The Windham Region Chamber of Commerce has been advocating for small businesses NON-STOP through the pandemic. We have joined coalitions all across the country. We are not stopping. We believe the government should offer grants for small business WITHOUT RESTRICTIONS so that the business can best decide how to help their own company. Here is a letter we sent to Congress..
Dear Members of Congress:
The COVID-19 pandemic has left America’s small businesses and entrepreneurs on the brink of collapse through no fault of our own. Having reached the grim one-year anniversary of the COVID-19 pandemic shutting down the U.S., we continue to struggle to keep our doors open. While the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) and the Economic Injury Disaster Loans (EIDL) provided a crucial lifeline for many businesses, the programs’ rollout, technical errors, and restrictive loan parameters caused many small businesses—especially newer businesses and under-resourced communities—to fall through the cracks. This is why we still need more robust and unrestricted direct grant support.
With each day that passes, funding and relief dries up and we are left to continue to figure out how to keep our employees paid and our doors open. And we’re not alone–40% of small business owners recently reported they will need no-cost grants or zero interest loans this year to keep their business open.
That is why we are calling on Congress to provide more grant funding—because only we can determine how best to utilize the funding to keep our businesses open. This has strong support among other small businesses, with 91% of small businesses saying they want Congress to pass legislation authorizing direct grants. New grant programs for live venues and restaurants were a step in the right direction, but funding for both is likely to run out quickly. It is critical that you immediately pass a substantive and unrestricted grant program to support all of our small businesses.