Biden announces reform in PPP eligibility for people with prior convictions

The White House made plans to reform the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) public on Monday, February 22. The plan targets a specific part of the PPP aimed at restricting small businesses whose owners held prior felony convictions from obtaining a PPP loan. The Small Business Administration (SBA) created the restriction with an interim court ruling in early 2020.

The change in restrictions allows a greater number of business to benefit from the program. The SBA offers assistance to small businesses to keep up with payroll, utilities, and other business expenses.

President Biden spoke about the challenges faced my small business, particularly those from minority communities, “It’s hurting black, Latino, and Asian American communities the hardest. Walk down any Main Street and you see it: empty storefronts, goodbye signs hanging in the windows. Maybe it’s the pizza place you used to take your family to dinner, or the hardware store that always had the tool you needed.”

The President gave specifics on the upcoming changes, “The Small Business Administration is going to establish a 14-day exclusive PPP loan application period for businesses and nonprofits with fewer than 20 employees. People can – can go out and find how to get a hold of these – these loans. People can out more at SBA.gov.”

According to SBA.gov, the SBA is offering PPP loans to “businesses with 20 or less employees and sole proprietors only from Wednesday, February 24 through Wednesday, March 2021.”

The commitment to increase equability also eases restrictions on small business owners who have failed to make student loan payments and made the process easier for non-citizen business owners. These changes have not taken effect yet but are currently being implemented by the SBA.

The increased inclusiveness and equability criteria for the Paycheck Protection Program come alongside the United States crossing 500,000 deaths from COVID-19. Many small businesses are nearing a year without operation and are facing permanent closure. The Biden Administration’s effort come as a step towards recovery but more state initiatives will be needed to support small businesses.

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