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Shaheen Announces Nearly $2.5 billion in Assistance Has Been Approved for More Than 20,000 NH Businesses Through Relief Program

(Washington, DC) – U.S. Senator Jeanne Shaheen (D-NH), a senior member of the Senate Committee on Small Business and Entrepreneurship, announced today that the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) has approved $2,579,751,242 in loans for 20,511 New Hampshire small businesses through the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) through May 1. The PPP was created through the Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security (CARES) Act, of which Shaheen was a lead negotiator. In the most recent coronavirus response legislation, Shaheen insisted that the PPP program be replenished to ensure New Hampshire businesses would have continued access to critical aid.

“Help can’t come fast enough to New Hampshire small businesses and their workers,” said Senator Shaheen. “This program is providing a lifeline to many of our small businesses but much work remains to ensure that this relief is delivered to the many other New Hampshire businesses that are hurting. Unfortunately, the Trump administration has given funding to large businesses and corporations who have gamed the system, which was not the intent of the law. The Trump administration must correct persistent problems in the implementation of this program and there needs to be stringent oversight from Congress.”

The SBA had approved nearly $2,006,858,477 in loans for more than 11,582 New Hampshire small businesses prior to funds for the program being exhausted on April 16. Since the latest coronavirus response legislation was passed by Congress and signed into law, providing $310 billion for the PPP, the program has approved $572,892,765 in loans for 8,929 New Hampshire small businesses through May 1.

Senator Shaheen has called for oversight hearings on the implementation of small business relief programs in the CARES Act, as many small businesses continue to experience difficulties accessing the programs. She has also called for changes that would allow for better access for smaller businesses to access the program, particularly businesses that don’t have a relationship with big banks, as well as additional funding for health care providers. Senator Shaheen continues to call for other changes to the PPP program to help New Hampshire’s small businesses, including extending key deadlines, and is urging that these fixes be included in future COVID-19 response legislation.