As small businesses continue to feel an economic impact of the COVID-19 public health crisis, Gov. Tom Wolf called on the General Assembly to provide additional funding to support these businesses.
“The COVID-19 pandemic is a public health crisis, but it is also an economic crisis. In order to help Pennsylvania’s economy recover from the effects of COVID-19, it is vital that we continue to support businesses in Pennsylvania, especially as so many have taken on additional work and costs to keep their employees and customers safe since reopening,” said Wolf. “Small businesses have been significantly impacted by the COVID-19 mitigation efforts and further support is needed to strengthen the economy, so I am calling on the General Assembly to approve additional funds to support our small businesses.”
As part of his fall legislative agenda, Wolf is calling on the General Assembly to provide an additional $225 million in federal Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security (CARES) Act funding in the form of forgivable loans and grants to small businesses in Pennsylvania through the COVID-19 Relief Statewide Small Business Assistance Program. In addition, he is proposing $100 million in forgivable loans and grants for the hospitality, leisure and service industries, including restaurants and bars, salons and barber shops.
The COVID-19 Relief Statewide Small Business Assistance funding was developed in partnership with state lawmakers and allocated through the state budget, which included $2.6 billion in federal stimulus funds through the CARES Act, of which $225 million was earmarked for relief for small businesses, including historically disadvantaged businesses. Thousands of businesses have qualified for this grant program, which continues to distribute funding.