Credit unions are a vital component to the delivery of financial services to many Americans and credit union members should have equal access to the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP), CUNA wrote to Senate Small Business Committee leadership Wednesday.
The hearing was conducted to examine implementation of Title I of the CARES Act, which includes the PPP language.
Although the pace of PPP lending has slowed, CUNA notes operational challenges remain and should be addressed if additional funding is provided. These include:
The letter also calls for Congressional action to relieve borrowers that carried out the PPP in good faith from any liability stemming from the structure and design of the PPP, as well as clarity on loan forgiveness, as the recently published loan forgiveness application is overly complex.
“The complexity of the forgiveness process presents an even greater challenge for small business as they have fewer resources to deploy on an overly complex application process. Moreover, feedback from our members indicates that the forms will likely require help from outside accountants and even attorneys for most businesses,” the letter reads. “This is an expense many of the smallest businesses cannot afford. Creating an overly complex forgiveness process would seem to be the antithesis to the spirit of a program designed to rapidly deploy resources to small business especially when the expectation is that the funds appropriated to PPP were never expected to be repaid.”
CUNA recommends Treasury and the SBA simplify the forgiveness application process for loans under $350,000, and should consider “making forgiveness of these loans automatic or require a simply good faith certification that the funds were spent on forgivable expenses.”