Rep. Welch Returns to Washington To Support $484 Billion Package for Small Businesses and Hospitals Devastated by Coronavirus Pandemic
WASHINGTON – Rep. Peter Welch returned to Washington, D.C. yesterday to vote for the latest COVID-19 pandemic relief legislation. The House passed the $484 billion package with an overwhelming 388-5 bipartisan vote, which replenishes funds for the Paycheck Protection Program, increases aid for hospitals caring for the sick, and expands nationwide testing capacity.
“It was critical to pass this legislation to restart the small businesses assistance programs, which help our Vermont businesses during their time of need,” said Welch. “I am pleased that we were also able to provide important aid for our hospitals struggling on the front lines of the pandemic response. More work must be done, but this was an important stopgap to help Vermonters cope with this disease that continues to devastate our communities.”
The Paycheck Protection Program and Health Care Enhancement Act (H.R. 266) provides:
- $310 billion for the Small Business Administration’s (SBA) Paycheck Protection Program.
- $60 billion for SBA Economic Injury Disaster Loans (EIDL).
- $75 billion for hospitals and healthcare providers.
- $25 billion for increased testing capacity.
Nearly 7,000 Vermont businesses have been approved for over $1 billion in loans through the Paycheck Protection Program, the third highest per capita rate in the country.
The Senate passed the bill earlier this week and the president is expected to sign it into law today.