Hosting another telephone town hall this evening with Iowans across the state, U.S. Senator Joni Ernst (R-Iowa), a member of the Senate Small Business Committee and the Senate Agriculture Committee, heard from Iowa small business owners and farmers and provided an update on information about the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP), which she helped extend through the end of May, and other resources. Ernst was joined on the tele-town hall by Jayne Armstrong, District Director for U.S. Small Business Administration’s (SBA) Iowa District Office.
“After spending two weeks on the road hearing from folks in nearly 30 counties as part of my 99 County Tour, I’m continuing to connect with Iowans while working in Washington. Tonight’s tele-town hall was yet another great opportunity to hear directly from Iowa’s small business owners and farmers, and to help provide information about how to utilize the resources available to them,” said Senator Joni Ernst. “Iowa’s small businesses and our hardworking agriculture community are pillars of our state’s economy and way of life. As a member of the Senate Small Business Committee and the Agriculture Committee, I’m going to continue to take their voices to Washington and to fight tooth and nail on their behalf.”
At the end of last year, Ernst helped pass legislation that provided an additional $284 billion in funding for the PPP and launched the creation of the Shuttered Venues Operators Grant (SVOG), a program that includes over $16 billion in grants to shuttered venues like live venue operators, theatrical producers, live performing arts organization operators, and movie theater operators. Ernst also helped pass the bipartisan PPP Extension Act of 2021 to extend access to the PPP for small businesses through May 31.
In addition, Ernst is working to ensure that farmers and ranchers who are categorized as a partnership—many of which are small family farms—are able to use gross income when applying for PPP funds. She is pushing to allow Schedule F farmers who had loans forgiven in 2020 to recalculate their loans based on gross income.