Glitches, Overwhelmed Site Hurts Second Rollout of PPP Loans In N.H.
Local banks say technical glitches are delaying the submission of applications for the second round of an emergency funding program for small businesses and nonprofits.
On Monday, the second phase of the Paycheck Protection Program, or PPP, got off to a rocky start. Local banks reported technical glitches as they attempted to submit loan applications for approval through the Small Business Administration.
“Folks were having to sit at their computers and hit refresh, refresh, and try to get loans through,” said Kristy Merrill, president of the New Hampshire Bankers Association. “Some would get partially through, and then get kicked out. It was really just intermittent access.”
PPP loans provide companies and nonprofits with fewer than 500 employees access to emergency funding to cover approved expenses including up to two months of payroll. If certain requirements are met, the loans will be forgiven. The program was funded through the federal CARES Act, a $2 trillion measure aimed at softening the economic blow of the coronavirus pandemic.
During the first round of PPP funding, approximately 11,500 New Hampshire companies and nonprofits accessed more than $1 billion in loans. However, many entities weren’t able to receive loans as the program, initially funded at $350 billion, ran out of money.
For this second round, valued at $310 billion, Merrill says local banks were prepared to work extended hours to process applications from their clients.
“I had one bank tell me they had a team of six people ready to go, ready to work through the night, and they worked all day, and literally could not get a single loan approved,” Merrill said.
By Wednesday morning, Merrill said many Banking Association members were reporting improved access to the SBA’s online filing system.
[DISCLOSURE: NHPR is among the New Hampshire companies that have received a loan through the PPP.]