Thursday, Congressman Mike Rogers, R-Saks, voted in favor of HR266, the Paycheck Protection Program and Health Care Enhancement Act. The House of Representatives passed the bipartisan bill which now goes to President Donald J. Trump (R) for his signature.
“Today I voted for the Paycheck Protection Program and Health Care Enhancement Act,” Rep. Rogers said. “This bill will increase the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) by an additional $310 billion. This vital program has helped millions of American workers and businesses get much-needed financial assistance during these challenging times.”
The Paycheck Protection Program ran out of money last week. Republicans blame Democrats for delaying the relief for small businesses.
“This action should’ve been taken over two weeks ago when President Trump requested more money for the PPP, or it could’ve happened last week when the program ran out of money,” Rogers said. “Instead, Speaker Pelosi wasted time with her ridiculous partisan political games. She also played politics with $75 billion for hospitals, including $10 billion specifically for rural hospitals like the ones in my district that are in desperate need.”
Rogers was highly critical of Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi, D-California.
“In the week the Democrats sat on their hands and allowed the PPP to go unfunded, 4.4 million Americans lost their jobs due to the coronavirus pandemic,” Rogers concluded. “As we move forward to reopen our economy and Congress works on the next round of legislation, I call on Speaker Pelosi to put America first and stop playing these partisan political games.”
H.R. 266 replenishes the PPP with $310 billion more for PPP loans. The bill also provides for $30 billion in guaranteed loans for lenders with less than $10 billion in assets, $30 billion in guaranteed loans for lenders with $10 billion to $50 billion in assets, and provides an additional $10 billion for Emergency Economic Injury Disaster grants.
The bill also appropriates an additional $50 billion for Disaster Loans Program Account and allows agricultural enterprises with not more than 500 employees to receive EIDL and lost revenue. Democrats ask for, and got $75 billion in reimbursement to hospitals and health care providers to support the need for COVID-19 related expenses and lost revenue; and provides $25 billion for necessary expenses to research, develop, Validate, manufacture, purchase, administer, and expand capacity for COVID-19 tests.
The White House responded to passage in a statement:
“Within the next 24 hours, President Trump will be sending more help their way. After unnecessary delay from Speaker Nancy Pelosi and House Democrats, Congress is finally replenishing President Trump’s Paycheck Protection Program (PPP). Operated by the Small Business Administration, the PPP ensures that employers can continue to pay workers and cover costs during the global Coronavirus outbreak. The program proved essential for small businesses—so popular, in fact, that it ran through its funds in just 14 days. After pressure from President Trump, Congress reached a deal with the Administration to provide an additional $310 billion for the program, along with $75 billion for hospitals and $25 billion for testing. More relief for America’s small businesses can’t wait a moment longer.”
As of press time 886,709 Americans have been diagnosed with COVID-19. 50.242 of them have died in this global pandemic. Government has implemented a forced economic shutdown in order to slow the spread of the disease.
Rogers serves as Ranking Member on the Committee on Homeland Security and is a senior member of the House Armed Services Committee. He is serving in his tenth term representing Alabama’s Third Congressional District.