Payment Protection Program runs out of funding

Published: Apr. 16, 2020 at 7:14 PM CDT
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The nearly $350 billion Paycheck Protection Program funds started going out about two weeks ago.

But federal government leaders say businesses have already asked for all of that money.

Small Business Administration leaders announced they would stop accepting applications after approving more than 1.6 million requests.

Lawmakers say they saw this coming and are now pushing for an additional $250 billion to keep the program funded.

Congress created the program to provide financial support to businesses and their employees, but without additional funding, some may now be shut out.

"I haven't found a Democrat or a Republican yet that thinks it's a bad idea to get more money in a benevolent way into the hands of workers and small business employers. We can make some improvements to it, but let’s keep the momentum going," said Sen. Kevin Cramer, R-N.D.

"We have to refill it and it needs to happen. It should happen today. If it doesn't happen today it should happen tomorrow. This is absolutely essential, this is the difference between small businesses in our community going bankrupt and not,” said Rep. Kelly Armstrong, R-N.D.

"And already where we're seeing that there are shortages, like we've talked about with the PPP program, we're looking to make sure we address that. Phase Four then will be trying to figure out, based on how things are going, what else do we need to do?" said Sen. John Hoeven, R-N.D.

Hoeven and Cramer say he'll have a direct hand in Phase Four of the CARES Act and on economy re-opening plans.

President Donald Trump picked him to serve as a member of the President's Economic Task Force earlier Thursday.

Businesses who applied early tell us they are just recently beginning to receive money through the Paycheck Protection Program.