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Luria presses SBA on minority-owned businesses, Economic Injury Disaster Loan Program

Elaine LuriaCongresswoman Elaine Luria, D-Va., sent a letter Monday to Small Business Administration Administrator Jovita Carranza to demand answers regarding recent SBA actions that limit the effectiveness of Economic Injury Disaster Loan program, including for minority-owned businesses.

Luria was troubled by reports that minority-owned businesses may be receiving SBA assistance at a rate of as low as one-third of other businesses.

The EIDL program was intended to assist businesses impacted by the coronavirus pandemic but has fallen short of its mission.

“As a former small business owner, I understand the frustrations that small business owners across Coastal Virginia feel during these trying times,” Luria said. “The SBA’s administration of EIDL and EIDL emergency advance grants has made critical relief programs difficult to access. Minority-owned businesses have been hit hardest by this pandemic but are receiving less support. SBA must address these issues immediately.”

The letter demands answers to the following questions:

  1. How much is remaining in available appropriations for the EIDL and EIDL emergency advance programs?
  2. How many EIDL and EIDL emergency advance applications are pending SBA approval, and how many have already been approved or denied?
  3. How many EIDL and EIDL emergency advance applications from minority-, women-, and veteran-owned small businesses are pending approval, and what is their rate of approval as compared to that of other small businesses?
  4. What is the dollar amount of pending EIDL and EIDL emergency advance applications?
  5. What amount of appropriations do you anticipate would be necessary to fully meet program demand for EIDL and EIDL emergency advances?
  6. Do you plan to reopen EIDL and EIDL emergency advance applications for non-farm businesses? If so, when?
  7. Some constituents have reported receiving EIDL loans for significantly less than what they had applied for and well under SBA’s self-imposed $150,000 cap; can SBA share the decision-making process that leads to this occurrence?
  8. What plans does SBA have to improve the customer service experience for applicants, including faster turnarounds, enhanced transparency about the application review process, and clearer guidelines for how applicants can appeal decisions?

To view the full letter click here.

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