CLARKSBURG, W.Va. — The Small Business Administration has begun to offer training sessions for their Paycheck Protection and Federal Disaster Recovery loan programs through Microsoft Teams for anyone interested in learning more about these programs.
According to the SBA Mid-Atlantic Regional Administrator Steve Bulger, the training sessions will be hosted on Tuesdays and Thursdays throughout the month of July, but he said they expect to extend the programs throughout August.
While the original deadline for the PPP was June 30, Bulger said that date was extended to Aug. 8 by President Donald Trump on July 5.
Bulger said that PPP still has more than $100 billion left and that a lot of companies did receive loans, and part of the educational seminars that are being hosted by the SBA will cover the forgiveness aspect of the loan.
To call into the webinar, those interested are asked to call 202-765-1264 and use conference ID 402791363#.
During those sessions, SBA officials will answer any questions, and these are being offered at no charge to anyone who calls in, Bulger said, and that in this program, in West Virginia alone, more than 8,000 business have taken advantage of these training seminars.
Currently, small businesses are only able to receive one PPP loan from the SBA, but congress is in session at the moment and is considering allowing companies to apply for additional PPP loans because of the length of time the pandemic has lasted, according to Bulger.
“We know this pandemic is not going away as quickly as everybody had hoped and we’re going to be ready for whatever additional resources we can provide to small businesses as we more forward.”SBA Mid-Atlantic Regional Administrator Steve Bulger
Bulger said that the ability to apply for additional PPP loans are especially of interest to businesses in the hospitality industry because they have been hit very had by the pandemic.
As of the most recent number, nationally $520 billion has been given out to approximately 5 million businesses; in West Virginia, the loan amount is approximately $1.7 billion, but Bulger said he did not have the exact number of businesses in the state that have applied.
With the size of the loans recently, Bulger said that it shows the loan amounts are smaller which shows that smaller businesses have been applying for and receiving the loans.
“That’s what people really want, they don’t want just the bigger companies to get it. We wanted — the president, congress, the American people — wanted the smallest companies out there to take advantage because they’re hard hit too, and they don’t have the reserves to weather the storm like bigger companies do.”SBA Mid-Atlantic Regional Administrator Steve Bulger
Bulger said that more non-profits — especially faith-based organizations — have taken advantage of PPP since the last deadline of June 30, and more than $13 billion has gone to non-profits of all different types.
“Normally, SBA does not lend money to non-profits or faith-based organizations but this is a very special circumstance and Congress and the president made sure that the program was eligible to those non-profits because they need the help, too.”SBA Mid-Atlantic Regional Administrator Steve Bulger
With the Aug. 8 deadline extension, Bulger said that about $130 billion was in the program at the June 30 cut off before the extension, and with loans going out and surge in interest in the PPP programs, there is still more than $100 billion left in the account.
Bulger said that any money left over in the program as of the Aug. 8 deadline will be used as a basis for the next round of funding through either a new program decided by Congress or as an extension of the PPP.
“SBA is going to be here for the long term. I know there’s a lot of short-term pressure right now on small businesses because of the shutdown, but once things do start opening up again, our regular SBA programs with lending with training and mentoring and how to get in to do government contracting. All those programs will be important to get businesses back up to where they were, so we stand ready to help. Our West Virginia district office team is really professional and they can really bring a lot to the table to help our small businesses — so please don’t hesitate to reach out to us.”SBA Mid-Atlantic Regional Administrator Steve Bulger