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Joint Letter: Making the Paycheck Protection Program Work for Underserved Small Businesses

May 21, 2020
Consumer Finance
Letters to Congress

Nearly forty consumer and civil rights organizations call on the Trump Administration and the Congress to work together and take the following steps to ensure access to the Paycheck Protection Program for underserved businesses and sole proprietors.

  • Set aside $10 billion for use ONLY by Community Development Financial Institutions (CDFIs) and Minority Depository Institutions (MDIs), to make this funding available to underserved businesses.
  • Extend the deadline for processing PPP loans until December 31, 2020.
  • For the purposes of granting forgiveness of PPP loans, extend the period during which eligible expenses can be incurred from 8 weeks to 24 weeks and provide blanket forgiveness with safe harbor treatment for any loan under $25,000 based on a certification from the business owner.
  • Resources must be made available to address the higher cost of reaching and serving underserved borrowers, either in the form of a minimum fee of $2,500 or a separate entrepreneurial assistance grant for PPP loans under $50,000.
  • Allow the amounts paid by a business to 1099 contractors to be included, like payroll, in the calculation for determining the PPP loan and the provisions for forgiveness, at the discretion of the business owner.
  • Allow the Treasury Department to utilize any funds appropriated for PPP that are unexpended after the program sunsets, including dollars returned to the Treasury, to be made available to the Treasury Department’s CDFI Fund to support lending to underserved and minority businesses.

Download the full letter.