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Live Mic: Loans now available for small businesses to pay workers

(Photo Credit: Getty Images)

SALT LAKE CITY — Relief, in the form of loans — not a handout, not welfare — is now available for small businesses in the state suffering under the pandemic.

Miles Hansen, World Trade Center Utah president and CEO, joined Lee Lonsberry on Live Mic on KSL NewsRadio to discuss the second round of loans provided by the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) established by the federal government to help certain small businesses pay their workers.

Loans for small businesses

Hansen reminded listeners that small businesses keep Utah running; everyone either owns one, works for one of them or is a patron of one of more of them.

Lawmakers rolled out PPP originally in April and May of last year, and Utah led the nation in utilizing the program, Hansen said.

He said contractors, sole proprietors and mom-and-pop shops can apply for the loans to pay workers or yourself if you are a contractor.

“As long as people use the loans the way they designed to be used for, they can be forgiven,” Hansen said.

During the first round of PPP in the spring, he said, Utah had 93% of eligible payroll covered under the loans.

The Small Business Administration (SBA) estimates that the PPP loans saved 800,000 jobs in the state, half of Utah’s workforce.

Contractors can pay themselves

Lee asked how the business loans work for contractors.

Hansen said a nail-salon owner, for example, can apply for a PPP loan, but so can the salon workers because they are contractors for the owner.

Hansen advised small-business owners who have already received a PPP loan to go to their bank first. Others should visit coronavirus.utah.gov/business where one-on-one assistance is available from a group of expert volunteers.

“How much money is available, how long is it available and talk to me about first come, first served?” asked Lee.

About $325 billion is available, but it could go quickly because of the number of businesses in dire straits, Hansen said.

“We encourage people to reach out, act today to go figure out whether or not you’re eligible, get your application in so you can benefit in this program before the money runs out,” he said.

 

Live Mic with Lee Lonsberry can be heard weekdays from 12:30 p.m. to 3:00 p.m. on KSL NewsRadio. Users can find the show on the KSL NewsRadio website and app. 

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