Following passage by the U.S. Senate on Tuesday, the House of Representatives today overwhelmingly passed the Paycheck Protection and Healthcare Enhancement Act by a vote of 388 to 5, infusing a reported $320 billion in additional funding into the Small Business Administration’s Paycheck Protection Program (PPP). President Trump has indicated that he will sign the legislation into law.
PPP is a lending program created to help small employers retain employees on their payrolls during the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic and resulting economic emergency. In addition to providing additional funding for the small business loan program, the legislation also provides new funding for hospitals dealing with the immediate effects of the pandemic, and—specifically—for enhanced COVID-19 testing.
PPP loans, which, under certain conditions, may be forgiven, can be used not only for employee wages and salaries, but also to fund employee retirement and health benefits.