11.23.20

SCHUMER: AS THE PANDEMIC RAGES ON, CAPITAL REGION’S 57,000 SMALL BUSINESSES NEED A LIFELIFE NOW MORE THAN EVER; STANDING WITH THE CEO OF FIELD GOODS, SENATOR COMPLETES 22ND ANNUAL 62-COUNTY TOUR OF NEW YORK BY PUSHING FOR COVID RELIEF PACKAGE TO EXTEND “PPP” PROGRAM TO GIVE LOCAL SMALL BIZ OWNERS A SECOND PPP FORGIVABLE LOAN & CONTINUED ASSISTANCE

With A New COVID Wave Emerging In New York, Small Business Owners Need Additional PPP Assistance To Make It Through The Winter

Schumer Pushes Vital Legislation To Provide Economic Relief To Capital Region’s Small Businesses, Extending PPP Into Next Year & Offering New Second Round of Forgivable Assistance To Hardest-Hit Small Businesses

Schumer: PPP Extension & Expansion Is The Lifeboat Upstate Small Biz Needs And Must Be Part Of Any Comprehensive COVID Relief Package To Recover & Rebuild From Health -and Economic- Pandemic

Standing at Field Goods in Greene County, New York, U.S. Senator Charles E. Schumer unveiled the HEROES Small Business Lifeline Act, which includes a new option to receive a second PPP forgivable loan, providing additional relief for New York’s smallest businesses that have been severely impacted by the economic effects of the COVID-19 pandemic. The senator pushed for the legislation to be included in any comprehensive COVID relief package. The senator called for the Senate to pass relief legislation as part of a larger COVID relief package and deliver forgivable support to endangered small businesses and non-profits, ASAP.

”PPP has been a lifeline for Capital Region small businesses struggling to stay afloat during these turbulent times,” said Senator Schumer. “However, as the pandemic drags on and a second wave emerges in New York, we need to do even more for businesses that are hardest-hit. This legislation will resurrect and bring much-needed changes to the PPP to make loans more accessible to the smallest businesses and nonprofits in the Capital Region that are trying to stay afloat and make a second round of relief possible for businesses that need the extra support.”

Schumer explained that this proposed legislation will provide much-needed relief to Capital Region small business owners as new wave of COVID emerges, by extending the PPP loan period into next year and providing the option for a second forgivable PPP loan for eligible small businesses that are in need of additional assistance to survive. Specifically, PPP second loans will allow for businesses to access funds worth 250 percent of monthly payroll costs, up to a maximum of $2 million. Small businesses and non-profits with fewer than 200 employees, sole proprietors, independent contractors, and self-employed borrowers that have experienced revenue loss due to the pandemic will be eligible for this second round of assistance in an effort to get critical federal aid to the most in-need businesses. Set-asides are also included for very small businesses of 10 or fewer employees and for underserved communities. These second PPP loans would be fully forgivable similar to the first PPP loans as long as all requirements are met in the use of funds.

Schumer said that any new, comprehensive COVID relief package must target assistance to hard-hit Capital Region small businesses like Field Goods, and borrowers in historically underserved communities. Citing data from the New York State Department of Labor, Schumer further explained that the private sector job count in the Albany-Schenectady-Troy MSA fell by 38,200 or 10.2 percent, during the 12-month period ending in October 2020. Schumer explained that this data points to a critical need for federal support to revive the region’s economy, including aid to help small businesses weather the crisis and put them on a road to recovery as the lynchpins of our local economies.

The senator was joined today by Michael Waterman, CEO of Field Goods and Donna Williams, Founder of Field Goods. Before the pandemic, Field Goods and its sister company, Hudson Harvest, provided delivery services for fresh Hudson Valley produce, baked goods, and other items, buying about $7 million worth of products a year from 100 farms and vendors in the region. The Hudson Harvest side of their business especially, sold wholesale to restaurants while the Field Goods side sold to individual consumers. When the pandemic hit and restaurants closed, Field Goods and Hudson Harvest were able to keep business alive by applying for PPP and using the funds to completely overhaul their business model, transitioning Hudson Harvest from a wholesale operation selling to restaurants, to selling to retail stores, and Field Goods from delivering to drop-off sites to home deliveries. These major changes in their business model were made possible through the first round of PPP funding they received and Senator Schumer argued that success stories like Field Goods and Hudson Harvest’s made the case for a second round of PPP.

Specifically, the HEROES Small Business Lifeline Act would:

Extend and improve the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) to better serve small businesses.

  • HEROES 2.0 extends PPP through the end of March 2021;
  • Provides a second PPP forgivable loan for the hardest-hit small businesses and nonprofits;
  • Reserves 10 percent of overall funds for very small businesses of 10 employees or fewer, sole proprietors, independent contractors, and the self-employed;
  • Creates a set-aside of 25%, up to $15 billion, of funds for distribution through community lenders like Community Development Financial Institutions, Minority Depository Institutions, microloan funds, and SBA certified development companies to better reach underserved businesses and nonprofits.
  • Expands PPP eligibility to ensure that more critical access hospitals, local newspapers and TV and radio broadcasters, and all nonprofits, regardless of size and type, including 501(c)(6) organizations like local chambers of commerce, can participate;
  • Adds PPE expenses and supplier costs as eligible and forgivable expenses;
  • Simplifies the forgiveness process;
  • Repeals the requirement of deducting an EIDL advance from the PPP forgiveness amount.

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