On Tuesday, March 16, the House of Representatives passed the “PPP Extension Act of 2021” by a bipartisan vote of 415-3. This legislation, introduced by Representatives Bourdeaux (D-GA), Kim (R-CA), Velazquez (D-NY) and Luetkemeyer (R-MO), extends the deadline to apply for a PPP loan through May 31, 2021. It also gives SBA lenders an additional 30 days (through June 30) to process those applications. The current deadline to apply is March 31. The bill now goes to the Senate, where companion legislation has been introduced. NAR sent support letters to both the House and Senate for these bills, thanking the cosponsors for introducing the legislation.
Additionally, the Senate Small Business Committee held a hearing on Wednesday, March 17, “The Paycheck Protection Program: Performance, Impact, and Next Steps.” NAR provided a letter to the Committee for the hearing, expressing support for the program. PPP has been a lifeline for many small businesses, independent contractors, and sole proprietors, and self-employed individuals since the beginning of this pandemic. $284.5 billion was appropriated to the program in the FY 2021 appropriations act passed in December 2020, and an additional $7.25 billion in funding from the American Rescue Plan. It is estimated that over $110 billion in appropriated funds is still available in the program. At this crucial point in the pandemic – when many small businesses are mere weeks away from being able to function more normally – it is important that Congress not cut-off this aid program which could help many cross that finish line.