WASHINGTON—U.S. Senator John Cornyn (R-TX) released the following statement after the Senate passed the Paycheck Protection Program and Health Care Enhancement Act today:
“The first and most important thing we should do is defeat this virus, and then we need to get our economy back on track so people can go back to work,” said Sen. Cornyn. “We knew this was a very popular program, and it seemed to be working the way we intended by keeping people connected to their employer. But there’s more demand than we prepared for, so that’s why it’s important we acted quickly.”
The Paycheck Protection Program was established in the CARES Act, which the Senate passed last month, and which had given out its initial $349 billion in grants and loans on Thursday. Nearly 135,000 Texas small businesses, more than any other state, received nearly $28.5 billion of the initial funding.
Sen. Cornyn’s support for this fourth coronavirus relief bill comes after more than 50 statewide outreach calls with chambers of commerce, hospitals, healthcare workers, and other Texans, which he began on March 6.
The Paycheck Protection Program & Health Care Enhancement Act
- Revitalizes the Paycheck Protection Program:
- Injects more than $320 billion for the Paycheck Protection Program
- Certifies that agricultural enterprises that have received USDA assistance are still eligible for the Paycheck Protection Program
- Increases Funding for Emergency Injury Disaster Loans:
- Allots an additional $10 billion for advance payments of up to $10,000 for small businesses
- Provides $50 billion for EIDL loans for small businesses
- Clarifies that agricultural enterprises are eligible for EIDL loans and grants.
- Boosts our country’s health care in response to the coronavirus:
- Allocates an additional $75 billion for hospitals and health care providers, in addition to the $70 billion remaining in the current fund from the CARES Act
- Provides $25 billion for COVID-19 testing, including $11 billion for state and local governments and $14 billion for federal agencies
- Requires a strategic plan for assisting states and increasing testing capacity
Sen. Cornyn’s website has additional resources for Texans during the coronavirus outbreak here.