PROVIDENCE, RI (WPRI) – Before Dan McKee received its first injection of COVID-19 vaccine and was sworn in as Governor of Rhode Island, he made an appearance in his weekly Small Business Forum which focused on recent changes to the Paycheck Protection Program.
“I’ll be back next week and if all goes well I’ll be back as governor,” McKee said at the virtual event.
The forum continued with many regulars including Mark Hayward from the Small Business Administration. He focused on two points, the first being a message to business owners, including independent contractors and sole proprietors who may not have applied for a PPP loan yet.
“Twenty-six thousand loans have been made in the state of Rhode Island for more than $ 2.5 billion which will be repayable,” he exclaimed.
“We want to make sure these small businesses take advantage of the new rules, and we really don’t know what all the rules are yet,” Hayward added, saying they hope to have more information by the end of the week.
Hayward also had a message for companies whose applications were approved by a lender.
“Don’t close the loan. Don’t accept the funds yet, ”he said. “We understand there is a 10 day rule here where they have to disperse this. For you to be eligible for the new calculation methods, this loan cannot be financed. If the loan is funded, it cannot be canceled.
Another topic of discussion was a program offered by the Rhode Island Society of Certified Public Accountants (RISCPA).
“It’s a free program where you can get free accounting assistance on how to complete it, because as we all know it’s very complicated. It’s very confusing for a lot of people, ”said Elizabeth Tanner of the RI Business Regulation Department of PPP loans.
Commerce Secretary Stefan Pryor also provided an up-to-date list of banks accepting PPP loan requests, which he says changes frequently.
Pryor also spoke about the relaxed restrictions for catered events that were announced during last week’s COVID-19 briefing. He said they aimed to allow an increase in the capacity of these events to 100 people indoors and 150 people outdoors by April 10.