This week, the San Antonio Chamber of Commerce and 14 other San Antonio non-profit, membership-based 501(c)6 organizations wrote a letter to Congressional leadership asking for extension of eligibility within the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP). The Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act (CARES Act) provided forgivable loans to 501(c)3 and 501(c)19 non-profit organizations, but not other non-profits such as ours that provide services to our business and broader community. The PPP program is intended to provide a way for small businesses to retain employees and have enough cash to continue operations through the summer. It provides small businesses with funds to pay up to eight weeks of payroll costs, including benefits. Funds can also be used to pay interest on mortgages, rent, and utilities.
Our fifteen organizations represent large and small employers across diverse industries in San Antonio. During the pandemic, we have continued to support the needs of our members through training, connecting people with resources, and providing education on federal, state, and local policies. We remain committed to our members and will continue to adapt to the changing tide throughout the next several months.
Many of our Congressional members in the House and Senate have advocated for extension of eligibility of the program to our groups. Two bills that would address this originated in the House of Representatives, including the Health and Economic Recovery Omnibus Emergency Solutions Act (HEROES Act) which is expected to pass the House today. While that is a great step in the process, it is unlikely to pass the Senate as drafted. We will remain engaged in this process and are hopeful that we can have access to financial support as we continue our work throughout the year.
Thank you to the members of the Bexar County delegation for their leadership on this issue. For more information on PPP, visit the SBA website.