New round of small business relief hits web troubles

Lenders across the U.S. reported a second straight day of computer glitches as they tried to secure small business loans under the government's Paycheck Protection Program, as small business owners around the nation were left hoping they would be able to access some of the over $300 billion in aid approved last week by Congress and the President.

"I applied on the first round and nothing," said Eric Parkhill, who runs a medical firm in North Carolina.

"Hoping for the best," said Kimberly Gaddis, who owns a legal firm in Atlanta, Georgia, with six employees.

But with many interested businesses and lenders, the computer system for the Small Business Administration was swamped on Monday - and again on Tuesday morning.

"I heard there was a glitch," President Trump said on Monday.

And even if lenders and business owners are successful in getting through the system, lawmakers say the extra $320 billion in funds made available by the Congress last week are unlikely to last very long.

"The demand for PPP loans far exceeds the supply of dollars," Sen. Marco Rubio (R-FL) said Tuesday on Fox Business. "I just want to be frank and honest about it."

There was also more controversy over who was getting the federal relief aid, as Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin joined a chorus of voices in blasting the idea that the Los Angeles Lakers of the NBA would get money meant for small businesses.

“Any loan for over $2 million will have a full review,” Mnuchin vowed at the White House on Tuesday, as he acknowledged criticism about small business aid going to the NBA and other larger firms like Ruth's Chris Steak House, Shake Shack, and other big restaurant chains - even though some of those companies ultimately returned the aid..

"It sure would be nice to get some assistance even if I am not a multi million dollar corporation," said Kevin Cheek, who runs a cabinet refinishing business in Atlanta.

"We are hoping that we will hear something positive now that the funds have been replenished," said Betsy Goldsberry Ball, who runs a European travel group.

"If I don’t get help soon, I will have to shut my business down within the next few weeks," said Bruce McGehee, who runs a national lodging business that caters to airline pilots and flight attendants.

Others were resigned to the fact that they just weren't going to get help from the feds.

"My situation should be the definition of a "small business" yet we fall through the cracks and get NO help at all," said Eddie Bruce, who runs the RocknShop music store in Cartersville, Georgia.

Maybe the only silver lining for Bruce - is that he's re-opening his store for limited hours this week.

Jamie Dupree

Jamie Dupree, CMG Washington News Bureau

Radio News Director of the Washington Bureau