U.S. Senator Marco Rubio, R-Fla., the chairman of the U.S. Senate Small Business and Entrepreneurship Committee, is backing U.S. Sen. Ted Cruz’s, R-Texas, proposal to include local chamber of commerce in the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP).
Rubio’s office insisted that local chambers “provide valuable resources to small businesses across the country, and Destination Marketing Organizations (DMOs), which play an important role in creating a vibrant tourism industry.” U.S. Sen. Tim Scott, R-SC, is also backing the proposal.
“The Paycheck Protection Program has helped millions of small businesses and nonprofits across a wide range of industries endure the coronavirus pandemic,” Rubio said on Thursday. “It is critical that nonprofits designed to support the economic success of local communities survive, including chambers of commerce and destination-based organizations that promote tourism. I am proud to work with my colleagues to address this eligibility issue and help these organizations whose mission is to help our small businesses and the travel industry.”
“In Texas alone, roughly half of all small businesses belong to their local chamber of commerce, and the members of more than 6,500 chambers across the country are in urgent need of the services these organizations provide,” Cruz said. “Hundreds of small businesses and communities also rely on tourism – which has been decimated during this pandemic. The Paycheck Protection Program has been an enormous success, and I’m hopeful the Senate will move swiftly to pass this bill to equip even more job creators with the resources they need to grow their way out of this economic crisis and get the American people back to work.”
“Small businesses are the backbone of our country and today, more than ever, they need our help to survive this pandemic and put Americans back on the pathway to jobs and economic wellness,” Scott said. “As a former small business owner, I know how vital small businesses are for our local economies. This legislation would expand this critical program to our non-profits and Chambers of Commerce that offer the important infrastructure in our communities by providing valuable resources to local businesses. As a tourism destination state, South Carolina would not only benefit from the expansion of these loans, but the state would also continue to provide employment for hardworking families during this time. I want to thank my Senate colleagues for understanding the importance of this program and working to ensure that the folks back home are not left behind.”
Cruz introduced the bill on Wednesday. It was sent to the Small Business Committee. So far, there is no companion measure over in the U.S. House.
Reach Kevin Derby at firstname.lastname@example.org.