-billion in earmarked PPP funding.
On Monday, the Small Business Administration told NBC 5 it was also taking steps to insure the funds were distributed fairly by putting an hourly cap on the number of PPP applications each lender can file.
“You need to get in line, I would encourage you to do it,” Terry said, in reference to any small business who have yet to file.
As for Lewis-Gunn, she is thankful to finally receive help but said many other small businesses in her community are still waiting.
“I feel like on a ground level if something isn’t done you are going to have more mom and pop businesses going out,” she said.