SBA Region One Review - July 30, 2021

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New England Regional Office  - July 30, 2021

u s small business administration

Happy Birthday SBA: Helping Entrepreneurs Start, Grow, Expand and Recover for 68 Years

image of amy bassett

Amy K. Bassett

Acting Regional Administrator

New England Regional Office

U.S. Small Business Administration

When President Dwight D. Eisenhower signed the Small Business Act on July 30, 1953, creating the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA), I’m sure he couldn’t have predicted what a lasting impact the agency would have on small businesses throughout the United States. And he certainly wouldn’t have been able to foresee the devastating impact of the coronavirus pandemic on the nation’s small businesses and the role SBA has played in our nation’s economic recovery.

For business owners, the last sixteen months have been extremely challenging.  During this time, our nation’s small businesses dealt with unimaginable changes and setbacks as they weathered the storm of the coronavirus pandemic. 

Through it all, the SBA has been at the forefront of our country’s recovery effort.  The SBA has administered vital economic aid programs that are providing a lifeline to millions of American small businesses and their employees. These programs continue to support America’s small businesses during this unprecedented time, powering the nation’s economy and our communities.

Although some of our relief programs are no longer open to new applicants, with more and more individuals getting vaccinated and with different sectors of the population reopening for business, it is a good time to remember that pandemic relief is only one part of the SBA story. We have been helping businesses for 68 years.  We have solutions to fit every small business at any stage in the business lifecycle. 

Our pandemic relief programs were very specific in their requirements and weren’t for the purpose of expanding or starting a business.  However, our regular offerings of SBA-guaranteed loans can be used for these purposes.  SBA-guaranteed loans are often an ideal funding option for small business owners who are creditworthy but don’t qualify for conventional financing. SBA works with participating lenders to reduce their risk, increasing the likelihood your loan will be approved with the terms that work best for you.  If you decide SBA-guaranteed loans are a good fit for your business, SBA makes it easy for you to connect with lenders via our Lender Match tool. Lender Match is SBA’s free online referral program that connects small businesses with more than 800 participating SBA-approved lenders.  

In addition to our financing programs, our resource partners— SCORE Mentors, Women’s Business Centers (WBC), Small Business Development Centers (SBDC) and Veteran Business Outreach Centers (VBOC) are available to provide high-quality training and counseling designed to meet the specific needs of small business owners— for free or at a low cost. Our resource partners have taken on an impactful role in assisting with our relief efforts by counseling our local businesses and helping them work through the challenges of operating a business during a pandemic and finding the financial assistance they need to survive and thrive.  You can find SBA resource partners near you at:  https://www.sba.gov/local-assistance (sba.gov). 

I hope President Eisenhower would be happy with the legacy he created.  For the past 68 years, the U.S. Small Business Administration has been making the American dream of business ownership a reality.  The SBA empowers entrepreneurs and small business owners with the resources and support they need to start, grow, or expand their businesses, or recover from a declared disaster.   SBA will continue to deliver these services through an extensive network of SBA field offices and partnerships with public and private organizations for many years to come.  To learn more, visit www.sba.gov.

Illustration of an SBA building with a banner that says 68 years. The text reads, supporting small businesses for nearly 7 decades.

Illustration of a laptop with text that includes, PPP Forgiveness Portal

The SBA will launch a streamlined application portal to allow borrowers with Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) loans of $150,000 or less to apply for forgiveness directly through the SBA.  

This new change will help rush relief to over 6.5 million smallest of small businesses. The new forgiveness platform will begin accepting applications from borrowers on August 4th, 2021. Lenders are required to opt-in to this program on the web at:  https://directforgiveness.sba.gov.  In addition to the technology platform, the SBA is standing up a PPP customer service team to answer questions and directly assist borrowers with their forgiveness applications.  Borrowers that need assistance or have questions should call (877) 552-2692, Monday – Friday, 8 a.m. - 8 p.m. EST.

Paycheck Protection Program Summary

  • Overall, the SBA and lenders have worked to originate over 11.7 million loans totaling nearly $800 billion in relief to over 8.5 million small businesses.

  • In New England, the SBA and lenders originated over 488 thousand loans totaling nearly $43 billion in relief.  

Direct Forgiveness Summary

  • Over 600 banks have opted in to direct forgiveness, enabling over 2.17mm borrowers to apply through the portal (This represents 30% of loans $150,000 or less that have not yet submitted for forgiveness)

Established by the CARES Act in 2020, the PPP was among the first COVID-19 small business economic aid programs and provided more than $798 billion in economic relief to small businesses and nonprofits across the nation, keeping employees working, and helping businesses come back stronger than ever.  View the Interim Final Rule on PPP Forgiveness.

Other programs include Economic Injury Disaster Loan (EIDL), EIDL Advance, Targeted EIDL Advance, Supplemental EIDL Advance, Restaurant Revitalization Fund, Shuttered Venue Operators Grant, and SBA Debt Relief program. To learn more about these programs, please visit www.sba.gov/relief.   


10k awards for shuttered venues across the country image

Recently, the SBA reached a milestone of successfully awarding over $7.5 billion in Shuttered Venue Operators Grants (SVOGs) to more than 10,000 hard-hit live entertainment small businesses, nonprofits, and venues. Across New England as of midday July 26, there have been 626 awards for $413,759,352.  

The SVOG program is designed to assist in getting the nation’s cultural institutions, which are critical to the economy and were among the first to shutter, back on track.

With the grant funds, venues like the Downtown Cabaret Theatre Company of Bridgeport, in Fairfield County, Connecticut, are returning to operation.  “The sheer weight and excitement by the staff and friends when we got that notice of award was great cause for celebration,” Hugh Hallinan, executive producer of the Downtown Cabaret Theatre said. “The grant will enable us to have a more organized and human approach to open up and we can do it at an accelerated rate.” 

The SVOG portal remains open and funding is still available for all eligible applicants. SBA’s Office of Disaster Assistance Customer Service Center is available from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. ET to provide technical assistance with the SVOG application portal and can be reached at 1-800-659-2955 or, for the deaf and hard-of-hearing, 1-800-877-8339.   


Exploring Surety Bonding Coast-to-Coast image

 

The SBA guarantees surety bonds up to 90%!

 

Prepare for anticipated infrastructure spending and future contracting opportunities that may become available. Find out why the Surety Bond Guarantee Program is seeing record activity, with a fast and easy approval process through the Prior Approval or Preferred surety bond program.

Find out how the SBA can help you win and secure your next contract!

 

Hear from a panel of successful small businesses, resource providers and experts that will provide insights on how to master the government contracting process.

Join SBA Detroit, Michigan and SBA Boston, Massachusetts on August 25, 2021 @ 11AM EDT 

 

REGISTER


Local Business Assistance

 

Stay up-to-date on SBA programs, changes, reforms and training webinars by subscribing to SBA email updates (if you aren't already on our mailing list) at: https://www.sba.gov/updates.  And by following the New England SBA office in your state on twitter: 

New England: @SBA_NewEngland

Connecticut: @SBA_Connecticut

Maine: @SBA_Maine

Massachusetts: @SBA_MA

New Hampshire: @SBA_NH

Rhode Island: @SBA_RhodeIsland

Vermont: @SBA_Vermont