BRUNSWICK COUNTY, N.C. (WECT) - Congressman David Rouzer (R-NC7) said Monday he fully expects lawmakers to go back to Washington, DC in the next month or so to add additional funding to the Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security (CARES) Act, the $2.2 trillion stimulus bill passed last month to help families and businesses overcome the impact of the coronavirus pandemic. Specifically, Rep. Rouzer talked about the Payroll Protection Program part of the bill, the $350 billion initiative designed to help businesses with fewer than 500 employees
“I fully anticipate Congress will go back in session in two or three weeks,” Rep. Rouzer said. “We will probably have a huge demand for this program, which will necessitate additional funding for it, and I anticipate that will happen. I also fully anticipate that in the course of last week, this week and the following week, we’re going to find things that need to be adjusted and fixed. I anticipate congress will be putting together a fourth package probably in the next month, five or six weeks.”
In a video conference call today set up by the Southport-Oak Island Area Chamber of Commerce, Rouzer outlined the many aspects of the PPP. It provides businesses with funding to pay up to eight weeks of payroll costs including benefits to employees. According to the U.S. Treasury, the funding can also be used to pay interest on mortgages, rent, and utilities. If employers keep workers on the payroll through the end of June, Rep. Rouzer said the loan can be fully forgiven. Instead of applying with a federal agency like the Small Business Association for this program, business owners can reach out to their local bank to sign up.
“Some of these banks are one hundred percent in, and more banks are signing up,” Rep. Rouzer said during the call. “There is only one that I know that has decided not to take any more applications, and that is Wells Fargo. I know Bank of America announced they were going to expand their reach to not only their customers but those who have been unable to find a bank yet that would be willing to service them. I can tell you from talking to the North Carolina Bankers Association, the vast majority of community banks in North Carolina, if they are not already participating, they will soon be participating in this program.”
To see the specifics of the CARES Act, including links to the application, click here.