Loans – With Ariane http://withariane.com/ Fri, 11 Jun 2021 21:04:24 +0000 en-US hourly 1 https://wordpress.org/?v=5.7.2 https://withariane.com/wp-content/uploads/2021/05/default1.png Loans – With Ariane http://withariane.com/ 32 32 Did Emergency PPP Loans Work? Nearly $800 Billion Later, We Still Don’t Know https://withariane.com/did-emergency-ppp-loans-work-nearly-800-billion-later-we-still-dont-know/ https://withariane.com/did-emergency-ppp-loans-work-nearly-800-billion-later-we-still-dont-know/#respond Fri, 14 May 2021 10:41:08 +0000 https://withariane.com/?p=624 When the pandemic hit last year, Andrew Leckie, who runs half a dozen restaurants and a catering company in Edmonds, Wash., was forced to lay off more than 200 employees. Demand for his oysters and craft cocktails had dried up and his businesses were in trouble until a program intended to provide emergency loans for […]]]>

When the pandemic hit last year, Andrew Leckie, who runs half a dozen restaurants and a catering company in Edmonds, Wash., was forced to lay off more than 200 employees.

Demand for his oysters and craft cocktails had dried up and his businesses were in trouble until a program intended to provide emergency loans for people with bad credit.

“I don’t think there’s any way we would have been able to withstand the financial challenges that existed without this money,” Leckie says.

Taking advantage of the loans provided by the federal government’s Paycheck Protection Program (PPP), he was gradually able to rehire about three-quarters of his workforce.

The Paycheck Protection Program, first passed early in the pandemic as part of the CARES Act, was meant to provide loans to help small-business owners like Leckie keep workers on the payroll. Businesses wouldn’t have to pay the money back as long as they used most of the loan proceeds to pay staff.

But despite plenty of success stories like Leckie’s, there’s little consensus on how many paychecks it actually protected, a question that lingers as the PPP is due to wind down in coming weeks after it depletes all of its available funds.

The program, after several extensions passed by Congress, guaranteed more than 10 million loans to small businesses during the pandemic at a cost of more than $770 billion so far.

The Small Business Administration oversaw the program, and initial demand was overwhelming. The first $350 billion Congress set aside for loans was snapped up in less than two weeks.

But it was hit by controversies from the start. People were outraged when wealthy and well-connected outfits like the burger chain Shake Shack and the Los Angeles Lakers basketball team got loans, while others were left on the sidelines. Some big borrowers were shamed into giving the money back.

The Justice Department has also brought more than 100 criminal cases alleging fraud against the program. In its push to get money out the door quickly, the Small Business Administration approved more than 2 million loans that were later flagged as potentially problematic.

“The scale of this program is so beyond anything the Small Business Administration has had to run previously, it’s mind-blowing,” says Sean Moulton of the watchdog group Project on Government Oversight.

“How well did it work? I don’t think anyone has a good answer to that question,” he adds.

Economists have also raised questions about whether the loans actually kept workers on the job or simply subsidized businesses that would have been open anyway.

“We really underestimated the ability of lots of not-in-person service businesses to not only continue doing what they’re doing, but even do more of it,” says economist John Friedman of Brown University. “As a result of that, a lot of PPP money went to firms that were in fact not really that affected by the pandemic.”

Friedman and his colleagues estimate that in its first four months, the loan program actually saved only about 1.5 million jobs — at a cost of about $377,000 each.

Michael Faulkender, who as assistant Treasury secretary for economic policy in the Trump administration helped craft the loan program, argues that it played a much larger role, helping to save more than 18 million jobs during its early months.

“I think relative to how devastating things could have been, PPP was extraordinarily successful,” Faulkender says.

Faulkender argues that without the loan program, even more people would have been dumped into the unemployment system, which was already overwhelmed by millions of laid-off workers seeking benefits.

A survey by the Federal Reserve last year found 82% of small employers applied for a PPP loan, and 77% of those who applied received all the money they asked for. Nearly half of those firms still reduced the number of workers they employed.

But layoffs were even more common among companies that didn’t get PPP loans. What’s more, employers that got a loan were more likely to rehire workers who had been laid off.

Faulkender stresses that the program was originally designed as a kind of economic lifeboat — to keep workers and businesses afloat and together for what was expected to be a brief shutdown, lasting perhaps two months.

Of course, the pandemic has dragged on much longer than that, but despite the doubts, there are plenty of success stories.

Andray Hall credits a PPP loan with keeping his New Jersey kitchen cabinet company afloat during a period when no one wanted strangers taking measurements inside their home.

“For me, it’s about the people,” Hall said. “The company, we can survive it, but the people, if they fall, it’s hard to get back up.”

Or take Leckie. His business partner improvised a takeout menu that included barbecue and fried chicken. They added outdoor verandas to the restaurants, with plastic protection against the wind and rain.

And after taking advantage of two rounds of PPP loans, he’s still in business.

“I just feel as though it’s been a blessing that we’re able to still be standing today,” he said. “And I think the PPP has played a big part in that.”

]]>
https://withariane.com/did-emergency-ppp-loans-work-nearly-800-billion-later-we-still-dont-know/feed/ 0
As Coronavirus Spread, State Department Evacuated Over 100,000 Americans Abroad https://withariane.com/as-coronavirus-spread-state-department-evacuated-over-100000-americans-abroad/ https://withariane.com/as-coronavirus-spread-state-department-evacuated-over-100000-americans-abroad/#respond Fri, 14 May 2021 09:19:38 +0000 https://withariane.com/?p=612 U.S. Embassy staff based in Podgorica, the capital of Montenegro, coordinated with the governments of Montenegro, Bosnia and Herzegovina and Germany to organize flights to return 53 U.S. citizens and residents home from Montenegro. (Photo: U.S. Embassy Podgorica, Montenegro) In late May, President Trump issued an order banning entry for all travelers coming from Brazil, […]]]>

U.S. Embassy staff based in Podgorica, the capital of Montenegro, coordinated with the governments of Montenegro, Bosnia and Herzegovina and Germany to organize flights to return 53 U.S. citizens and residents home from Montenegro. (Photo: U.S. Embassy Podgorica, Montenegro)

In late May, President Trump issued an order banning entry for all travelers coming from Brazil, a country where the number of COVID-19 cases is second only to that of the United States. In response, the U.S. Embassy in Brasília urged Americans to leave the country immediately.

“As this crisis has unfolded, things have developed very quickly. That being said, if returning to the U.S. is something that you and your family want to do, our official advice is to do it now. Now means as soon as possible,” one consular official said during a virtual town hall organized by the embassy. “Now means now.”

This was just one of the many examples of how hundreds of U.S. consular officials around the world have snapped into action to bring home more than 100,000 Americans traveling or living abroad in more than 130 countries (as of mid-June) as the COVID-19 pandemic swept the globe.

U.S. Embassy staff in Cameroon assist over 400 U.S. citizens in returning home on two chartered repatriation flights on March 31 and April 7. After a slow start, the State Department has helped bring home more than 100,000 Americans traveling or living abroad in more than 130 countries in the wake of the coronavirus pandemic. (Photo: State Department)

The large-scale effort even inspired a new virtual exhibit at the National Museum of American Diplomacy called “Bringing #AmericansHome.” Since the country’s founding, one video says, U.S. diplomats have worked to repatriate shipwrecked American sailors, protect the cargo of U.S. merchants in foreign ports, settle the estates of Americans who have died abroad, evacuate Americans from countries experiencing political unrest — and, now, secure safe passage home for Americans in the face of a fast-moving pandemic.

The COVID-19 repatriation effort has become one of the rare bright spots coming out of a State Department battered by bad press and low morale ever since Trump came to office. Most recently, that includes the resignation of a top State Department official over the president’s handling of racial tensions across the country — a reflection of longstanding complaints over a lack of diversity at Foggy Bottom.

Yet even when it came to the massive campaign to bring Americans home in the wake of the coronavirus pandemic, the State Department initially got mostly negative reviews.

Various outlets reported harrowing stories of Americans left confused and stranded abroad, especially as travel restrictions came down, flights became scarce and U.S. consular officials were quickly overwhelmed.

According to a March 25 article in Politico by Sam Mintz, some Americans “turned to alternatives like risky border crossings from Guatemala into Mexico — including bringing along enough money to potentially pay off customs officials — and chartering a jet flown by a private security firm staffed by former military and intelligence officers.”

Among those stranded was Melissa Uribe, a pregnant woman in Guatemala who was in need of medical attention. After she finally secured a commercial flight, the State Department notified her that she had been selected for a State-chartered flight, but she told Politico that she did not trust the department after its poor communication and returned home to California on her own.

In one well-publicized incident, American tourists and other foreigners in Peru said authorities doused them with an unknown chemical after imposing a quarantine on their hostel in April. (Several Americans infected with the virus were eventually flown back on a State Department medevac plane.)

Many Democrats said the lack of preparedness was part of a larger pattern in an administration that ignored the urgency of the pandemic in those critical first few weeks and months.

“While the scale of the pandemic may not have been entirely predictable, if this administration, including Secretary [Mike] Pompeo and his senior leadership team, had taken the coronavirus threat seriously and planned ahead, we may have been able to avoid some of the confusion and chaos Americans abroad encountered in their efforts to return home,” Sen. Bob Menendez (D-N.J.) said in a statement. “Unfortunately, that simply did not happen. As a result, the State Department now has to try to catch up and make up for lost time.”

Even some Republicans voiced frustration with the Republican administration’s response.

The hashtag #AmericansStuckInPeru “is due to lack of urgency” by some mid-level State Department employees, Sen. Marco Rubio (R-Fla.) tweeted in March. “We didn’t need you to ‘track’ this, we needed you to solve this.”

That tweet came after an American Airlines plane headed to Lima was forced to turn around because the State Department hadn’t secured permission from the Peruvian government for it to land.

But the incident also illustrates how the State Department has been at times forced to navigate foreign bureaucratic hurdles and negotiate with unresponsive or uncooperative governments. (Politico for instance reported that the Peruvian government was blocking the return of U.S. citizens until it received assurances that its own citizens could leave the U.S.)

American citizens board a Brazzaville-Kinshasa boat shuttle bound for a repatriation flight in the Democratic Republic of the Congo. (Photo: U.S. Embassy Brazzaville, Democratic Republic of Congo)

Some defenders of State’s response point out that many of the Americans who had to be evacuated chose to take a vacation despite explicit State Department travel warnings not to do so.

Other officials say the fast-moving pandemic created a logistical nightmare.

“One of the biggest challenges is simply the unprecedented nature of this pandemic, which led to a sudden shutdown of borders and heightened health risks to travelers in all corners of the globe,” Ian G. Brownlee, principal deputy assistant secretary for consular affairs at the State Department, told The Diplomat in an email.

“Another major challenge was the number of Americans who found themselves in extremely remote areas throughout the world, from the Amazon jungle to the foot of Mount Everest. There was, quite literally, no precedent for ​a global crisis of this magnitude. In some areas, local conditions such as quarantines or remoteness compelled U.S. citizens to shelter in place until the crisis has passed, and we continue to do all we can to help them. A number of U.S. citizens initially expressed interest in repatriation assistance and have since decided to remain in place overseas. That said, we successfully repatriated the overwhelming majority of U.S. citizens who wanted to return to the United States.”

In fact, while it may have been initially caught off guard, the State Department has since been widely praised for its repatriation efforts — even by those who had been among its harshest critics in Congress.

On June 12, the Senate unanimously passed a bipartisan resolution praising State Department officials for their work to bring Americans home. The resolution was introduced by Menendez, the ranking Democrat on the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, along with Jim Risch (R-Idaho), the committee’s chair.

“Every day for the past six months of the COVID-19 pandemic, the American people have been reminded of the exemplary capabilities of our career diplomacy and development professionals. Even during the most trying circumstances — and this pandemic has been that — they rise to the challenge of serving our nation and protecting the American people,” said Menendez.

But the New Jersey Democrat’s praise for State Department staff did not rise to the leadership level.

“The lack of preparedness and planning by the Trump administration for repatriations of this scale did not stop our nation’s career civil service and foreign service professionals from bravely tackling an unprecedented challenge, even if it meant sacrificing their own health to protect their fellow Americans,” Menendez said in a statement when the resolution was introduced on May 21.

Still, Congress’s general support for career officials at State has not gone unnoticed by those officials.

“We are grateful for all of the expressions of gratitude, and for the strong support of Congress. Our priority at the State Department remains the safety and welfare of U.S. citizens overseas, and we will do all we can to keep American travelers informed and safe,” Brownlee said.

The State Department launched its Repatriation Task Force on March 19. Among the Americans who were evacuated immediately were State’s own employees — including those stuck in Wuhan, China, the epicenter of the pandemic at the start of the year.

The removal of State Department employees abroad also complicated efforts on the ground to repatriate Americans, although many U.S. consular officials and diplomats stayed to help, scrambling to arrange not only flights but also boats and buses to whisk Americans out of COVID-19 hotspots.

“In addition to organizing repatriation flights and helping U.S. citizens get to the airport to get on these flights, we are regularly updating U.S. citizens overseas on the latest options to depart, helping U.S. citizens find commercial flight options where available, and providing repatriation loans to manage the up-front payment of costs of commercial flights,” Brownlee, who spearheaded the 24/7 effort, told us.

The State Department cannot waive the costs of international travel or help defray people’s expenses, which can be high. But it does offer loans to Americans for the purpose of returning home. Those who take out a loan, however, will not be able receive a new U.S. passport until it is paid back.

“By law, the State Department charges a median full-fare price for the planes it charters, and commercial carriers are hiking up costs to make up for flying with sometimes near-empty planes. If Americans don’t repay the promissory notes, legally binding IOUs that they sign before boarding the flights, by U.S. law, they risk not being issued a new passport,” Kimberly Dozier reported for TIME on April 20.

For one American, Natalie Kosloff, a U.N. peacekeeper deployed to the Democratic Republic of Congo, the State Department paid $3,500 for her to fly on a U.K. Embassy flight to Washington by way of London — the costs of which she must pay back. Kosloff “estimates the whole experience will have cost her around $10,000 out of pocket,” according to the TIME article.

This is not unlike some other countries’ emergency procedures for helping their citizens return home. The U.K., for instance, urged its citizens to fly commercial where air carriers were still operating. In places where commercial airlines had grounded flights, the U.K. set up a £75 million program to charter flights, with the funds meant to “keep the costs down” for travelers booking the private flights.

British citizens were expected to “book and pay directly through a dedicated travel management company,” as U.K. Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab announced.

U.S. Ambassador to Malawi Robert Scott is seen greeting passengers at Kamuzu International Airport in the Malawian capital of Lilongwe. A Boeing 787-800 operated by Ethiopian Airlines departed on April 24 from the airport with 74 American citizens. The flight was the first of its kind in Malawi since airspace closed on April 1 in the wake of the coronavirus pandemic. (Photo: U.S. Embassy Lilongwe, Malawi)

While Congress has generally praised the State Department for ramping up its repatriation strategy, some members are still urging a review of “lessons learned” from the crisis.

Rep. Eliot Engel (D-N.Y.), chair of the House Committee on Foreign Affairs, sent a letter to Secretary of State Mike Pompeo requesting information about repatriation efforts.

Among the information House members wanted was a list of all COVID-19-related repatriation flights, specifying whether each flight was a State Department-funded charter or a commercial charter; a list of instances in which other agencies’ air assets were used or requested; an “estimate of potential new hotspots around the world” where repatriation efforts could be needed in the future; and an accounting of how the State Department used any funds from the CARES Act, the emergency spending relief bill Congress passed and Trump signed on March 27.

Neither Engel nor the committee’s ranking minority member, Michael McCaul (R-Texas), returned repeated requests for comment.

While the Senate resolution commended the State Department, it also urged officials to continue to help stranded Americans.

On that note, Brownlee, speaking at a May 5 briefing for reporters, said his office’s work isn’t done.

“While demand is in decline, we haven’t applied the brakes yet…. As long as there are U.S. citizens in a country, we’ll do everything we can to make sure that they know their options so they’ll know whether to get on the next flight out, if there is one, or whether they’ll need to shelter in place for some time,” he said.

“From a Washington perspective, we’ve run the U.S. government-chartered repatriation flights with an eye to an eventual finish line. That said, we still don’t have a hard end date. That will be dictated by need, and we will continue to assess closely conditions on a country-by-country basis,” he added.

“But to bang on the drum I’ve been banging on since the beginning, U.S. citizens who are thinking of coming back need to act now.”

That warning comes as countries such as Brazil continue to struggle with a surge in cases, which are also popping up in countries such as South Korea and Singapore that were once believed to have contained the virus.

It also comes as experts warn of a possible second wave of the coronavirus this fall — coupled with the administration’s muddled messaging.

While Vice President Mike Pence argued that “there isn’t a coronavirus ‘second wave’” in a Wall Street Journal op-ed, others in the administration have signaled that they are already preparing for one.

“We are filling the stockpile in anticipation of a possible problem in the fall. We are doing everything we can beneath the surface, working as hard as we possibly can,” White House trade adviser Peter Navarro told CNN on June 21.

Meanwhile, President Trump has sought to downplay the virus even as wide swaths of the U.S. have seen the number of coronavirus cases skyrocket, with nearly 130,000 American deaths as of this printing. Despite the dramatic spike, the president has gone ahead with controversial rallies that defy the very social distancing measures that experts say are necessary to contain outbreaks.

Regardless of what happens next, Americans are much less likely to travel in the near future. According to one survey, only 56% of U.S. adults would be willing to travel on a commercial flight even 60 days after experts declare it safe to travel again.

That may come as a small relief to the State Department officials who’d be tasked with bringing those travelers back home in the event of yet another emergency.

Anna Gawel (@diplomatnews) is the managing editor of The Washington Diplomat.

]]>
https://withariane.com/as-coronavirus-spread-state-department-evacuated-over-100000-americans-abroad/feed/ 0
Congress moves closer to emergency relief deal, including direct payments and additional unemployment benefits https://withariane.com/congress-moves-closer-to-emergency-relief-deal-including-direct-payments-and-additional-unemployment-benefits/ https://withariane.com/congress-moves-closer-to-emergency-relief-deal-including-direct-payments-and-additional-unemployment-benefits/#respond Wed, 24 Mar 2021 07:52:08 +0000 https://withariane.com/congress-moves-closer-to-emergency-relief-deal-including-direct-payments-and-additional-unemployment-benefits/ WASHINGTON – A coronavirus relief deal appears to be within reach after months of deadlock in Congress, potentially providing much-needed help to Americans facing the expiration of unemployment benefits and to states distributing the new COVID-19 vaccine. But CNN Reports that Senate Majority Whip John Thune (RS.D.) said it was possible that a brief government […]]]>

WASHINGTON – A coronavirus relief deal appears to be within reach after months of deadlock in Congress, potentially providing much-needed help to Americans facing the expiration of unemployment benefits and to states distributing the new COVID-19 vaccine. But CNN Reports that Senate Majority Whip John Thune (RS.D.) said it was possible that a brief government shutdown could occur over the weekend, as it might be difficult to pass an interim spending bill before the midnight Friday deadline.

Wisconsin Examiner is part of States Newsroom, a grant-supported media network and donor coalition as a 501c (3) public charity. Wisconsin Examiner maintains editorial independence. Contact editor Ruth Conniff with any questions: info@wisconsinexaminer.com. Follow Wisconsin Examiner on Facebook and Twitter.

]]>
https://withariane.com/congress-moves-closer-to-emergency-relief-deal-including-direct-payments-and-additional-unemployment-benefits/feed/ 0
Keeping the pressure on the government to be open and accountable https://withariane.com/keeping-the-pressure-on-the-government-to-be-open-and-accountable/ https://withariane.com/keeping-the-pressure-on-the-government-to-be-open-and-accountable/#respond Wed, 24 Mar 2021 07:52:08 +0000 https://withariane.com/keeping-the-pressure-on-the-government-to-be-open-and-accountable/ The citizens of a democracy should know what their government is doing, but politicians, bureaucrats and judges too often decide otherwise. This is why federal and state laws guaranteeing public access to government meetings and documents are so important. This week, media groups, libraries, educational institutions and even the US government are calling attention to […]]]>

The citizens of a democracy should know what their government is doing, but politicians, bureaucrats and judges too often decide otherwise. This is why federal and state laws guaranteeing public access to government meetings and documents are so important.

This week, media groups, libraries, educational institutions and even the US government are calling attention to the importance of transparency in an annual celebration called “Sunshine Week.” The event was started in 2005 by the American Society of News Editors, now known as the News Leaders Association. (Sewell Chan, Los Angeles Times editorial page editor, is a member of the organization’s board of directors.)

The past year has been marked by some celebratory victories. For example, a coalition of news agencies filed a federal Freedom of Information Act request last year to identify recipients of taxpayer-funded assistance under a loan program. emergency for small businesses. After the Trump administration released an amended list, a federal judge ordered the Small Business Administration to provide the rest of the details.

In addition, courts and government agencies have compensated for disruption related to COVID-19 by providing virtual access to proceedings, making it easy to view but not always participate. The United States Supreme Court has become even more transparent, live streaming oral arguments conducted over the phone. (He should continue to broadcast live when he returns to the in-person arguments.) And federal officials responsible for responding to access to information requests have received remote training on how to handle hundreds of thousands of cases. requests.

These are welcome developments. But it is still too easy for government officials to frustrate the legitimate public interest in the functioning of government, despite the existence of laws designed to ensure transparency.

Chief among these is the Freedom of Information Act enacted by President Lyndon Johnson in 1966 and significantly strengthened in 2016. At an event hosted by Sunshine Week at the Justice Department on Monday, the Attorney General Merrick Garland said that “a loyal FOIA administration is essential for American Democracy.

He is right, but the law does not always keep its promise of transparency. In a March 11 letter to Garland, the Journalists’ Committee for Press Freedom and the Knight First Amendment Institute complained that the law had been “hampered by high rates of deference, increased delays in responding to requests and, consequently, a significant increase in the number of lawsuits against federal agencies. The letter urged the Justice Department to “take swift and decisive action to ensure compliance with the FOIA.”

Slow responses to requests aren’t the only problem. Exemptions in the law allow agencies to withhold documents for a variety of subjective reasons, including concerns about national security, individual privacy, and internal government deliberations.

With some requests, furthermore, federal agencies may refuse to confirm or deny that a requested document even exists. The law also contains “exclusions” for certain criminal justice and national security matters, meaning they are not subject to FOIA at all. Withholding certain sensitive information, such as the identity of a confidential informant, may be appropriate, but non-disclosure should be the exception, not the rule.

The state of California is more committed to transparency than the federal government, at least on paper. In 2004, voters amended the state constitution to include the people’s right to “access to information concerning the conduct of the affairs of the people”. And in 2018, the legislature approved SB 1421, which allows the public to view records involving police misconduct and serious use of force under the state’s public records law.

Some law enforcement agencies, however, have dragged their feet to comply. The LA Times sued Los Angeles County, alleging that the sheriff’s department has repeatedly refused to release public files on deputies involved in misconduct or shootings. This is one of the many cases in which this newspaper, sometimes joined by other news outlets, has gone to court to demand information that the public has a right to see on issues ranging from possible misconduct of police to allegations of sexual abuse and harassment during immigration detention. centers.

So-called “sun” laws can be further improved to make it more difficult for officials to hide their decisions in secrecy. For example, State Senator Nancy Skinner, D-Berkeley, author of SB 1421, proposed new legislation that would give the public access to additional records of police misconduct and impose fines on agencies. who would not have responded in a timely manner.

At the federal level, Congress should require members of the judiciary to be more open about their financial affairs, including the gifts they receive in connection with speaking engagements and the reimbursement of travel expenses.

But no matter what the law says, some government agencies will prefer to operate in the shadows. That is why the government must be pressed to be transparent and accountable not only during Sun Week, but every day of the year.

– Los Angeles Times

]]>
https://withariane.com/keeping-the-pressure-on-the-government-to-be-open-and-accountable/feed/ 0
Cashless Florida Small Business Emergency Bridge Loan Program | Jax Daily Record | Jacksonville Daily Record https://withariane.com/cashless-florida-small-business-emergency-bridge-loan-program-jax-daily-record-jacksonville-daily-record/ https://withariane.com/cashless-florida-small-business-emergency-bridge-loan-program-jax-daily-record-jacksonville-daily-record/#respond Wed, 24 Mar 2021 07:52:08 +0000 https://withariane.com/cashless-florida-small-business-emergency-bridge-loan-program-jax-daily-record-jacksonville-daily-record/ Florida’s emergency bridging loan program for small businesses is closed after approving 1,000 of the more than 38,000 applications received since its activation on March 17 due to the COVID-19 outbreak. The Florida Department of Economic Opportunity said on April 14 that the program had reached the $ 50 million allocated to it. The program […]]]>

Florida’s emergency bridging loan program for small businesses is closed after approving 1,000 of the more than 38,000 applications received since its activation on March 17 due to the COVID-19 outbreak.

The Florida Department of Economic Opportunity said on April 14 that the program had reached the $ 50 million allocated to it.

The program has allowed businesses to apply for interest-free loans of up to $ 50,000. After one year, the loans must be repaid at an interest rate of 3.75%.

Florida Small Business Development Center CEO Michael W. Myhre said there are federal options available to businesses.

“We share Governor DeSantis and our partners at the Florida Department of Economic Opportunity in helping small businesses in our state survive and recover from COVID-19,” Myhre said in a press release. “To do this, we are now devoting all of our attention to helping unfunded applicants access and secure the vital federal disaster resources at their disposal. “

Federal business assistance includes the Paycheck Protection Program and the Economic Injury Disaster Loan program, administered by the US Small Business Administration.

The PPP loan comes from the CARES Act and cancels loans if a company keeps all of its employees on the payroll for eight weeks.

The EIDL program allows businesses to apply for an emergency loan advance of $ 10,000 that does not need to be repaid. It also offers loans of up to $ 2 million to meet financial obligations that might have been met had the disaster not occurred. Small businesses can repay the loan at an interest rate of 3.75%.

The Florida SBDC offers professional consultants and disaster specialists to provide free advice to affected businesses to assess their options and help them prepare loan applications.

]]>
https://withariane.com/cashless-florida-small-business-emergency-bridge-loan-program-jax-daily-record-jacksonville-daily-record/feed/ 0
Councilor Banks foils $ 7 million emergency loan https://withariane.com/councilor-banks-foils-7-million-emergency-loan/ https://withariane.com/councilor-banks-foils-7-million-emergency-loan/#respond Wed, 24 Mar 2021 07:52:07 +0000 https://withariane.com/councilor-banks-foils-7-million-emergency-loan/ Potholes: Jackson, Mississippi drivers ply city streets – video In every neighborhood in Jackson, there are streets that need to be fixed. Some are almost impassable while others force drivers to slow down. Sarah Warnock, Clarion Ledger One-time city councilor vote will prevent Jackson from ‘stabilizing’ his ailing IT hardware and billing system as he […]]]>

to play

One-time city councilor vote will prevent Jackson from ‘stabilizing’ his ailing IT hardware and billing system as he struggles to pay off debt and avoid what officials say could lead to a possible take federal control of the system.

A majority of city council on Thursday – despite several concerns – voted for an emergency loan of up to $ 7 million to make immediate improvements to the city’s water meter and billing system.

The 5-1 vote follows a controversial debate between council members and the administration and a warning from Stephen Edds, a lawyer for Butler Snow who is helping the city reconsider its financial options.

“Unless improvements are made to the water and sewer system, it is very unlikely that it will have generated sufficient revenue to debt service payments. Failure to do so would have a huge negative effect on the city itself, ”he said.

Billions of gallons of sewage: 7 years later, Jackson struggles to meet EPA terms

Since the town is under a consent decree, Edds went on to raise the possibility of the EPA puts city in receivership where he would take charge of all financial decisions if it were determined that the city cannot pay its debts.

Councilor Aaron Banks, whose Ward 6 covers south Jackson, was the only no to vote and City Councilor Kenneth Stokes was absent. The banks vote prevented the loan from going through because emergency resolutions require a unanimous vote.

Banks said he made the decision after speaking with several residents in his neighborhood, including a “task force.” He cited previous requests from the Department of Public Works to cover departmental deficits, wondering how this money was spent.

Note of obligations: Moody’s downgrades Jackson over water and sewer issues

The city councilor then accused department head Bob Miller of not being transparent with the public about the city’s water system, and said he was not convinced the additional funding “Would guarantee” a solution.

He asked Miller and the administration officials to give this assurance.

“I will stress that this is a standard that this board has never asked for in any previous decision that has never been made,” Miller said.

“This represents my best professional judgment. It represents our best option to stabilize the system,” he said.

The mayor retaliates against the municipal councilor

Shortly after the vote, Mayor Chokwe Antar Lumumba – in an unusual gesture – summoned the media to a side room at City Hall.

There he accused Banks of “advising” with former city contractors. who are now being sued with Siemens by the city for the incorrect installation of the water meter system.

“This vote was absolutely critical,” began the mayor. “But just one vote from the people who installed the system will prevent us from fixing it.”

Several council members expressed dissatisfaction with the request, but said they saw no other way forward.

Millions of lost revenue: 20,000 unbilled customers cost Jackson

City Councilor Melvin Priester Jr. described the stalemate the city finds itself in, where it needs funds to fix the billing system, but at the same time is counting on increased collections to pay it off.

The counselor compared the situation to a cancer patient.

“This system was cancer for us. The chemo didn’t work. My doctor came up with a plan. Is there a guarantee? No. What I do know is that the adverse consequences of it ‘discontinuation of treatment is horrible. ”

“And until someone shows me another option, it feels like stopping cancer treatment, and honestly, I don’t see any other options,” he said.

City Councilor De’Keither Stamps warned that if this “solution” did not work, it could lead to increased water and sewer rates and property taxes.

Water collection is the key to the city’s financial future

Miller said collections are improving and cited a month-over-month increase for 13 of the past 17 months. But that’s not enough.

Over the past two years, the ministry has borrowed $ 13.5 million from the City’s general fund. Another $ 2.77 million was paid to contractors to fix the system.

Administration officials say this is the price to pay for making improvements to a system that loses more than $ 20 million in water collection per year. Securing these revenues is widely seen as one of the most important financial measures the city can do for its future.

“We have a bad system, period. We have to stabilize it to move forward,” Lumumba said.

“When you lose control of your water, you lose control of your city,” the mayor said.

Contact Justin Vicory at 769-572-1418 or jvicory@gannett.com. To pursue @justinvicory on Twitter.

Approved rescue: A bigger question looms: How will the Jackson Convention Center survive?

]]>
https://withariane.com/councilor-banks-foils-7-million-emergency-loan/feed/ 0
As the new grant program is introduced, the university does not credit the emergency fund https://withariane.com/as-the-new-grant-program-is-introduced-the-university-does-not-credit-the-emergency-fund/ https://withariane.com/as-the-new-grant-program-is-introduced-the-university-does-not-credit-the-emergency-fund/#respond Wed, 24 Mar 2021 07:52:07 +0000 https://withariane.com/as-the-new-grant-program-is-introduced-the-university-does-not-credit-the-emergency-fund/ In 2017, the Emergency Fund met for the first time in a Reg room with a group of no more than six students. Each week for the following year, we set out to create a revolutionary organization, without a plan. At the time, the University’s most popular emergency funding source, the Center for College Student […]]]>

In 2017, the Emergency Fund met for the first time in a Reg room with a group of no more than six students. Each week for the following year, we set out to create a revolutionary organization, without a plan.

At the time, the University’s most popular emergency funding source, the Center for College Student Success (CCSS), only offered emergency loans, and the decision to provide funding was totally arbitrary. . The other major source of funding through the Center for Identity and Inclusion (CII) did not have a website and was largely presumed inactive.

We wanted to be different. First and foremost, we wanted to fund all kinds of student emergencies on campus, and we wanted the funding to be presented as scholarships and not as loans. Second, we wanted to create a transparent system for applying for funding, rather than depending on the discretion of an individual. Most importantly, we wanted to create a fund for the express purpose of funding “political” emergencies, like DACA renewals and abortions.

The process was not easy. For over a year, while building the app and drafting the statutes, we faced significant criticism and obstacles from all sides. Some administrators we met felt that there was not sufficient demand for the Emergency Fund. Others argued that no one would want to ask for a student-run fund. Still others believed that the CCSS loan program was doing enough to provide financial assistance. Finally, the school reluctantly gave us permission to start our fund, on the understanding that we would not receive any institutional support or assistance.

We worked for months to collect every dollar we could. In 2018, we officially opened the fund and quickly realized that we were filling a significant void. As President and Founder of the Emergency Fund, I have worked tirelessly to continue to fundraise so that we don’t have to turn anyone away. Within a year, the Emergency Fund became the premier fundraising organization on campus.

Suddenly, the largely apathetic and contemptuous university administration seemed to understand how important emergency grants are. In the summer of 2018, I was shocked to learn that the CII emergency fund had ended its awkward hiatus; several thousand dollars of funding now exist under the name of Student Emergency Fund. It was so similar to the organization that we worked tirelessly to create that several students asked if this Student Emergency Fund was the Emergency Fund.

Then, on January 30, 2020, the Office of the Bursar told us that the University of Chicago “now provides students with access to emergency aid funds.” Surprisingly, there is a new website for emergency aid programs, and an online emergency aid application, offering grants in addition to loans!

Seems familiar?

After years of devoting our own work, time and money to filling a vacuum created by the University, the University of Chicago has caught up with what the Emergency Fund has been doing for years. They co-opted our revolutionary model, without any recognition or even thanks to the students who have done their job for years.

This is how things are done at the University of Chicago. Students of color have been fighting for change for years. We are called crazy, authorized or unrealistic. Then, years later, the University co-opts what it has been against for so long. Anyone familiar with the University’s relationship to activism may notice this shameful pattern.

With the University’s immense wealth and institutional power, it probably won’t be long before the Emergency Fund ceases to exist. How long will it take before everyone forgets that the Emergency Fund and the students who supported it were there?

The memory and work of the Emergency Fund may exist for much longer, but it will require fundamental changes in the University’s relationship with activism on campus.

Most importantly, the University should work with students to archive and honor the legacy of student activism and efforts on campus. Memorials honoring successful and transformative student activism should be displayed to the public just as easily as paintings commemorating former university presidents. CARE Executive Slate actually proposed passing a public commemorative plaque honoring student activists to members of the administration earlier in the year. It is only one way for the University to honor the work of the students.

Second, the school should reward and honor successful student activists and student organizations in a public ceremony. The school already offers scholarships to students. A simple but important change would be to create a new award or set of awards specifically for student activists who have been essential in influencing the actions of the University. The Emergency Fund, UChicago United, UChicago Student Action and the new Student Government Health and Welfare Committee are just a few of the organizations that deserve public recognition and celebration from all members of the University. .

Third, the University should financially and institutionally support students and organizations that are successful in lobbying the University for change. In the case of the Emergency Fund, the University should provide money to the Emergency Fund and create a partnership with the organization so that it can remain viable.

The University can and should be innovative in responding to the needs of students, but must do so without trampling on the important work that has been done by students. The best parts of this university are the creations of the students. The least the University can do is honor this work and pay the credit where it is due.

Jahne Brown is a fourth year in college and chair of the student government.

]]>
https://withariane.com/as-the-new-grant-program-is-introduced-the-university-does-not-credit-the-emergency-fund/feed/ 0
Open and responsible | | bedfordgazette.com https://withariane.com/open-and-responsible-bedfordgazette-com/ https://withariane.com/open-and-responsible-bedfordgazette-com/#respond Wed, 24 Mar 2021 07:52:07 +0000 https://withariane.com/open-and-responsible-bedfordgazette-com/ The citizens of a democracy should know what their government is doing, but politicians, bureaucrats and judges too often decide otherwise. This is why federal and state laws guaranteeing public access to government meetings and documents are so important. This week, media groups, libraries, educational institutions and even the US government are calling attention to […]]]>

The citizens of a democracy should know what their government is doing, but politicians, bureaucrats and judges too often decide otherwise. This is why federal and state laws guaranteeing public access to government meetings and documents are so important.

This week, media groups, libraries, educational institutions and even the US government are calling attention to the importance of transparency in an annual celebration called “Sunshine Week.” The event was started in 2005 by the American Society of News Editors, now known as the News Leaders Association. (Sewell Chan, Los Angeles Times editorial page editor, is a member of the organization’s board of directors.)

The past year has been marked by some celebratory victories. For example, a coalition of news agencies filed a federal Freedom of Information Act request last year to identify recipients of taxpayer-funded assistance under a loan program. emergency for small businesses. After the Trump administration released an amended list, a federal judge ordered the Small Business Administration to provide the rest of the details.

Additionally, courts and government agencies have compensated for disruption related to COVID-19 by providing virtual access to proceedings, making it easy to view but not always participate. The United States Supreme Court has become even more transparent, live streaming oral arguments conducted over the phone. (He should continue to broadcast live when he comes back to the arguments in person.)

And federal officials responsible for responding to access to information requests have received remote training on how to handle hundreds of thousands of requests.

These are welcome developments. But it is still too easy for government officials to frustrate the legitimate public interest in the functioning of government, despite the existence of laws designed to ensure transparency.

Chief among these is the Freedom of Information Act enacted by President Lyndon Johnson in 1966 and significantly strengthened in 2016. At an event hosted by Sunshine Week at the Justice Department on Monday, the Attorney General Merrick Garland said that “a loyal FOIA administration is essential for American Democracy.

He is right, but the law does not always keep its promise of transparency. In a March 11 letter to Garland, the Journalists’ Committee for Press Freedom and the Knight First Amendment Institute complained that the law had been “hampered by high rates of deference, increased delays in responding to requests and, as a result, a significant increase in the number of lawsuits against federal agencies. The letter urged the Justice Department to “take swift and decisive action to ensure compliance with the FOIA.”

Slow responses to requests aren’t the only problem. Exceptions in the law allow agencies to withhold material for a variety of subjective reasons, including concerns about national security, privacy, and internal government deliberations.

With some requests, furthermore, federal agencies may refuse to confirm or deny that a requested document even exists. The law also contains “exclusions” for certain criminal justice and national security matters, meaning they are not subject to FOIA at all. Withholding certain sensitive information, such as the identity of a confidential informant, may be appropriate, but non-disclosure should be the exception, not the rule.

The state of California is more committed to transparency than the federal government – at least on paper. In 2004, voters amended the state constitution to include the people’s right to “access to information regarding the conduct of the affairs of the people”. And in 2018, the legislature approved SB 1421, which allows the public to view records involving police misconduct and serious use of force under the state’s public records law.

Some law enforcement agencies, however, have dragged their feet to comply. The LA Times sued Los Angeles County, alleging that the sheriff’s department has repeatedly refused to release public files on MPs involved in misconduct or shootings. This is one of many cases in which this newspaper, sometimes joined by other news outlets, has gone to court to demand information that the public has a right to see on issues ranging from possible misconduct of police to allegations of sexual abuse and harassment during immigration detention. centers.

The so-called “sun” laws can be further improved to make it more difficult for public officials to conceal their decisions in secrecy. For example, State Senator Nancy Skinner, D-Berkeley, author of SB 1421, proposed new legislation that would give the public access to additional records of police misconduct and impose fines on agencies. who would not have responded in a timely manner.

At the federal level, Congress should require members of the judiciary to be more open about their financial affairs, including the gifts they receive in connection with speaking engagements and the reimbursement of travel expenses.

But no matter what the law says, some government agencies will prefer to operate in the shadows. That is why the government must be pressed to be transparent and accountable not only during Sun Week, but every day of the year.

The above editorial was published on March 18 by the Los Angeles Times. His views are his.

]]>
https://withariane.com/open-and-responsible-bedfordgazette-com/feed/ 0
UPDATE 1-Canada Launches New Business Rent Assistance Program, Expands Support for Other Coronaviruses https://withariane.com/update-1-canada-launches-new-business-rent-assistance-program-expands-support-for-other-coronaviruses/ https://withariane.com/update-1-canada-launches-new-business-rent-assistance-program-expands-support-for-other-coronaviruses/#respond Wed, 24 Mar 2021 07:52:07 +0000 https://withariane.com/update-1-canada-launches-new-business-rent-assistance-program-expands-support-for-other-coronaviruses/ (New first paragraph, adds costs planned until December) OTTAWA, Oct. 9 (Reuters) – Canada on Friday announced a series of new and improved aids for businesses affected by the coronavirus pandemic, including a new rent subsidy program to replace its old rent relief program , very criticized. Canada’s Emergency Rent Subsidy Program will provide direct […]]]>

(New first paragraph, adds costs planned until December)

OTTAWA, Oct. 9 (Reuters) – Canada on Friday announced a series of new and improved aids for businesses affected by the coronavirus pandemic, including a new rent subsidy program to replace its old rent relief program , very criticized.

Canada’s Emergency Rent Subsidy Program will provide direct support to businesses and other organizations facing loss of income, Finance Minister Chrystia Freeland said at a press conference. The program will run until June 2021.

The government will also provide “additional and targeted” supports to businesses that are forced by a public health order to temporarily shut down to help curb coronavirus infections, Freeland said.

“As we fight the second wave of COVID-19, public health officials have imposed further restrictions. It’s the right thing to do, but it imposes costs, ”Freeland said. “This new targeted support will help businesses navigate bottlenecks. “

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, speaking at the same press conference, said Canada was at a crossroads in tackling a second wave of the novel coronavirus.

Freeland said Canada’s emergency wage subsidy program has been extended until June 2021 and the Canada Business Emergency Account will be expanded to allow for larger, partially repayable loans.

Together, the three programs are expected to cost an additional C $ 19.6 billion ($ 14.9 billion) through December 19, 2020.

Trudeau’s Liberal government said in July that the 2020-2021 budget deficit would likely reach C $ 343.2 billion, mostly due to COVID-19 aid, the largest deficit since World War II.

Under the previous rent relief program, which expired at the end of September, landlords had to apply for a forgivable loan that would cover half of a tenant’s rent. The tenant was to pay a quarter and the landlord was to absorb the rest.

Its budget was $ 2.97 billion Canadian. As of Oct. 7, it had helped some 130,000 small businesses at a cost of about Can $ 1.8 billion, the government said. ($ 1 = 1.3129 Canadian dollars) (Reporting by Julie Gordon in Ottawa; Editing by Richard Chang and Paul Simao)

]]>
https://withariane.com/update-1-canada-launches-new-business-rent-assistance-program-expands-support-for-other-coronaviruses/feed/ 0
Michael O’Neill opens up on the interest that has been expressed in the Stoke City player and describes Potters’ position https://withariane.com/michael-oneill-opens-up-on-the-interest-that-has-been-expressed-in-the-stoke-city-player-and-describes-potters-position/ https://withariane.com/michael-oneill-opens-up-on-the-interest-that-has-been-expressed-in-the-stoke-city-player-and-describes-potters-position/#respond Wed, 24 Mar 2021 07:52:06 +0000 https://withariane.com/michael-oneill-opens-up-on-the-interest-that-has-been-expressed-in-the-stoke-city-player-and-describes-potters-position/ Stoke City Director Michael O’Neill found as the Potters have shown interest in clubs goaltender Joe Burisk seeking emergency loan signings since the January window closed. Bursik started the season on loan with League One Doncaster Rovers where he made a positive impression and managed to record two clean sheets in his ten appearances and […]]]>

Stoke City Director Michael O’Neill found as the Potters have shown interest in clubs goaltender Joe Burisk seeking emergency loan signings since the January window closed.

Bursik started the season on loan with League One Doncaster Rovers where he made a positive impression and managed to record two clean sheets in his ten appearances and averaged two saves per game (Sofascore). He was then recalled early by the Potters after they suffered injuries both at Southampton Loanee Angus Gunn and Adam Davies.

The 20-year-old has stepped up impressively for O’Neill’s side and has managed to record seven clean sheets in 15 league games (Sofascore). This happened before Gunn and Davies returned to physical form and has since seen him move down the pecking order in recent weeks.

“Quiz:

Nick Hancock is a Stoke City supporter – True or False?


Speak to the Stoke Sentinel, O’Neill revealed that the Potters have decided to keep Burisk until the end of the campaign so he can compete with Davies and Gunn for his place on the team. He also admitted that they had expressed interest from other clubs for emergency loans for the keeper.

He said: “Joe was on loan and the plan was for him to stay on loan in League One. This plan changed due to the injury of the two senior goalkeepers. Joe came back and did very well.

“By the time we had three keepers again, the January window had closed, so he didn’t have the option to go out on loan again, except as an emergency loan.

“There have been clubs that have asked for this, but we don’t think they have been adapted.

“I told the goalies I don’t think they should know too much about who’s on the bench. It’s more like a three.

“I felt Adam (Davies) deserved a chance to start because he didn’t have a chance to lose his place through injury. Angus (Gunn) seized the opportunity, then Joe seized the opportunity.

“Joe is a young goalie with a lot to look forward to and a lot ahead of him. He’s part of the England Under-21 squad which is a big boost for him, and he needs to push to make sure he has the opportunity to be number one here. here the end of the season and move on. next season too.

The verdict

It will have been a difficult time for Bursik, who would have aimed to retain his place in the starting XI after performing very well in the absence of Davies and Gunn. However, it was always going to be tough with O’Neill trusting these two more experienced goalkeepers and with the Potters failing to deliver consistent results as the pair returned to form he was dropped.

Bursik is clearly a keeper with a bright future in the game, and it may well be that if O’Neill still sees him as the third pick in the next term, he might need a loan to secure regular playing time. The 20-year-old has now had a taste of first-team football and will likely be eager to continue getting it next season.

You can understand the Potters don’t want to let him go on an emergency loan these past few weeks, they need a backup if Gunn and Davies’ injuries recur. Although it is also beneficial for the Guardian to continue training with the Potters and learning from Stoke’s two senior Guardians.

]]>
https://withariane.com/michael-oneill-opens-up-on-the-interest-that-has-been-expressed-in-the-stoke-city-player-and-describes-potters-position/feed/ 0