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Shaheen Calls for Senate to Swiftly Pass House-Approved, Bipartisan Legislation to Extend PPP Deadline as Cutoff Looms

**The bipartisan bill is the House companion to legislation Shaheen leads in the Senate to give small businesses an additional two months to access the PPP**

**Shaheen also participated in an SBC hearing on the Paycheck Protection Program this afternoon, where she called for the extension of the program**

(Washington, DC) – Today, U.S. Senator Jeanne Shaheen (D-NH), a senior member of the Senate Small Business and Entrepreneurship Committee (SBC), issued the following statement calling for the Senate to swiftly pass House-approved legislation that would extend the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) application deadline for another two months to May 31, 2021. The bill passed the House Tuesday evening by an overwhelmingly bipartisan vote of 415-3. Shaheen is a lead of identical, companion legislation in the Senate – the PPP Extension Act of 2021 – with Senators Susan Collins (R-ME) and Ben Cardin (D-MD) in the Senate.  Without an extension, the application deadline expires on March 31, 2021.

The Paycheck Protection Program has served as a lifeline for small businesses in New Hampshire and across the country that are struggling to stay afloat amid this economic crisis and are at risk of permanently closing their doors,” said Senator Shaheen. “Vulnerable small businesses are still hurting and need help now to pay their bills and keep workers on payroll, which is why it is incumbent that the Senate pass my bipartisan legislation with Senators Collins and Cardin that will extend the deadline for the Paycheck Protection Program. We must act now – there’s no time to waste.”

Yesterday, Shaheen also questioned financial experts and a leader of a nonprofit organization during an SBC hearing on the performance, impact and future of the PPP. Shaheen is an author of the program, which became law as part of the CARES Act last year and has served as a lifeline for thousands of small businesses throughout New Hampshire. During the hearing, Shaheen questioned witnesses on the importance of extending the deadline for PPP loans, ensuring small businesses have access to clear guidance needed to utilize new relief programs included in the American Rescue Plan such as the Shuttered Venue Operators Grant (SVOG) program and the Restaurant Revitalization Fund and the difference expanding PPP eligibility will have for 501c nonprofit organizations like the YMCA, which play crucial roles in the communities they serve.

Watch Senator Shaheen’s questioning in full here.

Shaheen has worked to provide small businesses with the resources they need to weather and recover from the economic impact of the COVID-19 pandemic. She helped lead discussions on provisions in the Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security (CARES) Act that was signed into law last March to assist small businesses and established the Paycheck Protection Program and expanded the Economic Injury Disaster Loan Program in the CARES Act. Both of these programs have been lifelines for businesses throughout New Hampshire and the country.  To date, over 34,000 New Hampshire small businesses and non-profits have received over $3.4 billion in PPP assistance.