As PPP leaves small businesses behind, The Saving Our Streets Act fills in some immediate gaps

On the release of the Saving Our Streets Act from Senator Kamala Harris, Main Street Alliance Executive Director Amanda Ballantyne had this to say:

"The Saving Our Streets Act is exactly the kind of targeted, streamlined support small businesses need to make it through this crisis. For the millions of micro, small, veteran, disability and minority-owned businesses left out of the Paycheck Protection Program or shuffled to the back of the line, the Saving Our Streets Act provides a critical lifeline. The dual approach of direct funding and targeted recipients, rather than targeted lenders is key to making sure the right support gets to all communities.

The economic horizon remains far too uncertain for the majority of small business owners to take on substantial debt in the form of large loans offered through the Paycheck Protection Program. The Saving our Streets Act is designed to match the reality of how main street businesses actually operate. In addition, this program addresses the inherent inequities in our lending system, which leave business owners of color particularly vulnerable to discrimination. A report from the Center for Responsible Lending shows that a large majority of minority owned businesses, including 95 percent of Black business owners, have little chance of receiving a PPP loan through a bank or credit union without existing relationships to 7(a) lenders. The priorities of large banks are being revealed, and this discrimination is playing out in real time.

We need a comprehensive program, like the Save Our Streets Act, that targets the small businesses and communities that desperately need support."