SANTA BARBARA, Calif. — For small businesses struggling, help is here with a second round of money from the federal Paycheck Protection Program.
This week, the small business administration is set to roll out the second round of PPP loans.
With new COVID-19 cases climbing as Santa Barbara County enters its fifth week in the regional stay-at-home order, the federal government is extending a helping hand to small business suffering.
Stuck with only takeout options for the foreseeable future, Shoreline Beach Cafe manager Cameron Pyles is eagerly awaiting help.
“We're only doing about 20-30% of what our normal business would be,” he said.
The PPP provides low-interest loans to eligible small businesses which can be forgiven if certain criteria are met.
There's $284 billion available for this round.
“There's no telling how long this will go and we need it to bring staff back,” Pyles said. “We need it for the uncertainty of the longevity of everything."
During the first round of PPP loans, locally owned American Riviera Bank supported 12,000 jobs throughout the Central Coast.
“Last year, we did above 615 loans totaling over $117 million,” executive vice president and chief risk officer Laurel Sykes said.
Businesses that have already received a loan will be able to apply again.
“You do need to prove that you've experienced a 25% reduction in revenue in one quarter of 2020 over 2019,” Sykes said.
Last year, the first round of funding for PPP loans ran out in just 10 days.
This time around, most restaurant mangers believe that it’ll provide yet another boost for their business.
“If it's one, two or three months it would help us at least to survive and get back on our feet,” Pyles concluded.
The program will conclude on March 31 or earlier if the money runs out similar to how it did during the program’s first round.
Banks believe that they’ll be able to start sending these loan applications next week.
Businesses can apply on American Riviera Bank's website.