WASHINGTON – On Thursday, July 22, the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) and Public-Private Strategies Institute (PPSI) hosted an Atlantic and Southeast Regions (New York, New Jersey, Puerto Rico, U.S. Virgin Islands, Alabama, Florida, Georgia, Kentucky, Mississippi, North Carolina, South Carolina and, Tennessee) briefing for small business owners on COVID-19 economic aid and recovery as part of the “Getting Back on Track: Help is Here” webinar series.
Over 2,300 participants joined the livestream briefing featuring U.S. House Small Business Committee Chair and U.S. Representative Nydia Velázquez (New York). Rep. Velázquez commented, “Across the country, small firms have stepped up to serve their neighbors during these dark times. The American Rescue Plan, combined with the prior money distributed through the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) and Economic Injury Disaster Loan (EIDL) program, has gone a long way towards helping business owners get back on their feet. As Chairwoman of the Small Business Committee, I’m continuing the work to ensure the interests of small businesses are front and center.”
Participants joined an in-depth question and answer session with SBA Acting Regional Administrators from Regions II & IV, B.J. Paprocki and Janita R. Stewart, respectively. Mr. Paprocki and Ms. Stewart provided detailed updates on low-interest disaster relief aid and American Rescue Plan programs, such as the Shuttered Venue Operators Grant and the Paycheck Protection Program forgiveness process. They also discussed technical assistance that SBA district offices could provide applicants.
Webinar guests heard from Veronica Pugin, Senior Advisor to the Office of Capital Access, about updates to the Economic Injury Disaster Loan (EIDL) small business program to help small business owners, self-employed gig workers, and entrepreneurs restart and grow their businesses. Ms. Pugin stated that “The Biden Administration and SBA continue to offer small businesses support via American Rescue Plan programs like the COVID EIDL – a borrower-friendly small business loan program that can help small businesses build back better.” Additionally, Pugin highlighted that “The SBA is enacting process improvements to make COVID EIDL more accessible to small business owners.”
Rhett Buttle, President of Public-Private Strategies Institute, emphasized, “As we continue our “Getting Back on Track Tour”, we are proud to work with the U.S. Small Business Administration to help small business owners and entrepreneurs learn about resources to build back better.”
SBA and PPSI organizers commented, “We are thrilled to be joined for today’s program by U.S. House Small Business Committee Chair Nydia Velázquez and Veronica Pugin from the Office of Capital Access to learn about the important work they are doing to make access to capital more equitable. We will continue sharing information on access to capital, digital tools, and how small business owners can be vaccine leaders as we build a more equitable economy.”
SBA recommends applicants, interested parties, and qualified entities check these additional resources for economic aid and vaccinations:
- SBA Disaster Assistance Customer Service Center: 1-800-659-2955. Operation Hours: 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. ET Monday through Friday; 1-800-877-8339 for the deaf and hard of hearing or DisasterCustomerService@sba.gov
- Local Resource Partners: https://www.sba.gov/local-assistance or www.sba.gov/asistencia-local
- SBA’s Guide to Federal Contracting: https://www.sba.gov/federal-contracting
- 17 language translations of support information to explain COVID-19 EIDL
- SBA’s National Small Business Week Virtual Summit, September 13-15, 2021: www.sba.gov/national-small-business-week
- Getting Back on Track: Help is Here Virtual Webinar Series: Register at Getting Back on Track: Help is Here!
- Subscribe to the SBA’s e-newsletter: www.sba.gov/updates
- Follow the SBA on Twitter: @SBAgov
- Visit vaccines.gov and healthcare.gov for healthcare and vaccination resources.