More PPP loans available to area businesses

Last year, small local businesses that found themselves adversely affected due to COVID-19 pandemic-related closures and slowdowns were able to benefit from Paycheck Protection Program loans from the federal government.

A second round of PPP funding was launched in January by the U.S. Small Business Administration and the U.S. Treasury Department, and so far, Jackson County’s three community banks have approved more than 550 PPP loan applications, offering beneficiaries in northeastern Kansas more than $9.5 million in financial aid.

The deadline to apply for this round of PPP loans is March 31, and representatives from the county’s three banks — Denison State Bank, The Farmers State Bank and GNBank Holton — are encouraging interested business owners to apply if they haven’t already.

“We’ll do anything we can to help these small businesses get the money that they need to keep their doors open, to keep the employees on staff, to do whatever they need to do to keep their business afloat. Don’t put it off,” GNBank Holton president Ken Glennon said of the PPP loan program.

Business owners and managers — including Scott Steffes, general manager at the Netawaka Fitness Center, which closed its doors for more than three months last year because of the pandemic — are also encouraging other business owners to take advantage of the program.

“I would certainly recommend it to other business owners, if it is right for them,” said Steffes, who noted that the fitness center was eligible for PPP loans both in last year’s first round and this year’s second round of disbursements.

The Paycheck Protection Program, a $953-billion business loan program established by the federal Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act, was enacted to help small businesses, self-employed workers, sole proprietors, certain nonprofit organizations and tribal businesses continue paying their workers, it was reported.

PPP allows entities to apply for low-interest private loans to pay for their payroll and certain other overhead costs. The amount of a PPP loan is approximately equal to 2.5 times the applicant's average monthly payroll costs.

The loan may be partially or fully forgiven if the business keeps its employee counts and employee wages stable. In the program’s first round, the deadline to apply for a PPP loan was June 30, 2020, but was later extended to Aug. 8.

Late last year, the U.S. Congress passed the Consolidated Appropriations Act of 2021, including $284 billion in forgivable loans to small businesses via PPP. The program was reopened on Jan. 11, it was reported.

The second round of PPP funds is aimed at small businesses or sole proprietors who may have missed out on the first round of funds, as well as 501(c)(6) nonprofit organizations and farmers. Small businesses that received PPP funds last year are also eligible to apply for more funding, with certain caveats.

(For more on this story, please log in to your account and click on the March 10, 2021 E-edition.)

The Holton Recorder

109 W. Fourth St.
Holton, KS 66436
Phone: 785-364-3141

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