Washington, DC – Energy and Commerce Committee Republican Leader Greg Walden (R-OR) urges House and Senate colleagues to pass funding to replenish the Paycheck Protection Program in an interview with Melanie Zanona for POLITICO.
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“I think the real issue is where’s the need, and that’s what we need to fill first and most. The need right now is with the PPP, Paycheck Protection Program. That’s where the 7A loan fund will literally go dry.
“Now we know in CARES, we put $100 billion in there for hospitals, $150 billion in for state and local governments, and I believe $15 billion for SNAP. All of those accounts are still full. Treasury hopes to have the information out to state and local governments on how to disperse that money in a week or so. The funding for hospitals – CMS just announced the first $30 billion tranche and how they’re going to allocate that. That means there’s still $70 billion left in that account. Same with the food stamp account. So those aren’t in an urgent situation, running out of money, needing more money.
“We know as a fact that the PPP Program is in that urgent situation. You can see the trendlines, and we should take care of the emergency now. There are other times to argue if we have other programs that may need more funding later, but they don’t need it now. PPP needs it now, that’s why we should come together in a bipartisan way and not delay it.
“Otherwise we’re going to have all these small businesses that are hanging on by their fingernails now, who have gone to their banks or their credit unions, done all the paperwork, and it turns out they were maybe 10 minutes late or an hour late and the fund’s dry. Now what do you do? That’s not what we want. That’s not going to save jobs. That’s not going to save small businesses. It’s certainly not going to give the economy the shot it needs when we finally get out of this.”