Small Business Relief Programs Run Out of Funding

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A fast food restaurant worker fills an order as a vehicle waits in the drive-thru pickup lane in Los Angeles. (Frederic J. Brown /AFP via Getty Images)

Small businesses throughout the country are struggling to stay afloat amid the coronavirus pandemic. One of the biggest relief programs, known as the Payroll Protection Program, blew through $350 billion in federal aid within a matter of weeks. More than 1.6 million U.S. businesses secured loans through the program, but thousands were left empty handed. As Congress debates an injection of new funding, critics say the first round of money went to many larger companies, even publicly traded corporations, as opposed to mom-and-pop operations on the brink of bankruptcy. Meanwhile, state and local governments, as well as nonprofits and companies, are stepping up with programs to help. We talk to experts about the many challenges small business owners are facing and available resources.


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Julie Clowes, San Francisco district director, U.S. Small Business Administration

Adam Sterling, executive director, Berkeley Center for Law and Business at the University of California, Berkeley, Law School

Bob Davis, senior editor, Wall Street Journal

Joaquin Torres, director, Office of Economic and Workforce Development, City and County of San Francisco


Gusto Payroll Protection Program application tool