The federal government has approved nearly $4 billion in economic stimulus funds for Alabama small businesses, according to a Tuesday afternoon social media post from Congressman Robert Aderholt (AL-04).
The funding is part of the federal government’s effort to provide relief to the small business sector. Included in the CARES Act, the nation’s $2.2 trillion economic stimulus package, is a $350 billion Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) administered by the Small Business Administration (SBA).
The money comes to eligible small businesses in the form of government-backed bank loans.
The news is a welcome relief to the Yellowhammer State’s small businesses which had encountered difficulties connecting with the program at its launch on April 3.
Aderholt and other members of Alabama’s congressional delegation have been working to facilitate the loans with SBA. He stated that there have now been 19,244 loans approved by SBA.
So far 19,244 PPP loans have been approved in Alabama. For a total dollar amount of $3,819,600,518. This program has had some issues, but they are getting worked out and it’s having a big impact on Alabama. We need to approve more money for this fund ASAP!
— Robert_Aderholt (@Robert_Aderholt) April 14, 2020
Scott Latham, president and CEO of the Alabama Bankers Association, noted that these figures from SBA put Alabama in the top half of states issuing the stimulus loans.
“Alabama banks remain hard at work assisting small business owners in keeping Alabamians employed with Paycheck Protection Program loans,” he said in a statement from his organization. “According to this latest report, Alabama ranks 21st in the number of PPP loans provided and 22nd in the total value of loans issued.”
Latham invited small business owners to continue communicating with their banks about pursuing assistance.
“Despite challenges with backlogs of applications along with systems delays across the nation, Alabama banks are persevering to provide much needed help to workers all across our state,” he added. “Small business owners are encouraged to remain in close contact with local bankers to take advantage of this and other opportunities available during this pandemic.”
Aderholt’s support of injecting more federal dollars into the stimulus program is noteworthy. He serves on the powerful House Appropriations Committee through which the first round of funding traveled.
Last week, the North Alabama congressman told Yellowhammer News, “I think we will soon see more funds being added to this account.”
Tim Howe is an owner of Yellowhammer Multimedia