On April 21, the U.S. Senate passed a bipartisan agreement that will provide $321 billion in additional funding for the Paycheck Protection Program. House members have been advised to return to Washington, D.C., for an April 23 vote on the interim Coronavirus relief package, and the president has stated he will sign the bill into law once passed. The $484 billion deal also includes $60 billion for the Economic Injury Disaster Loan program, $75 billion for the nation’s hospitals, $25 billion for COVID-19 testing and $11 billion in PPP administrative costs. Of that testing money, $11 billion will go to states.
The concern now is how long these new funds will last. With the original $349 billion expended in just 14 days, lawmakers and economic experts believe that these new funds could expire even faster-as early as next week-due to implementation of a swifter approval process since the roll-out, more approved lenders and thousands of applications at the ready. While not all small businesses are in need of assistance at this time, the country has approximately 30 million small businesses. The U.S. Small Business Administration has approved only 1.6 million PPP loans, and it is unclear how many businesses have applied.