Members of the Mississippi Congressional Delegation and other leaders in the state have offered their thoughts on the potential for more funding in the Paycheck Protection Program that the SBA and National Federation of Independent Business (NFIB) says is exhausted.
As of Tuesday, there had been 14,209 small business loans applied for in Mississippi. These totaled $1,921,783,598 in approved loans.
In the legislation passed by Congress $369 billion was appropriated initially for the program. By Friday April 17th, 20,748 loans with the SBA had been approved at $2.5 million in Mississippi, totaling $247.5 billion across the nations.
According to the SBA there are 250,000 registered small businesses in Mississippi, a far cry from the just over 14,000 that have been approved for loans.
Republicans are looking to add another $251 billion into the program without making any changes to the bill.
Senator Cindy Hyde-Smith says Democrats must stop blocking new funding for the PPP.
Democrats must stop blocking new #PaycheckProtectionProgram funding. MS small businesses should still apply with @SBAgov and know that I’ll push for resources to support this #COVID19 relief program. Visit https://t.co/sz1GrZ8B1F COVID-19 page for more info. pic.twitter.com/mY3iOEKdFc
— U.S. Senator Cindy Hyde-Smith (@SenHydeSmith) April 15, 2020
Congressman Michael Guest said in a tweet that House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer “are putting the future of thousands of small businesses at risk by obstructing PPP funds.”
.@SpeakerPelosi & @SenSchumer are putting the future of thousands of small businesses at risk by obstructing funds needed to keep these businesses afloat. Democrats need to stop blocking these funds. America needs its small businesses.
— Congressman Michael Guest (@RepMichaelGuest) April 16, 2020
Congressman Steven Palazzo running out of money in the PPP did not have to happen, adding, “Democrats needlessly snubbed America’s small businesses by choosing to block additional funding for the PPP.”
The #PaycheckProtectionProgram is out of money. This didn't have to happen.
Dems needlessly snubbed America's small businesses by choosing to block additional funding for the PPP.
America's small businesses are counting on Congress to do the right thing & authorize more funds. pic.twitter.com/EbCHNREvwa
— Cong. Steven Palazzo (@CongPalazzo) April 16, 2020
Democrats have offered a proposal of $500 billion. This would include $60 billion for lenders serving small businesses, $150 billion for individual states, $100 billion for hospitals and another 15 percent for food stamps.
Congressman Bennie Thompson says Democrats are fighting for small businesses but the PPP must include fixes.
“I will support more funding when it includes assurances that small and minority businesses won’t have to compete against big businesses for help,” Congressman Thompson said in a statement sent to Y’all Politics on Thursday.
-More disaster loans
-Support for rural and underserved communities
-Access to SBA programs for farmers
Any #COVID19 relief bill must include these fixes if we want to help small businesses weather this crisis. pic.twitter.com/UYwnv2F78d
— Bennie G. Thompson (@BennieGThompson) April 15, 2020
NFIB State Director Dawn Starns said, “Small businesses account for 99.3% of all employers in Mississippi, but only a tiny fraction of them have received this funding. Without it, they won’t be able to pay their employees, and some might not be able to reopen. Mississippi cannot afford for that to happen.”
The NFIB penned letters to congressional leaders, urging them to immediately provide further appropriations to the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP), and to the Small Business Administration, strongly encouraging them to address significant funding and communication issues related to the Economic Injury Disaster Loan (EIDL) program.
Governor Tate Reeves backed more funding for the PPP in his Wednesday press conference, saying Speaker Pelosi and Congressional Democrats should do their jobs.
Democrat Senate candidate Mike Espy retweeted a Washington Post article on the rising unemployment in the nation, saying, “Our state deserves better leadership in Washington, especially during a crisis like this.” However, he has not taken a position publically or provided a statement on if he supports additional funding for the PPP to aid small businesses.
In the last three weeks alone, 100,000 Mississippians filed for unemployment insurance. That’s a 9000% increase in unemployment claims.
Our state deserves better leadership in Washington, especially during a crisis like this. https://t.co/D6wMQUKdBB
— Mike Espy (@MikeEspyMS) April 16, 2020