LaHood Introduces Bill to Provide
Flexibility for Businesses in Paycheck Protection Program
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[August 03, 2020]
U.S. Representatives Darin LaHood (R-IL),
Anthony Gonzalez (R-OH), Dave Joyce R-OH), Brad Wenstrup (R-OH), and
Stephanie Murphy (D-FL) today introduced legislation to help small
businesses, especially ones that are unable to fully reopen in the
coming weeks, utilize Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) loans
without sacrificing loan forgiveness.
The Promoting Flexibility for Small Business
Owners Act provides restaurants, retailers, and other similar
businesses with more time to meet the requirements to receive full
forgiveness of their PPP loan.
The Paycheck Protection Program created under the CARES Act provides
American small businesses with important access to forgivable loans
for the purposes of paying employees’ wages, rent, and utilities.
However, under current law, timeline requirements – like the
eight-week limit to spend the loan and the June 30th deadline for
rehiring employees – will severely limit businesses like restaurants
and retailers, who are unable to fully reopen due to state
government restrictions, from fully taking advantage of these loans.
The Promoting Flexibility for Small Business Owners Act addresses
these problems by giving businesses more time to rehire workers and
providing an additional four weeks of payments that can be forgiven.
“Main Street businesses and their employees are the lifeblood of
central and west-central Illinois, and the Paycheck Protection
Program has provided a lifeline to many during the COVID—19
pandemic,” said Congressman LaHood. “As states like Illinois extend
forced business closures, it’s important that small businesses have
the flexibility they need to still make full use of this program.
Our bill better aligns the program with current operational needs,
and will get employees back on the payroll during this difficult
“While the Paycheck Protection Program has been helpful for many
small businesses across the country, some employers, like
restaurants and retailers, are unable to make full use of these
loans due to state and local reopening restrictions,” said
Congressman Gonzalez. “Small businesses are the heart and soul of
Northeast Ohio’s economy, and it is vital that we provide this
additional relief to ensure our local business owners are able to
take full advantage of their PPP loans and help restart our
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"As we continue to ensure the health and safety of
Americans during this pandemic, it’s critical that we also protect
our small businesses and provide them with the support they need to
get through these challenging times," said Congressman Joyce. "I'm
proud to join Representatives Gonzalez, LaHood, and Murphy to
introduce this bipartisan bill and ensure employers like restaurants
and retailers have the flexibility they need to stay afloat until
they can once again open their doors, our constituents can get back
to work, and our economy is reignited."
“The Paycheck Protection Program has assisted more
than 125,000 Ohio businesses. However, we understand that Congress’s
quick and broad actions still require fine-tuning to address the
unique situations of many employers, including restaurants and other
small businesses. I’m proud to join in introducing this bipartisan
legislation to provide additional flexibility so that small
businesses can fully utilize the benefits of the Paycheck Protection
Program, keep their employees on the payroll, and reopen
successfully in the coming weeks,” said Congressman Wenstrup.
“The Paycheck Protection Program is a vital financial assistance
lifeline for small business owners. For the PPP to ultimately
succeed, small business owners need greater flexibility as the
economy reopens. NFIB thanks Representative Gonzalez for recognizing
this need and supports the Promoting Flexibility for Small Business
Owners Act. We urge increased flexibility in the next COVID-19
response legislation,” said Kevin Kuhlman, vice president of federal
government relations at the National Federation of Independent
The Promoting Flexibility for Small Business Owners Act is supported
by the National Federation of Independent Business (NFIB) and the
National Restaurant Association.
Read the full text of the bill here.
[Office of Congressman Darin LaHood]