Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin and US Small Business Administration head Jovita Carranza urged Congress to provide more money for the SBA’s Paycheck Protection Program in a statement Wednesday night.
The new loan program was designed to help put millions of dollars directly into the hands of small business owners affected by coronavirus. But as CNN has reported, the program is expected to officially run out of funding by Wednesday evening or Thursday morning amid an impasse between Democrats and Republicans on funding it.
“We urge Congress to appropriate additional funds for the Paycheck Protection Program — a critical and overwhelmingly bipartisan program — at which point we will once again be able to process loan applications, issue loan numbers, and protect millions more paychecks,” the statement reads.
A senior Democratic aide, in reference to House Speaker Nancy Pelosi of California and Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer of New York, said: “Schumer and Pelosi staff spoke with Secretary Mnuchin and Treasury staff today. They agreed to continue talks tomorrow.”
Democrats have asked that any funding for the program include more money for local and state governments and hospitals. They have also requested that any additional money include a set-aside provision that would ensure vulnerable communities receive loans.