The National Federation of Independent Business (NFIB), the nation’s leading small business advocacy organization, issued a “Legislative Plan for Small Business Survival,” today, that included ten prescriptive recommendations to help ensure more small businesses survive the coronavirus crisis and more quickly return to normal business operations once restrictions are lessened.
“Small businesses, which account for half of the American economy and nearly half of all jobs, are fighting for their survival every day that this crisis continues. Efforts by the Administration and Congress, while well intentioned, have been met with significant challenges to this point,” said NFIB President Brad Close. “There are lessons to be learned, however, and this plan provides several clear and actionable steps for Congress to take that will help give small businesses a fighting chance.”
The plan includes recommendations for improving the Paycheck Protection Program and Economic Injury Disaster Loan program, ending costly mandates, and making regulatory compliance simpler. These recommendations include:
Extend Paycheck Protection Program and Make Sure the Smallest Employers Get Help.
Increase flexibility for forgivable loan terms in the Paycheck Protection Program.
Prohibit Discrimination Against Small Employers in the Paycheck Protection Program.
End the Costly COVID-19 Mandates on Small Businesses for Paid Sick Leave and Extended Family and Medical Leave on May 31, 2020.
Fully Fund the COVID-19 Economic Injury Disaster Loan Program and Improve the Related Grant Program.
Recognize the Limits to the Ability of Small Businesses to Learn of and Comply with Laws and Regulations.
Tapered Transition Out of Programs After COVID-19 No Longer Represents a Significant Threat to Public Health.
Narrowly-tailor Any New Requirements Related to the Reopening to Account for the Realities of Different Industries and Business Sizes.
Require Each Agency to Conduct a Regulatory Look-Back Review.
Statement of Policy from Congress on the Future of Small Businesses.
“As Congress debates the next steps for providing funding for small businesses, it is crucial they do it in a manner that truly aids the smaller firms in this country. These are the ones that faced the most challenges accessing PPP and disaster loans, something we can’t afford to let happen again,” Close concluded.