Chairwoman Velázquez on The Heroes Act
Washington, May 12, 2020
Washington, D.C.— Today, House Small Business Committee Chairwoman Nydia M. Velázquez (D-NY) issued the following statement on the introduction of H.R. 6800, The Heroes Act:
“As the impact of coronavirus continues to devastate Main Streets across America, the Heroes Act is the next step towards rebooting our economy and ensuring relief is reaching small businesses.
“The Heroes Act would continue the flow of capital to small businesses in need by authorizing an additional $10 billion in economic injury disaster grants. The bill would also implement similar reforms to SBA’s flagship lending programs as were taken in the aftermath of the Great Recession, including reducing the cost of capital by waiving fees, expanding the pool of available capital, and increasing loan guarantees to incentivize lenders to make more loans to small businesses.
“Critically, this legislation includes commonsense reforms to the Paycheck Protection Program to make it operate more efficiently, effectively, and in line with Congressional intent. In order to meet the reality that many stay-at-home orders have required small businesses to close, the bill would extend the PPP coverage period for borrowers until the end of the calendar year. To reach small businesses in underserved communities, the bill would set-aside funds for community lenders, with an additional carve-out for small businesses with ten or fewer employees.
“Finally, the release of data on PPP loan recipients is critical for transparency, accountability, and additional guardrails on the program. That is why this bill mandates regular reporting by the SBA on specific demographic, industry, size, and geographic data points for PPP loans and EIDL loans and grants.
“As small business owners continue to take steps to protect themselves, their employees, and customers from the spread of coronavirus, they deserve to have a federal government willing and able to provide efficient and effective relief.”