When COVID-19 brought their business to a standstill, David and Michelle Becerra found hope in the Small Business Administration’s Paycheck Protection Program.
“When I saw the program, I thought, Ok great,” David said. “This is going to help us weather the storm so that by the time this all blows over, we can just get back into the groove of things.”
David is the co-founder of MDB Concepts, a Miami-based production company that was started in 2014. He said he identified a lender who participated in the PPP program and quickly worked to get their application in.
“We did submit the paperwork on day 1,” he said.
Days later, the couple learned funding for the program had run out. But this week, a new coronavirus relief bill potentially adding billions of dollars of critical aid to the PPP program was making its way through Washington.
“Small businesses that have had their doors closed for weeks on end … need this money,” Greg McBride, chief financial analyst for Bankrate.com, said. “It’s like oxygen for the survival of their business.”
Victoria Guerrero, SBA’s director for the South Florida district, said more than 88,000 PPP loans were approved before funding ran out.
“The SBA has processed in 14 days what it typically takes 14 years to process and approve loans,” Victoria said.
If more money is approved for the program, she had the following advice for small business owners who had already applied for the program.
“Chances are that if your application is already in the system, you will not have to apply again,” she said. “Each individual bank might be managing the program slightly differently so to be on the safe side, contact your lender and ask them [if you have to reapply].”
Michelle and David said they planned to keep checking in with their lender.
In the meantime, they said they were using their savings to get by.
“Right now, we’re living day-to-day because there’s no income coming in,” David said. “We have to do what we can to just keep moving forward.”
The bill is expected to be voted on in Congress on Thursday and could be signed by the president as early as the end of the week.