VIDEO RELEASE: Shaheen Successfully Leads Extension of PPP, Pushes For Immediate Assistance to Address State and Local Budget Shortfalls
Senator Shaheen delivers remarks on Senate floor on the urgent need to extend the Paycheck Protection Program and addresses other priorities in future COVID-19 relief.
**Shaheen Also Calls for Assistance to Support Nursing Homes Which Are Housing the Most Vulnerable to COVID-19 & Delivers Fierce Defense of the ACA as Republicans Double Down on Efforts to Repeal Health Care Law in the Courts**
(Washington, DC) – Last night on the Senate floor, U.S. Senator Jeanne Shaheen (D-NH) successfully led an effort in the Senate with Senators Ben Cardin (D-MD) and Chris Coons (D-DE) to extend the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP), which expired at midnight, to August 8th. The Senate approved the measure by unanimous consent, and sent the bill to the House of Representatives for consideration. Shaheen also called for the passage of the Prioritized Paycheck Protection Program (P4) Act, legislation she introduced with Coons and Cardin that would allow small businesses to access a second round of PPP loans, particularly those in the restaurant and hospitality industries.
Additionally, Senator Shaheen discussed the urgent need for robust federal assistance to support nursing homes and delivered a fierce defense of the Affordable Care Act (ACA) as Republicans double down on efforts to repeal the health care law in the courts. Yesterday, Senator Shaheen joined Senator Tester (D-MT) and a group of Senators to file a resolution in defense of the ACA and rebuking Republican efforts to strip an estimated 133 million Americans of critical health protections secured by the law as the COVID-19 public health emergency rages on.
In her remarks, Shaheen also highlighted the urgent need to confront the budgetary shortfall impacting states and municipalities due to the economic fallout spurred by the COVID-19 pandemic. Shaheen has long sounded the alarm on the need for federal aid to address the budgetary shortfall impacting New Hampshire and states across the country. Senator Shaheen referenced concerns expressed by Governor Sununu about New Hampshire’s state budget as she, once again, called on Republican leadership to help state and local governments get through this crisis.
Shaheen’s remarks can be viewed here.
“Even today, we heard the Governor of New Hampshire – the Republican Governor Chris Sununu – announce that in New Hampshire our state expects to experience a budget shortfall of nearly $540 million,” said Shaheen on the Senate floor. “That’s about a 20 percent drop in state revenues. That’s going to have a huge impact in New Hampshire, not just on health care, but on so many investments that the state needs to make… everyone in the state, from town administrators to the Republican Governor, all are describing the tough choices they’re going to have to make if federal assistance doesn’t arrive soon.”
During her remarks on the need to extend the PPP, Shaheen – a senior member of the Senate Small Business Committee who had helped negotiate the small business relief programs that were established in the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act – discussed the success programs like PPP have had in helping to keep small businesses afloat, but stressed that more is needed.
Shaheen cited her conversations with Granite State small business owners, who need assistance quickly in order to keep their doors open. “I’ve heard from small businesses like LaBelle Winery, which is a beautiful winery, conference and wedding venue in Southern New Hampshire. It has 100 employees. It’s fighting to survive. Two decades of work that the owners of LaBelle Winery have put in, and yet, all of their events are cancelling for the Summer and Fall. They’ve spent their first round of PPP. They’re operating now at just a fraction of their capacity, and before the pandemic, this was a thriving business with expansion plans for opening an inn and a second restaurant. Now, if they don’t get that second round, they’re in real trouble.”
Shaheen then highlighted the need to pass her P4 Act, which alongside allowing businesses that have already received a PPP loan but are still struggling to apply again, would extend the deadline for applications. Her remarks can be viewed in full here.