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SBA Announces Opening of Paycheck Protection Program Direct Forgiveness Portal  

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WASHINGTON – The U.S. Small Business Administration is launching a streamlined application portal to allow borrowers with Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) loans of $150,000 or less through participating lenders to apply for forgiveness directly through the SBA.    
“In Region VII there are 867 lenders already signed up to use the new forgiveness portal and they completed 216,938 PPP loans under $150,000, representing over $4.6 billion dollars of PPP loans.  The opening on this portal allows a simpler method for borrower and lender to meet the need of the business, lender and the agency,” said Region 7 Acting Administrator Leon Milobar. 
This new change will help rush relief to over 6.5 million smallest of small businesses nationally, which has been the priority of SBA Administrator Isabel Guzman since day one.
The new forgiveness platform will begin accepting applications from borrowers on August 4th, 2021.  Lenders are required to opt-in to this program through https://directforgiveness.sba.gov.
Area lender weighed in on why they are opting to use the new Forgiveness portal.
Leslie Anderson, CEO of i3 Bank in Bennington, NE, said “We think it provides an easier and quicker route for our customers.”’
“Chisholm Trail State Bank has opted-in to the SBA PPP Forgiveness Portal to allow our customer’s a streamline service to file forgiveness on loans of $150,000 and less.   As always, our customers can contact us for any questions or help they need during the forgiveness process,” said Cuy Mauck, President & CEO of Chisholm Trail State Bank in Wichita, KS.
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.
“This initiative will allow PPP borrowers to put their concerns of achieving full forgiveness behind them and focus on operating and growing their businesses again,” said Patrick Kelley, Associate Administrator for SBA’s Office of Capital Access. “We are pleased to be able to assist financial institutions across the U.S. in processing forgiveness applications for small business owners.”   
 
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 2021:
◦ SBA approved over 6.5M loans totaling over $275B
◦ The average loan size was ~$42 thousand (compared to $101 thousand in 2020)
◦ 96% of loans went to businesses with fewer than 20 employees (compared to just 87% in 2020.)
◦ 32% of loans went to businesses in LMI communities (compared to just 24% in 2020)
Direct Forgiveness Summary
• Over 600 banks have opted into 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. It 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.   
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.    

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