HARRISBURG, Pa. (WHTM) — Officials from a midstate bank were at the White House on Tuesday, speaking with President Donald Trump about the second round of funding that is now available through the Paycheck Protection Program, or PPP.
That money is meant to keep small businesses afloat during the pandemic, and their workforce employed.
In the first round of funding approved at the end of March, President Trump said the PPP provided 1.6 million small businesses with more than $340 billion in emergency funding.
“We’re coming back and we’re coming back strong,” Trump said.
Strong and fast, with the first and second rounds only four weeks apart.
“In the first 24 hours of the 2nd round of funding, we’ve handled over 30 percent more loans than any previous day of the program,” Trump said.
In the PPP’s first 14 days, the President said they processed as many loans as the Small Business Administration would typically process in 14 years.
He marked the launch of round two Tuesday with small business owners, and lenders.
Luke Bernstein, executive vice president of Orrstown Bank, represented the midstate.
“In just 14 days, we were able to process approximately 1,500 paycheck protection loans, totaling $370 million,” Bernstein said. “We’re helping pizza shops, delis, healthcare workers, repair shops, and construction companies.”
It was an honor, Bernstein said, to tell the nation how the midstate is helping its neighbors.
“Telling the President firsthand was just absolutely fantastic,” he said. “Every one of those loans represents jobs in our area and supporting our community so we were very proud.”
Round two loans have already begun, and are going fast.
“We had one [Tuesday] where we called to tell them we secured them funding from this round, and the business owner broke down and cried,” Bernstein said.
Impacted businesses, he suggests, should apply now.
“Timing is of the essence because there’s a critical demand for these much-needed funds and relief,” Bernstein said.
President Trump said they’ve already processed 450,000 loans totaling more than $50 billion in round two, which launched on Monday.
That round two money, is expected to run out faster than round one.