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60,000 Small Businesses in Colorado Have Benefited from the Economic Injury Disaster Loan Program as They Recover From the Pandemic

U.S. Senator Michael Bennet

Today, Colorado U.S. Senators Michael Bennet and John Hickenlooper and several of their colleagues urged the Small Business Administration (SBA) to extend the deadline for Economic Injury Disaster Loan (EIDL) repayment to help small businesses in Colorado and across the country recover as the U.S. economy continues to improve.

“The EIDL program has provided a lifeline for [a] wide array of industries and business sectors,” wrote Bennet, Hickenlooper, and the senators in their letter to SBA Administrator Isabella Casillas Guzman. “While there are many hopeful signs that the economy is improving, most small businesses are not yet in a position to benefit from the recovery due to their smaller profit margins, more limited inventories, lack of access to capital, and supply chain delays.”

“The enterprises that turned to the Small Business Administration (SBA) during the pandemic include some of the most vulnerable businesses in our nation,” she added. “Granting them additional time before having to pay back their loans would not only provide much-needed relief during this period of continued uncertainty, increased costs, and supply chain challenges, but also put them in a much better position to thrive once the economy is fully recovered.”

U.S. Senator John Hickenlooper. Image courtesy of his Twitter feed

Since Congress allocated funding for the COVID EIDL program in 2020, nearly four million small businesses across the country have benefited from these loans — including 60,000 in Colorado. Over the past year, small businesses have still been faced with difficult decisions as the U.S. has contended with new variants of COVID-19. SBA can reduce the uncertainty small businesses are facing by extending the EIDL loan repayment period.

Bennet, Hickenlooper, and the senators concluded: “When Congress funded the COVID EIDL program in 2020, it did so to ensure small businesses would have access to the capital they needed to weather this pandemic and ultimately come out of it stronger. After two turbulent years, we know the end is in sight, and SBA should continue to provide small enterprises the resources and relief. We ask that you recognize the continued uncertainty and struggles for small businesses and extend the COVID-19 EIDL deferment period.”

In addition to Bennet and Hickenlooper, the letter was signed by U.S. Senators Raphael Warnock (D-Ga.), Ben Cardin (D-Md.), Maggie Hassan (D-N.H.), Mark Kelly (D-Ariz.), Maria Cantwell (D-Wash.), Charles Schumer (D-N.Y.), Catherine Cortez Masto (D-Nev.), Jacky Rosen (D-Nev.), Jeanne Shaheen (D-N.H.), Cory Booker (D-N.J.), Mazie Hirono (D-Hawaii), Chris Coons (D-Del.), Ed Markey (D-Mass.), and Tammy Duckworth (D-Ill.)

The text of the letter is available HERE.