10.20.20

Gardner Statement on Partisans Blocking Paycheck Protection Program Extension

“Colorado needs help to get through this pandemic; it’s absurd that partisan politics would stop this important lifeline from reaching the American people.”

Washington, D.C. – U.S. Senator Cory Gardner (R-CO) released the following statement after Senate Democrats blocked a measure that would provide an additional round of the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) to help small businesses through the COVID-19 pandemic.

“This continued partisan obstruction of COVID-19 relief shows that Senate Democrats are more comfortable with people in the unemployment insurance office instead of on their employer’s payroll,” said Senator Gardner. “The Paycheck Protection Program has provided over $10 billion to help make sure that businesses in Colorado can stay open and keep people on payroll, and small business owners across our state have told me the Paycheck Protection Program saved their businesses – and that they desperately need another round to keep their businesses afloat. Colorado needs help to get through this pandemic; it’s absurd that partisan politics would stop this important lifeline from reaching the American people.”

You can read more about Senator Gardner’s actions to protect Coloradans from COVID-19 here.

Gardner is consistently requesting improvements to the Paycheck Protection Program to better serve Coloradans:

  • In September 2020, Gardner voted for the Delivering Immediate Relief to America’s Families, Schools, and Small Businesses Act, which provided changes to the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) to allow for a second load and simplified the loan forgiveness application process for current and future PPP recipients receiving loans of $150,000 or less.
  • Gardner and six of his Senate colleagues urged Senate leadership to increase flexibility for restaurant owners and food supply chain workers under the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) in July 2020.
  • Gardner joined the Reviving the Economy Sustainably Towards a Recovery in Twenty-twenty (RESTART) Act in July 2020 to give businesses that took out PPP loans the flexibility they need to utilize the PPP effectively. 
  • In July 2020, Gardner introduced the Paycheck Protection Program Extension and Modification Act of 2020, which would allow recipients of the PPP who have already received a PPP loan apply for a second loan and extend the deadline to apply for PPP loans through December 31, 2020.
  • Gardner urged U.S. Secretary of the Treasury Steven Mnuchin and Small Business Administration (SBA) Administrator Jovita Carranza to ease the paperwork requirements for small businesses seeking loan forgiveness under the PPP in June 2020.
  • In June 2020, the President signed into law a version of the Paycheck Protection Flexibility Act, which Gardner introduced with Senators Angus King (I-ME) and Steve Daines (R-MT) to extend the PPP loan period and provide greater flexibility to loan holders.
  • Gardner called on the leaders of the Senate Committee on Small Business and Entrepreneurship to work to extend the loan forgiveness period and rehire date for the PPP.
  • Gardner secured new guidance from the Small Business Administration (SBA) to allow partnerships and seasonal employers to increase their PPP loan amounts.
  • Gardner secured guidance from the U.S. Department of the Treasury clarifying that rural electric cooperatives with fewer than 500 employees are eligible for the PPP.
  • Gardner introduced bipartisan legislation with Senator Joe Manchin (D-WV) to increase the length of time that businesses have to spend PPP funds from 8-16 weeks.
  • In a May 2020 letter to his Republican colleagues, Gardner requested changes to the PPPbased on his conversations with Colorado small businesses.
  • Gardner and members of the Colorado congressional delegation secured clarification from the SBA in April 2020 that Critical Access Hospitals (CAHs) and Rural Health Clinics (RHCs) are eligible for assistance from the PPP.
  • In April 2020, Gardner, Governor Jared Polis, and Senator Michael Bennet (D-CO) made a unified request to improve the CARES Act, including making modifications to PPP, to better support Coloradans through COVID-19.

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Cory Gardner is a member of the U.S. Senate serving Colorado. He sits on the Energy & Natural Resources Committee, the Foreign Relations Committee, the Commerce, Science, & Transportation Committee, and is the Chairman of the Subcommittee on East Asia, the Pacific, and International Cybersecurity Policy.