As Pennsylvania begins to open up following the relaxing of lock-down orders, we had the opportunity to sit down with U.S. Representative Chrissy Houlahan. We discuss how the federal government has been supporting small businesses and how local business owners and leaders can engage with Rep. Houlahan and her office, to get assistance and to drive legislation.
How is the Federal government supporting small and mid-size businesses?
- “We are all trying to build a good business – hard in the best of times.”
- The Federal Government has done a number of things:
- Paycheck Protection Program (PPP), to enable small and medium businesses to keep staff on payroll
- Economic Injury Disaster Loan Emergency Advance Program (EIDL)
- Paycheck Protection Flexibility Act – fixes some issues with PPP
- Extends timeline for using the loan or grant funding
- Provides for a better split on what money that has to be used for payroll, versus for other businesses expenses
- Loan period has been extended to 5-years (from 2)
- Business in Chester County and Berks County also have different loan and grant programs
- As of the recording of this show, there is $100 billion still available in the above programs
How can businesses re-open safely?
- Follow the locally suggested practices for social distancing, wearing of masks, and other guidelines for limiting the risk of spreading COVD-19
- Be flexible and innovative in exploring ways to sustain businesses
How can business owners and leaders get involved?
- There are a number of task forces working on preparing for the reopening of business
- There is a task force in Rep. Houlahan’s office for small businesses; it’s email address is firstname.lastname@example.org
- The task force can provide both individualized assistance, but also access to resources and valuable content
- The feedback of local business owners is the way that the Federal government drives new legislation